Sixteen young people, most in Year 9 (13/14 year-olds), spent the morning at the hospital meeting a variety of health professionals, including a nurse, midwife, dietician, radiographer and physiotherapist. The students were able to talk with the staff about what their jobs entail, career paths and qualifications needed.
A ‘resuscitation’ session taught the group some invaluable life-saving tips. They were then able to practise chest compressions and the ‘kiss of life’ on the type of mannequin used in real life first aid training. There was also an opportunity to learn about blood pressure and to take a reading.
“I found it really interesting,” said one of the students. “I liked how they explained the different job options and the sessions with the life saving and blood pressure. I want to be a paediatric nurse or, maybe, a physio.”
The visit was arranged under Inspire!’s contract with Camden Council’s Camden Partnership for Educational Excellence (CPEE) initiative to provide programmes of work related learning and work experience for a number of Camden schools.
The Royal Free visit follows an introductory workshop on the health sector hosted at the school last year when three members of nursing staff, from different disciplines, showcased their work.
Deborah Sanders, Director of Nursing at the Royal Free, explained why the hospital was happy to host the Parliament Hill visit: “We want to have good links with our local community. We’re keen to work with local schools to promote the opportunities that exist in healthcare and to correct some of the perceptions about those roles. We are keen to recruit and retain local people so that our staff are more representative of our local community.”