Highlights from June London Board meeting
Published: 26 June 2012
Here are some of the highlights from the June meeting of the RCN London board.
The London Region board had a packed agenda covering everything from feedback from RCN Congress , the growing impact of the Health and Social Care Act on London health services, and an upcoming RCN advertising campaign to promote the essential role of nursing.
Ian Norris, who with Andy McGovern represents London on RCN Council, gave an update on their May meeting. Council agreed a new RCN advertising campaign – ‘This is Nursing` - a hard hitting two week campaign on buses, bill boards and tube stations to promote the challenges, the rewards and the value of nursing. Public feedback will be encouraged via a web address on all adverts. Council also reported on the launch of the RCN Education Commission, an independent body examining nurse education, chaired by Lord Willis. The Commission has now met and is gathering evidence.
Branch annual plans: the London board heard that nine out of ten branch activity plans had been received with events organised for the rest of 2012/13.
RCN plans for regional board transition: Bernell Bussue, Regional Director advised that following discussions at Congress about the RCN’s country wide board transition plans, the Chair of Council or her deputy would meet with the London Board and Branch Honorary Officials to consult with them and answer concerns, such as changes in UK representative seats on Boards, changes to student representatives on Boards and the introduction of seats on Council for Health Care Assistants / Assistant Practitioners. The Board called for the meeting to be open to all active Branch members. The meeting will take place at 13:30-15:30 at Friends meeting house. Anyone interested in attending the meeting should make contact with Maureen Graham at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Accredited RCN reps update: Julia Carter-Meadows, Learning and Development Facilitator for the region reported on the activity of RCN London representatives in 2011/12. She was concerned that a number of courses had to be cancelled due to low numbers, and that there had to be more flexible ways to deliver training. Karen Barrett, board member, said that regional committees are now joint, and it was planned to have a special slot on CPD (continuing professional development). Julia will support this. Julia also assured the board that funding for training would still be available, despite recent low turnouts. Julia was congratulated on her feedback from those taking the foundation modules.
Congress 2012: The RCN London Welcome Event was well received and well attended with a number of plaudits going to guest speaker and patient champion, Ashley Brooks. The regional merit award was received by board member Andrew White for his considerable contribution over the years. Two long service awards were presented at the event to Karen Sanders and Claire Picton with Faith Thornhill, Judy Durrant, Veronica Hall and Angela Griggs to be presented theirs after Congress. The Mary Seacole memorial fund raised £101 at the Welcome Event and just over £400 through the Congress week. In addition £300 was raised for the St Christophers charity. The Board was concerned that funding for members withdrawn close to Congress had caused problems with hotel bookings. They called for clear instructions about funding before the branch AGMs. Pictures from Congress have been put on You Tube by board member Mike Smith click here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bxl-x6EqsvI
Open space: Three observers attended the board meeting, activists Carlos Forni, Diane Cameron and Shazeda Begum. Carlos commented that the range of issues covered by the Board were very relevant to nursing and supported the discussion about Congress highlighting the concern that people arriving late into the Congress Hall caused disruption for those who returned on time. The Board agreed to raise this through the Agenda Committee.
Board sub group sessions
Ursula Gallagher reported for the Health Service transformation group. She said the group could offer a different input to the board programme of work and it was agreed by the Board the time was right to review progress of work in the sub-groups and how to get better synergies. It was agreed that the development session at the next board meeting would be devoted to this review.
Chris McDonnell reported for the Membership and Diversity Group. He said they were preparing packs to support branches in the future in completing their activity plans. They were also looking at requirements for workplace units.
Mike Smith reported for the Professional, technical and employment relations group who are reviewing the development opportunities for representatives and how to promote the value of training. Some suggestions are; 10 ten minute on-line continuing professional development sessions covering issues such as needle stick injuries, preparing a case and latex allergy. Representatives need to be more aware of development days and the training available. Training available for the rest of 2012 include emotional resilience, Equalities Act, and supporting members attending court.
Regional Director’s Report
Nora Flanagan, Operational Manager reported to the Board that current membership in London was close to 53,000. Nora also took the Board through the regional office staff changes within the five London sectors to even out workload. Having secured funding, a permanent part-time communications officer was being appointed and interviews are scheduled for 22 June. The number of cases being handled by RCN representatives is up and work was underway to ensure these can be easily registered with London’s case management system.