Cardiovascular, renal and metabolic (CRM) medicine was the talking point of a national nursing meeting earlier this month.
A total of 150 specialist nurses attended the inaugural meeting at the Birmingham Conference Events Centre on Friday, July 8.
Entitled ‘hFRenDs’, (Heart Failure, Renal and Diabetes), this “highly energised and productive” event provided a forum for specialist nurses working in CRM medicine to discuss shared challenges and opportunities for collaboration and innovation.
Sponsored by Astra Zeneca, the free-to-attend event was organised by the British Society for Heart Failure (BSH) Nurse Forum, the Association of Nephrology Nurses (ANN) UK and the Diabetes Specialist Nurse (DSN) Forum UK, in partnership with LKOTT Medical Communications.
During the meeting, expert speakers identified the essential role of specialist nurses in developing robust clinical networks and partnerships within CRM medicine.
Keynote speaker, Professor David Wheeler, Honorary Consultant Nephrologist at the Royal Free London NHS Trust, spoke about the importance of working together in the current CRM environment.
He said: “We need to take down the wall between primary and secondary care. This means getting the nephrologists out into the community to work alongside the GPs.
“We need to define roles and specialists need to be available when GPs require advice. In return, GPs should be willing to monitor patients over time in a structured way.”
Meanwhile, fellow keynote speaker Professor Alison Leary, from London South Bank University, discussed what the future of specialist nursing might look like.
At the end of her session, she concluded: “Specialist nurses have to be more visible going forward so that people can celebrate you for what you are and the contribution you make. Nurses are the solution to a lot of the issues in healthcare.”
Throughout the meeting, delegates also heard from the faculty leaders of the three specialist nursing groups.
Bethany Kelly, from the DSN Forum UK, said: “The hFRenDS event represented a vital step forward in team working in CRM medicine and a move away from traditional disconnected models of care.”
Attendees were also able to share their own experiences, learnings and examples of best practice in partnership working that had already driven positive change at a local level, as well as their aspirations for a better future in hFRenDs care.
Overall, all of the delegates who provided post-event feedback agreed that the meeting had increased their confidence in putting strategies into place to work as a multidisciplinary hFRenDs team in their locality.
The hFRenDs’ faculty and LKOTT Medical Communications, hope to obtain funding to bring more networking and educational events to the specialist nurse community, along with other health care professionals involved in the management of the hFRenDs patient – with the aim of driving collaboration and positive change across services.
AstraZeneca provided a sponsorship grant toward this independent Programme. AstraZeneca had no editorial input into or control over the agenda, content development or choice of speakers, except for the AstraZeneca sponsored symposium presentation.