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Meet the RCN Nurse Adviser for Infection Prevention and Control

Role of the nurse adviser

Nurse advisers work within the Nursing Department and sit within the professional body arm of the Royal College. Their roles are diverse and cover the four countries of the UK as well as supporting European and international work. The Nursing Department's role is to 'influence, develop and support nursing practice' and this provides a central focus for the work that Advisers undertake with members and RCN stakeholders. 

All nurse advisers work closely with all RCN departments and countries/regions but contact and collaboration with RCN members is our key objective. Nurse advisers work closely with Nursing Forums and other membership groups and collaborate across areas of nursing practice wherever possible. Go to the Nursing Department web pages for more information.

Nurse Adviser for Infection Prevention and Control

Rose Gallagher is the Nurse Adviser for Infection Prevention and Control. Rose was appointed substantively as the full-time nurse adviser in July 2009 having worked for the RCN on a part-time secondment basis for two years. This is the first time a full-time nurse adviser has been appointed for infection prevention and reflects the RCN's commitment to this key area of practice.

Rose GallagherRose trained in Brighton and after qualifying gained a wide variety of experience working in both acute and community settings.

Rose started her career in infection control (as it was known then) as a surveillance nurse undertaking surgical site surveillance for bowel surgery. This led to a real interest in infection control and she went on to work as a trainee infection control nurse at Wycombe Hospital in 1999. In 2002 she was appointed to the Lead Infection Control Nurse position at Stoke Mandeville Hospital, now part of Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust. Rose remained in post during and after the outbreaks of Clostridium difficile after which she took opportunities to develop through secondments to the RCN and other NHS organisations as Strategic Advisor for infection control or as a member of HCAI support teams.

Rose is currently a member of the Rapid Review Panel and a committee member of the Central Sterilising Club.

Role profile

Current RCN priorities for infection prevention include revision of the RCN guidance on the management of healthcare waste, defining a role framework and competences for link practitioners and commissioning for infection prevention.  Other projects are also in progress and further information can be found in the 'Wipe it Out' section.  Publications undertaken by Rose can be found in the Publications page.  Rose is also working closely with colleagues in RCN Scotland supporting the Vale of Leven enquiry and supports RCN Patient safety activity.

As Nurse Adviser Rose works closely with key stakeholders (for example relevant departments of health, patient and user groups and other professional societies) and attends meetings and working parties on behalf of the RCN. Rose also works closely with all four countries of the UK and travels regularly as part of this work.

In addition to infection prevention work, Rose currently supports a number of Nursing Forums and communities (Cancer and Breast Care, Nephrology, Gastrointestinal Nursing, IV and Haematology). Between them, these communities have approximately 20,000 members and Rose is in regular contact with the Chairs and other committee members to ensure the forums remain active and meet the needs of their respective members.

If you have any questions or would like any further information relating to the Nursing Department or Nursing Forums or communities please contact ipc@rcn.org.uk