Wendy Mitchell

PgD Health Visiting and Public Health Nursing 2012
MSc Community Health 2013

Professional Advisor to the Scottish Government for Children & Families 

Wendy Mitchell 680

Tell us in more detail what your role entails, what challenges you currently face, and how you are finding ways to cope.

My role is to advise the Government from a professional perspective about nursing policy and practice in relation to improving the health and wellbeing of children and young people across Scotland. I work closely with many universities in terms of professional education and role development. Currently I am leading a review of school nursing across Scotland to maximise their contribution within an integrated context. I have a real passion around protecting vulnerable children and I am involved in various work streams in Government seeking to do this. 

Towards the end of last year I was part of a UK team co-ordinating celebrations for 2020 Year of the Nurse & Midwife celebrations. Which obviously have been superseded at this time, however I am sure there will be amazing acts of professional bravery and learning to come which will change the celebrations at a point in future. 

The current COVID-1 9 pandemic has required me like everyone else to work at pace and be flexible in my contribution. The initial challenge as a Professional Advisor has been to produce, with colleagues, national guidance to support continued delivery of safe care by Nurses, AHPs, NHS Boards and Health and Social Care Partnerships in the Community. Maximising their impact in maintaining and delivering safe care to people in their home or homely setting.   

it is important to keep at the forefront that NHS staff are experiencing unprecedented challenge and the reality of the pandemic is frightening. People are naturally worried given the global impact, staff will worry about their own health and that of their families. 

Supporting each other within a whole system context has been critical, we are certainly all in this together. We have an important role as advisors in government to guide and advocate for colleagues, ensuring policy supports their practice keeping them and their patients safe.

Do you have a top tip for coping at a time of crisis? Or a few words of advice or support for fellow students and alumni on the front line?

For those trying to cope in time of crisis, I will recommend to try new fitness routine, learn something new or perfecting what they like. Talk to friend family or support group. Keep yourself occupied, keep moving.