General Practice Nurse Testimonials 

Testimonials from Practice Nurses 

Read about the real experiences of Practice Nurses. Learn about their journeys into General Practice Nursing and the opportunities it has opened up for them. Hear their advice for those considering moving into the role and why they find it so rewarding. 
 

Louise 

How did you start your career as a practice nurse? 
 
After many failed applications I found a job as a part time practice nurse/part time anticoagulation nurse and built upon my skills there before moving to full time practice nursing. 
 
What advanced roles/opportunities have you taken on in your career? 
 
I feel that you get the opportunity to become a specialist in many areas at the same time. 
 
What do you enjoy most about your job? 
 
I enjoy the variety. I enjoy working with children and adults who are generally healthy. If we do a good job managing chronic conditions, then no-one knows about it because they don't deteriorate. I didn't think I would like to see the same people over and over again as I worked previously in intensive care, but the longer I have been a practice nurse the more I value being able to see someone for years and getting to know them and their families. I also enjoy that many of our duties are hands on, practical nursing skills. 
 
What advice would you give someone considering a career in general practice nursing? 
 
Do it! It is a wonderful job. It is challenging and intimidating at first as you need to know so much but with a supportive practice you will learn and develop on the job. You don't need to do ward nursing first if you know this is where you want to end up. I came into general practice nursing when I was aged 25 and have never looked back, it definitely isn't a wind down to retirement job! Just keep applying for jobs, even if they ask for experience, experienced practice nurses are hard to find, and practices are often willing to train the right person up. 

Rachel 

How did you start your career as a practice nurse? 
 
I came in to practicing nursing straight from qualifying, in all honestly mostly because of the working hours it offers. I wanted a better work/life balance than shift work could offer me. At that time (9 years ago now), it was quite unusual to go into practice nursing as a newly qualified nurse. So to help with the transition I completed a 12 month postgraduate course upon starting the role, called the fundamentals to practice nursing. This involved 1 day study alongside my working hours. This helped me to gain the skills I needed to be able to do many of the caring duties and skills that the practice nurse role involves. 
 
What advanced roles/opportunities have you taken on in your career? 
 
One of the absolute best things about general practice is that you can develop in the areas that you have a passion for. For me, this was diabetes care which I now lead on for our practice. General practice is a very broad and diverse area of nursing, and no two practice nurses are the same because we all have areas of particular skills or special interests. There is scope to upskill in long term condition management and lead in these areas, to complete further training to work in an advanced clinical role, and to do your prescribing if you want to. I found that I enjoyed teaching, and so I have taken on extended roles within the training hub and local universities to support Nurses and Nursing Associates who are working in general practice. 
 
What do you enjoy most about your job? 
 
I enjoy the variety of the role and the fact that every day is different. I love that we get to follow the patients journey in a different way than you would perhaps get the opportunity to within an acute setting. Apart from diabetes, another area I am interested in is supporting child and their families, and with this I can often see a patient through from pre-pregnancy to birth, then support them and their baby as they grow, then see that baby throughout their childhood. Then you may see the grandparents and other relatives too. It’s very satisfying and caring for and knowing the whole family helps you to build a rewarding and trusting relationship with all involved. 
 
As we generally work in smaller teams than you would see on a ward, I have always found that there is a lovely family feel within general practice nursing teams and we support each other through the tough times that a career in nursing inevitably brings. 
 
What advice would you give someone considering a career in general practice nursing? 
 
I would strongly encourage you to seek out a placement, or at the very least some insight days to make sure you have a good understanding of what the role entails and to learn a little more about how general practice works. If you do apply for any practice nursing positions, have a look at local fundamentals to practice nursing courses and see if this is something a potential employer would support you in doing. And most importantly- do not be put off by job adverts that ask for you to ideally have some nursing experience before applying. The job I have now ideally wanted a nurse with 5 years post qualification experience, and I had none!  

Pam 

How did you start your career as a practice nurse? 
 
Back in 1991 when my GP who I was attending for an appointment offered me a job! Never looked back. 
 
What advanced roles/opportunities have you taken on in your career? 
 
I am the lead nurse for 2 different surgeries, the second more as a mentor. I am also the Nursing Associate lead for Partners Health a GP federation in Rushcliffe. 
 
What do you enjoy most about your job? 
 
I love the variability, so many different areas of nursing in general practice, there’s never a chance to be bored! ...from baby immunisations to long term condition care. I enjoy working with families, the practice teams and also the wider teams of Partners Health and Rushcliffe primary care network. 
 
What advice would you give someone considering a career in general practice nursing? 
 
No brainer… DO IT, you’ll never regret it! 

Emma 

How did you start your career as a practice nurse? 
 
I met a PN at a diabetes education session and she encouraged me to consider practice nursing. 
 
What advanced roles/opportunities have you taken on in your career? 
 
Pessary fitting, minor illness, paediatric minor illness. 
 
What do you enjoy most about your job? 
 
Making clinical decisions and having to think and plan my own clinics and patient care. 
 
What advice would you give someone considering a career in general practice nursing? 
 
It’s hard but fulfilling work! 

Kirsten 

How did you start your career as a practice nurse? 
 
I applied to be a practice nurse after working in the emergency department and the walk-in centre. I wanted a job that had more regular hours and having worked in a demands-led environment for 5 years I was excited about patients having an appointment and a scheduled time to take some of the pressure off! I’ve now been a practice nurse for more than 20years. 
 
What advanced roles/opportunities have you taken on in your career? 
 
I have really enjoyed the different experience and opportunities I have as a practice nurse. I initially specialised in sexual health and contraception. This allowed me to train to fit and remove contraceptive implants. Later I specialised in managing long term conditions like diabetes, asthma and COPD. I completed my non-medical prescribing and find real satisfaction in independently managing patients long term conditions. I can review blood results, change and start medications, provide patient education and feel like I am making a real difference to patients in helping them to manage their long-term health. 
I have also had opportunities to develop management skills by being a nurse manager, learning about recruitment, interviewing, appraisals, and logistics for developing different services. 
 
What do you enjoy most about your job? 
 
I like getting to know my patients, feeling the trust that they have in you over time. It’s amazing to see families grow and patients grow older as you continue to care for them. Since becoming a non-medical prescriber, I find satisfaction in being able to manage all aspects of a patients care and becoming an expert in my field. Working in a general practice team where all different specialities come together and value each other’s expertise and roles is a great feeling. 
 
What advice would you give someone considering a career in general practice nursing? 
 
I would say ‘go for it’! You learn so much, there is always new things to pick up, I still feel like I’m learning after 20 years. If you think you’d enjoy working independently but as part of a team, practice nursing could be for you. You can come into practice nursing with experience or as a newly qualified nurse. If you can get a placement or insight day this will really help you to know if this might be a career for you. 

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