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Equality, diversity and inclusion on the agenda at Nursing Live

Published on: 2 Oct 2023

Embedding equality, diversity, and inclusion across the whole nursing sector will be be explored at Nursing Live.

RCNi’s forthcoming event, Nursing Live which is free to attend (November 10th-11th, Liverpool ACC complex), will feature several in-depth discussion panels exploring the issue of equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) across the nursing profession and the wider healthcare sector.

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Sessions will focus on areas such as improving attitudes and awareness of all characteristics; integrating care and organisation pathways to reduce health inequalities; and embedding equality, diversity and inclusion in the nursing workforce.

Another key EDI topic set to be discussed is how hospitals can be made more neurodiverse-friendly for both patients, visitors, and staff. 

Central to this will be details of a project at Alder Hey children’s hospital which supported the sensory needs of neurodiverse children and young people which resulted in the development and delivery of sensory awareness training provision, and other resources.

The presentation, entitled Making hospitals a neurodiversity-friendly setting: lessons learned from working with children with autism, will be led by Joann Kiernan, Consultant Learning Disability Nurse at Alder Hey Children's Hospital, with additional contributions from parent carer, Monica Wright.

Joann said of her talk:

At Nursing Live I’ll be talking about a co-produced sensory project to support the needs of children and young people attending Alder Hey children’s hospital. Developed with and for young people through working with family forums, Contact, and NDTi, this work has been successful in developing sensory awareness training, initiating an internal sensory delivery group, and the development of resources.

It has also involved listening to the young people, and voices of their families and carers. Taking this co-produced approach has enabled honest and transparent partnerships, helping ensure equitable access to healthcare for all.

Joann Kiernan [square]

Joann Kiernan, Consultant Learning Disability Nurse at Alder Hey Children's Hospital

Other experts who will be at Nursing Live to debate EDI challenges and opportunities will include:

  • Dr Helena Ann Mitchell, mental health researcher and consultant for RCN’s Ethnic Minority sub-group
  • Piers Wilkinson, a director of the National Association of Disability Practitioners, and senior policy and campaigns lead at Diversity and Ability
  • Karen Bonner, Chief Nurse & Director for Infection Prevention and Control, Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust
  • Dr Nichola Ashby, RCN’s Deputy Director of Nursing, Education, Research and Ethics
  • Chris Caldwell, Chief Nursing Officer, North Central London Integrated Care Board

The RCN’s Nursing Awards, which will be held in Liverpool alongside Nursing Live on Friday November 10th, are also set to highlight examples of equality, diversity and inclusion best practice.

Open University student Jane Wareham, from the Isle of White NHS Trust, has been shortlisted for her work supporting neurodiverse healthcare students. This includes helping to create the SShine student group which has published a guide to practice-based learning for all neurodivergent students. 

Nursing support worker Kayleigh Gregory, from Cwm Taf Morgannwg University Health Board, is another RCN awards finalist. Kayleigh has successfully promoted diversity and inclusion in her workplace, creating resources to educate colleagues around gender-neutrality, bias, and stereotyping. 

And University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire’s Anti-Racism Council has been nominated for its anti-racism toolkit. Developed by the Council, which is comprised of minority ethnic staff and partners, the toolkit has empowered staff to be more inclusive, and act within the Trust’s professional codes and values. 

For more details on Nursing Live, and all the sessions focused on equality, diversity and inclusion, visit the Nursing Live website.

Nursing Live