Nursing Associates Blog - April 2017 - Allison Reed

19 June 2017

Hello, my name is Allison Reed.

I am one of the Trainee Nursing Associates (TNAs) for Central and East at Cheshire and Wirral Partnership NHS Foundation Trust.

Before becoming a TNA, my time within CWP had been spent as a Health and Wellbeing Trainer for the Central and East Cheshire Recovery College.

My decision to apply for the role of a TNA, as a qualified assistant practitioner, was motivated by the tremendous, person-centred care that this role will bring to healthcare.

For my first placement, I was assigned to the Lime Walk Recovery and Assessment Unit in Macclesfield. During my time here, I have been fully embraced by all of the team. I cannot thank them enough for warmly welcoming me and making this placement a highly rewarding experience.

Whilst at Lime Walk, I’ve learned a lot from both nursing staff and clinical support workers alike. Participating in this placement helped to increase my knowledge of assessment, planning, implementing and reviewing.

I’ve also learned how to use the Recovery Star with patients. This simple tool enables us to plan person-centred strategies to facilitate a smooth transition into the community from an inpatient ward.

Having a person-centred attitude has also helped me to provide the most appropriate care to patients on the ward, particularly when faced with difficult challenges.

For example, one of our patients is regularly visited by podiatrists but almost always refuses treatment. However, I noticed the individual was able to overcome difficult situations when they were broken up into multiple, smaller goals.

On the podiatrist’s last visit to the ward, we split the session into different stages (come into the room, take shoes off, contact with the podiatrist etc.) and eventually, thanks to our person-centred approach, the patient received 20 minutes of full treatment. It felt so rewarding to be able to help improve that person’s care.

Before coming to the unit, I had a good grounding in physical health medication. However, I now feel I have a rounded understanding of mental health medications and some of the complex healthcare needs associated with patients with mental health conditions.

On top of this, I have enjoyed participating in multidisciplinary team meetings. I have observed the way clinicians discussed and meticulously planned the care of each individual. It was a real person-centred approach which included the thoughts and feelings of the service user on the unit.

My next placement starts in June in the Emergency Department at Macclesfield District General Hospital. Whilst I am sad to leave the team here at the Lime Walk Recovery and Assessment Unit, I am looking forward to the new challenges that my next placement will hold.


Senior Nursing Team update: Andrea Hughes, Associate Director of Nursing and Therapies

Here at Cheshire and Wirral Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, we continue to be tremendously encouraged by the progress of the Trainee Nursing Associates we have on placement at our organisation.

It is hugely satisfying to hear stories like Allison’s from a number of the trainees across Cheshire and Wirral.

The TNAs have already brought incredible value to our existing workforce here at the Trust. With the experiences that they are attaining whilst on the course, it is hoped that they will make an even greater contribution to nursing once they have graduated.

With trainees as motivated and as committed as Allison, I am sure that will be the case.

We continue to value the contributions of our partner Trusts and the University of Chester in helping to ensure the success of this worthwhile scheme.


Cheshire and Wirral is one of the first 11 pilot sites across England to pioneer the new nursing associate role. Six local NHS Trusts, including CWP, are working closely with partners to support 44 trainees as part of the two-year course. Click here for more information.

To find out more about opportunities at CWP please visit our ‘Working for Us’ pages.


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