Former Roald Dahl Non-malignant Haematology Nurse Jodi Betts who works at Addenbrookes Hospital, has recently been promoted to Matron for Paediatric Haematology/Oncology talks to Roald Dahl's Marvellous Children's Charity about her time as a Roald Dahl Nurse and provides advice for future specialist children's nurses.
Jodi Betts, former Roald Dahl Non-malignant Haematology nurse at Addenbrookes Hospital who has worked as a Roald Dahl nurse since 2013 and has recently been promoted to Matron for Paediatric Haematology/Oncology, talks to Roald Dahl's Marvellous Children's Charity about what inspired her to become a Roald Dahl nurse and what she has enjoyed most. Jodi also gives advice to future Roald Dahl nurses.
Why did you become a Roald Dahl nurse?
It was a brand new post and an opportunity to set up a new service for children and families who previously did not have any input from a nurse specialist.
What has been the best part of being a Roald Dahl nurse?
Too many best bits! Getting to know the children and their families and feeling as though you have made a difference, the opportunity to work closely with such an amazing charity and the opportunities that I have been lucky enough to be given. Not sure it was a best bit but I will never forget dressing up as an Oompa Loompa and jumping out of a plane!
What difference has the service made for children, young people and families in your care?
Having a designated point of contact has made an impact on the families, reduced anxiety and enabled them to only attend hospital when necessary. Being able to support and teach them about their child’s condition and management, as well as co-ordinating appointments, helps them to stay at home and reduce hospital visits. Liaison with school and local services helps the child get back to their normal life wherever possible, enabling the family to get on with living.
How do you feel being a Roald Dahl nurse has contributed to your professional development?
The opportunity to develop a new service has enabled me to learn new skills and grow in confidence working with a consultant team. Writing policies and guidelines has enabled me to understand the trust processes better and an insight into leadership. The knowledge I have gained about paediatric haematology as well as the focus groups I have attended with other Roald Dahl nurses have also contributed to my networking and professional skills.
What will you be doing in your new role?
In my new role I will be leading the paediatric haematology and oncology service at Addenbrookes.
What advice would you give to future Roald Dahl nurses?
Enjoy developing new relationships within your patient group, with new colleagues and with the charity. Roald Dahl’s Marvellous Children's Charity is an amazing charity to work with, make sure you attend the conference! But most importantly embrace opportunities to be the best nurse you can be for your patient group and for yourself.
Is there anything else you would like to add?
I have had an amazing time working with Roald Dahl's Marvellous Children's Charity and seeing the service impact positively upon the lives of children and their families. In my heart I will always be a Roald Dahl nurse and the lanyard looks good with my new uniform!
We wish Jodi the best of luck in her new role and can't thank her enough for providing the best possible healthcare for the seriously ill children in her care.