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"A COUPLE OF MINUTES WITH..."

SARAH VOLPE, NURSE ADVISOR

Sarah Volpe is currently working through Hays Healthcare as a Nurse Advisor for NHS Direct in Newcastle. Sarah has worked in this role since October 2012. Prior to working for NHS Direct Sarah has had an interesting and varied career working in cardiothoracic surgery, cardio respiratory and cardiac intensive care, before going on to become a nurse tutor in Ethiopia.

sarahvolpeAs well as working as a nurse advisor Sarah runs a website and manages the social media for a maternal health charity called 'Life for African Mothers', Sarah is always looking for more ways to reach the healthcare community online about the work the charity does.

1. What is the best thing about working on an agency basis?
Working with Hays is great. I love the flexibility and choice of hours and shifts. It has been great for my work-life balance and has allowed me to continue to manage the website and social media for Life for African Mothers around my paid work.

2. If you could do one thing to improve patient care what would it be?
More nurses in every area of nursing

3. Do you have any advice for anyone studying at the moment?

Don't give up, because once you have completed your training you will never have to do it again and there are some great career opportunities in nursing.

4. What do you see as your biggest achievement in nursing and why?
I am proud of all my career and academic achievements; I have worked extremely hard to be where I am. I think a huge career achievement for me was working as a nurse tutor in Ethiopia and surviving – it was the most challenging thing I've ever done!

5. What do you do outside of work to relax?
I'm currently trying to fight off my normal nomadic travelling urges by enjoying my mischievous little kittens for a change of pace.

6. What is the most valuable piece of advice you have ever been given in building your expertise?
Never let anything surprise you.

7. Day shift or night shift? Why?
Day shift, because I can spend time with my husband and do more normal things like eat dinner at dinner time.

8. What steps have you initiated yourself to build your knowledge?
I’m always keen to keep up to date with current changes and online is a great way to do that with online and e-learning packages. I try to attend study days and courses I find interesting.

9. What is the most rewarding part of your role?
I love talking to parents about their children, giving them care advice and reassurance or helping them when they are worried. Not being from a paediatric background I thought I might find this challenging, but I really enjoy it.