“I cannot thank the TVS enough” says Melissa Forde, TVS sponsored place winner!

Yvonne FlemingMelissa Forde was one of the TVS – 2016 The Conference sponsored place winners, here’s what she had to say about the 2 days…

“I was over the moon to have received one of the highly coveted sponsored places for undergrad students to the TVS 2016 conference, which this year, was held in Cardiff.

Myself and fellow Napier student, Yvonne Fleming, had applied agreeing to share the prize if only one of us was lucky enough to be chosen. This would have allowed us both to attend and share the cost. Well you can just imagine our delight when both of us received our emails!

My awareness of tissue viability as a topic in nursing surfaced in my first year of study at Edinburgh Napier University. After our introductory lecture on skin I was interested to find out more about this amazing and often underrated organ. Further reading led me to the topic of wound healing and since then my interest has grown.

Students at Napier are lucky enough to have a former TV Nurse Specialist and fantastic lecturer Alisa Sharpe as our guide into tissue viability and wound management.

Highlights of the 2016 TVS conference included meeting Heidi Sandoz and the TVS Trustees, all of whom where welcoming and congratulated us on our sponsored places.

I enjoyed all the talks but some that really grabbed my interest were ‘Standardising outcome measurements in wound care trials: the need for consensus’ by the fantastic Dr Georgina Gethin from NUIGalway and ‘The patient experience’ given by Fran Spratt. Both speakers were passionate and engrossing.

Through my own experience of wound care during hospital and community placements, I myself can see a need for the standardisation of wound measurements, however I also recognise the difficulty of attaining this.

Andrew, the patient who’s experiences we were learning about was unable to attend however Fran Spratt was on hand to give his talk and as she had worked closely with Andrew she was able to give a impassioned account of his journey and healing process, which is still on-going.

We also learned a lot about new and upcoming treatments and tools on offer to TVNs by interacting with the attendees at each of the exhibition stalls.

A social highlight of the conference was the dinner held at the National Museum of Cardiff. This was spectacular for me on two fronts. Not only were we able to meet all the trustees and attendees on a more informal and social level, while also having and amazing meal, we were given the opportunity to peruse the art gallery and a small section of the history museum. I have a keen interest in archaeology and ancient history so this was very interesting!

I cannot thank the TVS enough for what can only be described as a unique and informative experience for a student nurse with a passion for tissue viability”.