“It’s refreshing to work in an environment where change is encouraged and you can see your ideas being listened to and acted on. I’m enjoying working in a vibrant environment where I feel trusted and well supported.”
What’s your role at Virgin Care?
I am Head of Children’s Audiology. Our community paediatric audiology service covers Bath and North East Somerset (BaNES), west and mid Wiltshire and also the East Mendip area of Somerset.
How did you join?
I transferred from another provider where I had been working for just a few months leading the BaNES children’s audiology service. I was asked to take on the Wiltshire part of the service at transfer. The BaNES and Wiltshire services had previously been combined and so it was good to be able to bring them back together again.
What’s your professional background?
I am a Clinical Scientist in Audiology – an audiologist with postgraduate training. I have had the privilege of a wide-ranging and varied career pathway which, as well as paediatric audiology, has included working with adults with dizziness and balance problems, working with adults and children with cochlear implants, teaching on audiology degree courses and examining clinical competence of trainees on behalf of our professional body. I have also led and been involved in many different research projects, the vast majority about audiology, but close examination of my CV will reveal one or two about hip replacements and one or two about drinking alcohol in pregnancy!
What’s your role in Children’s Audiology?
I lead and manage the service. Thankfully, I also have time for clinical work – the assessment of hearing in children from about 8 months to 16 years old.
What are you working on at the moment to help everyone feel the difference?
Our team is currently rewriting our patient information which had become a bit dated. We are also working on improvements to our waiting room.
How has your role developed since you joined us?
The biggest development for me was taking on the Wiltshire service at transfer which more than doubled the size of my team.
What’s the most challenging part of your role?
One of the most challenging areas is assessing the hearing in children who have additional needs, for example those with Autistic Spectrum Disorder – we have to be very flexible in our approach and might need to see a child on several different occasions.
How have you felt the difference since you joined?
Well, it’s been all change! I feel like I’m still getting used to how Virgin Care do things. It’s great working for a forward-looking organisation which is committed to improving patient care and is constantly developing.
What do you enjoy most about working for Virgin Care?
Having worked for several large NHS trusts where it can be difficult to achieve change, it’s refreshing to work in an environment where change is encouraged and you can see your ideas being listened to and acted on. I’m enjoying working in a vibrant environment where I feel trusted and well supported.
What would you say to someone considering a role at Virgin Care?
Go for it! Be prepared for lots of ongoing change though……!