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Neuroscience Forum - link nurses

Nurses with expertise and particular specialism in neuroscience nursing who further help support the forum and represent the RCN on neuroscience nursing

Shona Floyd

Shona Floyd

Healthcare Engagement Manager for The Brain Tumour Charity

I have worked in Health & Social Care for my entire career and as a mature student took the plunge and began my training as an Adult Nurse back in 2004.

My non-nursing roles included being a HCA, Support Worker, Supervisor, Housing Officer all working in the community, elderly care, childcare and with young homeless teenage and young adults. Nursing training gives many opportunities, but my one placement which I really enjoyed was Oncology, subsequently my first registered role was on a haematology & oncology ward. I then moved into a Nursing Home as a unit manager for 3.5yrs where I actively changed the unit from solely elderly care to one which also specialised in respite care for those with a cancer diagnosis, that was where I nursed my first brain tumour patient.

I moved from there into lecturing Health & Social Care students in an inner city F.E college, which at times proved more challenging than pleasing a bed manager on a Saturday night shift.

In July 2021, I became the Healthcare Engagement Manager for The Brain Tumour Charity, my role is to engage health and allied health professionals, by establishing and building a community that promotes best practice and fosters peer networks and support. My focus is on improving outcomes, particularly those focussed on quality of life, by enabling professionals to deliver high quality patient centred care and involving patients and carers actively in their roles. Working with neuroscience centres I promote the implementation of our patient pathway, and which celebrates improvements in care and promotes access to research opportunities.

I am privileged since 2020 to work alongside the Tessa Jowell Centres of Excellence Designation team and have been a part of the interview panel when neuroscience centres apply to gain Centres of Excellence status. As part of this programme I am also very lucky to be part of the Tessa Jowell Academy on the nursing committee, where we help design and promote learning and development resources for those working in or those who have an interest in Neuro-Oncology.

Currently I am on the, Less Survivable Cancers Taskforce Scotland, where I work alongside other health professionals in those cancer groups (Lung, Pancreatic, Liver, Brain, Oesophageal & Stomach) where survival is the same as it was 40yrs ago. Collectively these cancers are responsible for a half of all cancer deaths, and sadly 5yr survival on average for any of these cancers is around 16%. We work collaboratively to drive change forward in Scotland, lobby government and the health boards to drive forward change, research for those affected.

From a Neurosciences viewpoint, I am also part of the Scottish Adult Neuro-Oncology Network, Scottish Patient Reported Outcomes Measures group and the Scottish Neuro Adult Supportive Care Group.

Melissa Peads Nurse

Melissa Clarke

Paediatric Neurodisability Clinical Nurse Specialist 

Qualified as a children’s nurse in 2012 and initially worked at Great Ormond Street Hospital on the Oncology/Haematology ward for 3 years. In 2015, she joined Paediatric Community Services in Croydon based within the Special School Nursing Team providing clinical care to highly complex children and young people with disabilities, followed by a leadership role within the team as Acting Clinical Service Lead. 

Melissa's current role is Paediatric Neurodisability Clinical Nurse Specialist in Croydon providing case management and holistic care for children and young people with disabilities and complex health needs. Melissa is passionate about improving coordinated care for children and young people with life limiting conditions and has developed a complex care pathway working in partnership with children and their families to manage the fluctuating presentation of the child's disability and associated health needs. 

She has a specialist interest in children and young people with Cerebral Palsy and complex health needs, particularly improving outcomes and providing holistic care in the community. She also has additional training in Caring for children and young people with life limiting conditions, Palliative Care and Cerebral Palsy.

Melissa is currently a Paediatric link nurse for the Royal College of Nursing Neuroscience Forum.