Meet some of our Nurses

Meet some of the 35 WellChild Nurses working across the UK to help seriously ill children, young people and their families.

Amika Challacombe

WellChild Children’s Nurse Specialist – Long Term Ventilation, Sheffield

www.francesmilburnphotography.co.ukAs a WellChild Children’s Nurse, Amika provides vital support to seriously ill children and young people across Yorkshire. Amika specializes in helping children and young people who need a ventilator to assist with their breathing.

Amika helps to reduce the time children on long term ventilation have to spend in hospital by arranging and coordinating the care they need at home. She also provides specialist advice as well as emotional and other practical support for the whole family.

“My post being put in place means we can concentrate on delivering high quality community support at home for children on both long term invasive and non invasive ventilation. We are able to support children in the community when they become unwell to try to avoid hospital visits.” – Amika

Read about Ibraheem who is supported by Amika

I am in a very privileged position seeing families at their best and worst of times. By being a WellChild Children’s Nurse I can hopefully just make it all a bit easier for them.

WellChild Nurse Amika

Rachel Gregory

WellChild Long Term Ventilation Nurse Specialist, Nottingham

As the WellChild Long Term Ventilation Nurse Specialist, Rachel enables children and young people with complex health conditions to receive care in their own homes, reducing the time they have to spend in hospital by arranging and coordinating the care needed for these children and young people to live at home and providing emotional and practical support for the whole family. Rachel is based within the Community Nursing team at Nottingham Children’s Hospital, supporting families by working closely with colleagues in the community, hospitals, hospices and other specialist centres. Prior to this post Rachel worked in the Community Nursing Team and Paediatric Intensive Care and so brings considerable expertise and a comprehensive understanding of the needs and challenges faced by the families with whom she will be working.

Read about Maddison who is supported by Rachel

There are a growing number of home-ventilated children and this number is predicted to continue to rise. My aim as a WellChild Nurse is to provide these children's families with the necessary help and support so that they are able to care for their child safely and expertly in the best place, namely at home.

WellChild Nurse Rachel

Diane Miles

WellChild Palliative Nurse Specialist, London

Diane ensures children and young people with a life-limiting or life-threatening condition across Camden, Haringey and Islington receive the care and treatment they need at home with their families.Joe-25

As well as providing emotional and practical support for the whole family, including training for parents and carers, having a WellChild Nurse means more families can be supported as their child reaches the end of life. They will continue to have choice in where their child is cared for at this time and continued support after the death of their child. Diane has worked for the past three years as a Children’s Community Nurse in the area and so brings considerable expertise and a comprehensive understanding of the needs and challenges faced by the families she works with. Prior to this she provided teaching and clinical support in the acute paediatric setting; for student nurses undertaking their paediatric nursing training, particularly in the area of skills.

Read about Joe who is supported by Diane

It is an absolute privilege to be working with both children and families who are living with life limiting conditions and end of life situations. I hope the WellChild role will enhance the service already provided by the established Life Force team and will enable us to reach out to more families at an earlier stage of their journey

WellChild Nurse Diane

Aileen Crichton

WellChild Children and Young People’s Liaison Nurse, Ayrshire and Arran

Aileen qualified as a children’s nurse in 1981 and spent a number of years working within a hospital setting, firstly in a children’s hospital then onto a district general

hospital. In 2006 she became part of the children’s community nursing team in Ayrshire & Arran working with families where their child had complex health needs. Aileen became part of the WellChild Children’s Nursing Team in 2010.

“I’ve found that the experience of working within the community has given me a great insight into the enormous pressure felt by families who care for a child with a long term condition. In my role as WellChild Children and Young People’s Liaison nurse I work to streamline processes and provide a smooth transfer from hospital to home for the families.

I am also able to offer continuing support through home visits and telephone support. Training to ensure the child can be safely cared for at home and in the wider community is also an important part of my role and I will work with anyone involved in the child’s care to ensure they have the skills and confidence needed.

WellChild Nurse Aileen

Xanthe Baker

WellChild Senior Charge Nurse – Complex Care (Children & Young People), Lothian

Xanthe is the WellChild Senior Charge nurse – Complex Care (Children & Young People) helping chronically ill children and young people with exceptional health needs across Edinburgh, Midlothian, East and West Lothian, to leave hospital and receive the care and treatment they need at home.

Xanthe is based within the Lothian Exceptional Needs Support Group (LENS), supporting families by working closely with colleagues in the community, hospitals, hospices and other specialist centres to ensure the highest quality of care. She helps to reduce the time children and young people with complex health conditions have to spend in hospital by arranging and coordinating the care they need at home and providing emotional and practical support for the whole family.

Prior to this post Xanthe worked as a Senior Charge Nurse managing care packages for adults with Complex Health Needs and has many years of experience working as a Paediatric Nurse. She therefore brings considerable expertise and a comprehensive understanding of the needs and challenges faced by the families with whom she will be working.

 

I work closely with families already in the service as well as families who will be going through transition from hospital to home and transition from paediatric to adult services. I hope to improve the experience for all families.

WellChild Nurse Xanthe

Watch our documentary celebrating 10 years of the WellChild Nurse programme, with introduction from WellChild Patron, Prince Harry.