Royal College of Nursing Representing nurses and nursing, promoting excellence in practice, shaping health policies

Career Development Pathways

The RCN Gastrointestinal Nursing Forum is committed to having a visible presence in gastrointestinal nursing, and to positively promote careers within these environments.

If you are considering a career within the field of Gastrointestinal nursing – it’s so varied but exciting! There are so many different sub-specialities it can be difficult to choose and know what to do for the best. The steering group and other colleagues, have put together a short run down of their careers to date with an accompanying video of their career journey. The aim of this is to demonstrate the variety, enthuse you to look at your options and enjoy the journey into Gastrointestinal nursing.

You can get in touch via our Facebook page and look out for further RCN career events online.
Fiona Hibbert

Fiona Hibberts

Forum Chair

Consultant Nurse/ Co-Head of the Nightingale Academy at Guy’s and St. Thomas’ NHS Trust, London

Fiona has been in GI nursing now for 24 years and enjoys the variety the speciality has to offer. Fiona currently works in a corporate role focussing on education and research as she completes her own doctorate. However, she have held a variety of roles from sister, practice development nurse and lecturer practitioner in GI nursing. As a Clinical Nurse Specialist, then a Consultant Nurse, Fiona has become an endoscopist, non-medical prescriber and performs advanced physical assessment, family history assessment and a variety of functional investigations. Fiona was the first nurse to perform defecating proctography. She has been involved in colorectal surgery, cancer, enhanced recovery, benign and functional patient care, improving access, establishing new services and promoting the specialist roles within them. Fiona shares with you some of her story in the following video.

Claire Coughlan

Claire Coughlan

Consultant Nurse - Colorectal Cancer, Lewisham and Greenwich NHS Trust

Claire Coughlan is a Consultant Nurse in Colorectal Cancer at Lewisham and Greenwich NHS Trust. She leads the 2WW telephone assessment service and her specialist interest is in colorectal cancer follow up and stoma care.

Julie Duncan

Clinical Nurse Educator in IBD

Julie works within the medical team at Takeda UK supporting IBD CNS development. Her key role within the RCN Gastrointestinal Forum is to collaborate with the IBD CNS within the RCN IBD Network and amplify their voice.
Kathy Whayman

Kathy Whayman

Senior Lecturer in Adult Nursing, University of Hertfordshire

Rebekah Hill

Rebekah Hill

Associate Professor, School Assessment Lead, Course Director for Acute, Critical & Emergency Care

Rebecca presently works as an Associate Professor within the School of Health Sciences, University of East Anglia. Rebecca has worked as a nurse in medical and gastroenterology settings for many years. She completed her PhD in 2012, which explored the experience of living with hepatitis C. Her current role involves both undergraduate and post graduate teaching across a range of professions; student supervision, clinical link work, module organisation as well as being the Director of Education and Assessment Lead within the school. Rebecca currently works across all professions as an Advanced Life Support Instructor, as part of the faculty in the recognition and treatment of critical illness courses and clinically within gastroenterology medical nursing fields.

Page last updated - 29/09/2021