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Mentor Kristen wins national midwifery award

Published 13/03/2018

A Royal Derby Hospital midwife has won one of the UK’s top midwifery awards for leading a project that helps newly qualified midwives.

Kristen Goodall set up Derby Teaching Hospitals’ Preceptorship Programme to support new midwives through their first year of work by pairing them up with a buddy.

Recruitment and the retention of midwives at the Trust have all improved as a result, while the project has also ensured a smooth transition into midwifery for newly qualified midwives.

And this work has now gained national recognition, with Kristen winning the Midwifery Education, Learning and Research Award at the Royal College of Midwives (RCM) Annual Midwifery Awards.

The Maternity Professional Development Advisor said: “Whilst my name is on it, this award is for the whole Professional Development Team. The entire midwife workforce works so hard to help make the preceptorship midwives into the midwives they are today. It fills me with an immense sense of pride to see them progress and then, in turn, support others further down the line. The feedback we have had for the programme has been excellent and it has really helped to change the culture and support for all new starters.”

The Professional Development Team set up the Preceptorship Programme after spotting a need to support newly qualified midwives coming to work at the Trust, as it expanded its midwifery workforce with a lot of newly qualified midwives. 

All newly qualified midwives undergo a 6 month support programme when they start work, although it was felt that there should be more robust support measures in place for new starters. 

Kristen therefore helped put in place a 16 month programme that supported these midwives. This included mentoring from experienced midwives and a structured education programme which included working in different parts of maternity care, such as maternity units and out in the community.  

Jane Haslam, Head of Midwifery at Derby Teaching Hospitals, said: “We’re delighted that Kristen and the Professional Development Team have received this well-deserved recognition. Providing the right support network for our newly qualified midwives is crucial to aiding their development. To see the whole maternity team working together to make this happen is fantastic to see and they should all be commended for their efforts.”

Derby Teaching Hospitals midwives Rebecca Fisher and Jane Taylor-Gray attended the ceremony to accept the award on Kristen’s behalf. 

Gill Walton, Chief Executive and General Secretary of the Royal College of Midwives, said: “It is critical that newly qualified midwives get the right support when they come into the profession. Kristen’s work is a great example of how this can be achieved and how it can ensure our midwifery workforce for the future. This is a project that deserves this recognition and I congratulate Kristen on winning the award.”

Rebecca Bennett, from award sponsor JOHNSON’S®, said: “We are always delighted to support the education of tomorrow’s midwives and this submission offered a fantastic opportunity for students both to work with mentors and to extend their learning in a structured and relevant way.  The results on recruitment and retention speak for themselves and Kristen is a very worthy winner.”

Last Modified 13/03/2018