Karen Beirne

Senior Nurse – Women, Children and Families Integrated Care Group, Nobles Hospital, Isle of Man

Hello my name is Karen and I am a paediatric nurse with 22 years’ experience. I have lived on the Isle of Man for the past 16 years and worked in a variety of roles. My specialisms are neurology, neurodisability, epilepsy and diabetes. My current role is Senior Nurse for Women, Children and Families at Nobles Hospital. In this position, I am responsible for the operational management of a number of clinical areas and teams: These being a 17-bed acute paediatric inpatient ward, paediatric outpatients, paediatric diabetes team, a 9-bed gynaecology ward and outpatients. This requires me to have the oversight of staffing, patient safety, quality and standards of care. On the Isle of Man, we have one acute hospital with 180 beds, which is supported by a number of community based services. Within paediatrics our staff are required to be able to deal with children and young people with any medical, surgical, orthopaedic or mental health condition. As a result, we have a highly skilled and multi-functional service. Nursing staff within our team also have the opportunity to train to become part of our air ambulance service to support children who need to be flown to the mainland for acute paediatric care.

The Isle of Man is a crown dependency of the United Kingdom and is a self-governing island with its own parliament called Tynwald. We have very strong links with UK health care but are not official part if the NHS.

In 2019 an independent review was conducted of our health and social system on the island and 26 recommendations were made to improve the way we deliver care on the Isle of Man. These recommendations are now the cornerstone of a transformation project that is currently taking place in the island health and social care service, which is now known as Manx Care.

I feel extremely privileged to have been given the opportunity to become an Inspire Improvement Fellow and I am the first Manx nurse to achieve this. I believe improving work based culture is pivotal to ensure all contacts at the point of care are positive and purposeful. In order to achieve excellent patient care, we must ensure our staff feel valued and invested in.

I am really looking forward to networking with other clinical leaders from across the UK, and learning new skills and practice based knowledge which will allow me to develop in my role.