Sarah earns title of Queen’s Nurse for work with care homes in Northern Devon

Sarah-Winfield-DaviesA NURSE who has played a key role in the success of an innovative NHS programme to train and support staff at care homes in Northern Devon has been awarded the title of Queen’s Nurse.

Sarah Winfield-Davies is a safeguarding adult nurse and nurse educator in the Northern Devon care homes team.

She was given her new title by The Queen’s Nursing Institute (QNI).

The award reflects a commitment to the values of community nursing, excellent patient care and a continuous process of learning and leadership.

Sarah said: “It is a great honour to become a Queen’s Nurse and it’s very satisfying to know that our work in Northern Devon is being recognised on a national level.”

The care homes team provides free training and support to around 50 independent providers to improve the safety and quality of care for residents and enhance collaborative working between organisations.

As part of the safeguarding process, Sarah identifies areas of practice which could be improved and works with her colleagues and care home managers to set up relevant training.

After the safeguarding process is complete, she provides ongoing support and monitoring to the care homes.

When not involved in safeguarding inquiries, Sarah supports care homes in other ways and works with Devon County Council to instigate wider improvements and share good practice.

She provides one-to-one training on improving documentation, including risk assessments and care plans, and leads a steering group which assists with networking.

Sarah also helps to organise the team’s annual Care Home Education Forum and produce a newsletter, both of which promote a collaborative approach to improving care.

The team has helped to improve patient experience and health outcomes for care home residents since it was set up by the Northern Devon Healthcare NHS Trust in 2012.

Among other things, the number of emergency admissions to hospital from care homes has declined, the amount of safeguarding investigations has fallen significantly and staff’s knowledge of various conditions has increased markedly following training.

Sarah promoted the team’s work at the QNI’s annual Healthcare at Home Conference at the Royal College of General Practitioners in London, where she was selected to make a poster presentation.

The presentation, entitled Caring for Care Homes, reflected the conference theme of ‘Inspire Innovate Implement’.

Sarah and her team manager, Tracey Morrish, were also invited to hold an exhibition and present a poster at the West of England Academic Health Science Network’s annual conference at Cheltenham Racecourse last week.

The event was entitled Enabling Collaborative Innovation and Sarah and Tracey won an award in the People Working Together category.


Queen’s Nurses benefit from development workshops, bursaries, networking and other opportunities.

The title is given following an application process which includes feedback about the individual from managers and patients.


The team won the partnership excellence category at the annual Guardian Public Services Awards in 2013 and was shortlisted for the Patient Safety Awards, led by the Health Service Journal and Nursing Times, in 2015.

The team has earned praise from the Care Quality Commission and Sir David Nicholson, the former chief executive of NHS England, who suggested its work should be replicated across the country.



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Last updated: March 6, 2018


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