Date: Thursday 13th June 2024 18:45 – 19:30

Can GPNs stop leg ulcers in their tracks?

Online via Zoom
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What’s it about?

This event focuses on the specific role of GPNs and primary care providing immediate and necessary care for lower leg wounds.

The session will describe the particular issues that lower leg wounds pose to community nursing and their often deterioration to leg ulcers.

By raising awareness of the impact of gravity on the limb and the role of national guidance, this session should give practitioner confidence in the increased use of compression socks to manage these wounds in partnership with their patients.

And stop leg wounds in their tracks!

Learning objectives

  • Identify the problems with leg wounds presenting in primary care
  • Raise awareness of how lower leg lacerations can deteriorate to a leg ulcer
  • Understand the impact of gravity on the lower leg
  • Understand the role of BSC1 socks in early intervention and self-management
  • Resources available to support patient management and education

Who should attend?

  • General practice nurses
  • Community practitioners
  • GPs

Who’s speaking?

La Toya De Freita – Committee Member of RCN, GPN Forum

La Toya qualified as a nurse in 2000 in Guyana, South America. She then migrated to the UK in 2003 and worked in Neuroscience and Critical Care. La Toya undertook a 1 year transition to general practice in 2017 via LSBU by completing a Specialist Practitioner GPN degree. As a Practice Nurse she was able to fulfil her passion for health promotion and health inequity.

La Toya works as a GPN 3 days week. She is currently working a part time role with the severe asthma team tackling health inequality of asthma with primary care. La Toya is very passionate about health promotion, providing best care for the population, reaching those that do not engage and raising the profile of primary care as GPNs are the gate keepers and collaborate between secondary and primary care.

La Toya De Freita – Committee Member of RCN, GPN Forum

Penny Sibthorpe – Committee Member of RCN, GPN Forum

Penny qualified as a nurse in 2001 and started her career in Medical Assessment and later Accident and Emergency at a busy district hospital. She then spent time working at a teaching hospital in Sydney, Australia before returning to the UK and securing a role as a District Nurse. Following a PCT restructuring, she undertook a six-month Practice Nurse Apprenticeship and moved into general practice where she worked for 18 years leading and managing the nursing team across two sites in a large town centre practice in Suffolk. In addition, she was on the committee of the local Primary Care Nurse Forum and was nurse representative for her local PCN where she ensured that the voice of the nursing team was fairly represented and highlighted issues that may affect future service delivery.

Currently Penny is working for a not-for-profit organisation owned by 57 G.P Practices as Clinical Effectiveness Lead and Lead for Advanced Practice. She stills works clinically within General Practice one day a week.

Penny Sibthorpe – Committee Member of RCN, GPN Forum

Alison Hopkins – CEO, Accelerate CIC

Alison is Chief Executive of Accelerate Community Interest Company. Alison received an MBE for Services to Nursing in 2018.

Based in East London, Accelerate provides complex wound and lymphoedema services across London and the South East. Starting as a District Nurse, Alison has been in the tissue viability nursing specialism since 1989 and has an MSc in Psychology and Health.

Her passion remains the creative use of compression therapy within leg ulcer management, the concerns around sub-optimal use and associated patient harm and quality of life issues for all patients.

She continues to successfully raise the profile of complex wounds and lymphoedema within the long term conditions agenda. Alison held the position of Chair and Trustee for the Tissue Viability Society (2010-14) and was awarded the TVS Fellowship Award. Alison is also a Fellow of the Queens Nursing Institute.

Alison Hopkins, CEO, Accelerate CIC

Katy Smyth – Academy Teacher, Accelerate CIC and RCN GPN Forum Co-Chair

Since qualifying as a registered nurse, Kathryn has worked in a variety of posts across both primary and secondary care. Kathryn’s professional interests lie in the community setting, particularly general practice where she worked as a practice nurse for many years. After completing her specialist practitioner General Practice Nurse postgraduate diploma in 2007, she became a practice teacher and avid promoter of educational opportunities within practice nursing, focusing her master’s dissertation on the subject area.

Kathryn taught as an ad hoc lecturer on the general practice nurse foundation course before taking up a full-time teaching post at the University of Central Lancashire in 2016. Kathryn currently works as an Academy Teacher at Accelerate, a social enterprise providing specialist wound and lymphoedema care.

Kathryn joined the RCN as a student nurse and became a member of the GPN forum committee in January 2017. She is a Queen’s Nurse and an active member of her local GPN forum. Kathryn has contributed to a chapter in the 3rd edition of The Textbook of Non-Medical Prescribing (Nuttall & Rutt-Howard, 2020) and has been published in several nursing journals. She is a member of the Association of General Practice Nurse Educators and a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

Katy Smyth – Academy Teacher, Accelerate CIC and RCN GPN Forum Co-Chair


18.45 – 18.50 RCN GPN Forum – introduction

18.50 – 19.00 Alison Hopkins – introduction to Legs Matter and the 10 Point Plan

19.00 – 19.20 Katy Smyth & Alison Hopkins – The specific role of GPNs and primary care in providing immediate and necessary care for lower leg wounds

19.20 – 19.30 Q&A

Register here