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Neonatal Ward Sister/Charge Nurse

Portsmouth Hospitals University NHS Trust
£35,392 to £42,618 a year
Closing date
30 Sep 2023
Ready to be part of something extraordinary? Where the smallest steps for our patients and their families can be their biggest moments.

Portsmouth Hospitals Neonatal Intensive Care Unit are excited to be able to expand their senior nursing team and currently have vacancies for experienced registered neonatal nurses. As a neonatal team we work together tirelessly, to provide comprehensive, compassionate, individualised care and support to our babies and their families, which are then realised in the outstanding outcomes we achieve for our babies (NNAP 2022).

As a team, we have a clear vision for our future, to ensure we offer all staff the best opportunities within their career. We are lifelong learners and we are here to support and encourage you to expand your experience and knowledge of neonatal care.

Main duties of the job

Working on a Level 3 Bliss accredited tertiary neonatal intensive care unit you would experience caring for some of the most complex and pioneering medical care, including total body cooling, HFOV, Nitric Oxide Therapy and Laser ROP.

You will also have access to extended role development in retrieval and neonatal life support, alongside rotational opportunities in Neonatal Outreach, Family Integrated and developmental care, Infant feeding, Education and Research teams.

We know that the secret to our success is through investment in our team, and so in return for your commitment and enthusiasm, we promise you:
  • Fully supported Induction and Orientation programme tailored to your needs.
  • Supportive career development, including opportunities to experience rotations across our service.
  • Access to MSc, postgraduate pathways and continuing professional development at Southampton and Portsmouth Universities.
  • Advanced Leadership and Management training programmes with coaching support whether this is moving into a senior clinical role, or as a future leader in the NHS, we are here to support you on this path.
  • A focus on staff wellbeing and emotional support, including access to our on site wellness centre and training, including emotional resilience.
  • Flexible working opportunities.
  • NHS benefits, including Pension and Discount Schemes.

About us

The Trust is committed to driving excellence in care for our patients and communities and was rated good by the Care Quality Commission report published 2020 and became a University Hospital. We are ranked as the third in the country for research embedding education and training across the organisation and we continuously strive to achieve our core values which are at the heart of everything we do. The Trusts main hub is the Queen Alexandra Hospital, starting life as a military hospital over a century ago and now one of the largest hospitals on the south coast and you may have seen us on the TV series Nurses on the Ward. The Trust provides comprehensive secondary care and specialist services to a local population of 675,000 people across South East Hampshire. The Trust employs over 8,000 staff and are #ProudtobePHU our patients come from all walks of life and so do we. We hire great people from a wide variety of backgrounds, not just because its the right thing to do, but because it makes our hospital stronger. If you share our values and our enthusiasm for providing outstanding care and support for patients, colleagues and our community you will find a home at PHU. In recruiting for our team, we welcome the unique contributions that you can bring in terms of your education, opinions, culture, ethnicity, race, sex, gender identity and expression, nation of origin, age, languages spoken, veterans status, colour, religion, disability, sexual orientation and beliefs.

Job description

Job responsibilities

1. In the absence of the senior ward sister lead, co-ordinate the nursing team and taking responsibility for the management and organisation of the clinical area.

2. Through effective leadership ensure the clinical team deliver a safe, effective, responsive, caring and well-led service where compassion is embedded and a positive patient experience is achieved.

3. Provide professional clinical and managerial leadership to nursing and act as a professional role model.

4. A highly skilled clinical expert with specialised knowledge in caring for patients and their carers.

Key Responsibilities:

  • Promote and set high standards of professional nursing care and maintain the delivery of quality care within the trust policies, protocols and guidelines. Implement the trust values and beliefs ensuring they are embedded into everyday practice and evaluate their impact on the patients experience.
  • Provide professional nursing leadership to staff within sphere of clinical responsibility. Lead and motivate staff by giving clear direction and setting achievable objectives through APDR process.
  • Responsible for the assessment of care needs, the development, implementation and evaluation of programmes of care on a day to day basis.
  • Maintain a high visible presence within the clinical area ensuring that patients, visitors, healthcare staff and the multidisciplinary team, have access to senior staff at all times. Act as an effective professional role model and expert clinician.
  • With the Senior Sister/Charge Nurse contribute to the ward/department philosophy and models of care to ensure that all policies and procedures are implemented. Ensure that all staff understand the significance of this philosophy to practice, monitoring its impact on the patient experience.
  • Ensure that all nursing issues relating to the implementation of patient quality and safety are addressed on the ward/department. This includes monitoring and evaluating standards of care by the clinical team and providing regular feedback to the ward team on the standards of nursing care.
  • Implement evidence based practice, initiate, manage and evaluate changes that lead to improved and high standards of care and in particular any service changes following feedback from patients.
  • Communicating, influencing and working with the multidisciplinary team in different ways to improve quality of care, and informed clinical decisions. Promote innovation and participate in benchmarking and quality audits to measure effectiveness of current practices.
  • In collaboration with other areas and the Senior Sister/Charge Nurse, improve and maintain standards of fundamental nursing care, using tools such as the Portsmouth Bundle.
  • In collaboration with members of the multidisciplinary team, ensure that the users of the service and their families have a positive experience and using feedback (Elephant Surveys, Family and Friends Test, concerns and complaints) evaluate patient processes and pathways of care are redesigned as required.
  • Create a culture for learning and development that will sustain person-centred safe and effective care.
  • Support junior colleagues in the provision of direct care facilitate learning in and from practice at the same time as working alongside or undertaking a care plan review if an when a serious incident or complaint has occurred.
  • Ensure concerns raised by patients and their families are dealt with in an open, honest and transparent way, quickly and effectively, in line with trust policies, procedures and Duty of Candour legislation.
  • Ensuring that accurate and timely nursing records are maintained, monitoring standards and taking corrective action as required.
  • Ensure all staff in the clinical area are competent in the use of medical devices/equipment and have access to training and monitoring compliance.

  • Responsible for the organisation and management of the ward/department when on duty.
  • Have an overall view of the intensity of the workload and the experience of the staff and act to utilise the nursing skill mix on duty to ensure the nursing cover achieves a high standard of nursing care.
  • With the Senior Sister/Charge Nurse use the Trust Ward Accreditation Programme, an essential part of the organisations Safe and Effective Care Framework to strive towards achieving excellence for the clinical area. Key quality indicators embedded in the framework, alongside trust peer reviews and focused CQC style reviews will be tools to measure the ward/department performance and identify key areas for improvement.
  • Manage the discharge and transfer of patients by using the SAFER discharge bundle and other discharge policies to ensure a seamless transition from hospital to home or other community care services.
  • Actively contribute to achieving the clinical governance goals/targets set by the trust and department and comply with reporting schedules for monitoring and reporting on clinical outcomes.
  • Implement the Nursing Strategy by setting clear achievable objectives for staff who the post holder manages into annual performance and development reviews and evaluate performance.
  • Robust roster management taking into consideration the skill mix and inform senior sister/charge nurse of any issues as they arise. Working with the Senior Sister/Charge Nurse contribute to the recruitment, selection and retention of the nursing workforce.
  • With the Senior Sister/Charge Nurse look a succession plan for any hard to recruit posts and use Talent Management skills to identify key staff for further development.
  • Be proactive in the prevention and management of complaints (formal and those via Patient Advice and Liaison Service) and when they occur investigate and respond in a timely manner. Use any learning to share widely with the multidisciplinary team and to improve care delivery.
  • Responsible for the management of staff performance and attendance in line with trust policies.
  • Promote the health and well-being of staff, patients and their carers.
  • Comply and promote compliance with Trust policies and guidelines e.g. Health and Safety, Clinical Risk and Infection Control.
  • Take appropriate action to address unexpected changes and situations, informing the Senior Sister/Charge Nurse or other if unable to resolve.
  • Contribute to the ward/department pay and non-pay budgets to ensuring good housekeeping and economic use of resources.
  • Delegate duties and tasks as appropriate to team members and evaluate the outcomes. Ensure efficient bed management.
  • Work closely with partners i.e. Carillion, resolving any issues regarding cleanliness, provision of food and maintenance of the environment. Ensure staff are aware how to escalate when issues cannot be resolved.

Research and Education

  • Contribute to a research culture within the nursing team to identify current knowledge and deliver evidence based care.
  • Support local research teams, actively contribute to local department multidisciplinary audits, represent the clinical area at governance meetings and highlight areas for change.
  • Liaise with the relevant research nurse to ensure patients are identified to take part in clinical research studies and research is delivered safely on the ward.
  • Report research activity as standard practice and as part of the ward accreditation process.
  • Embed in the team culture the concept of recruitment to clinical trials which is a national performance indicator.

  • Ensure staff under the post holder leadership has an annual personal development review and set achievable objectives. Feed agreed development opportunities into the department training plan.
  • Create an environment that is conducive to learning and encourage team open-ness so that an evidence based approach is utilised and applied to nursing care.
  • Act as a mentor and coach for student nurses, support staff and junior team members
  • Commit to and encourage a culture where students receive quality placements supported by mentorship and teaching from the multi-professional team.
  • With the Senior Sister/Charge Nurse ensure student mentors and sign off mentors within the clinical area are up-to-date with NMC standards, including annual updates and undertaking triennial reviews.
  • Responsible for ensuring that ward/department staff undertake essential training.
  • Ensure there are processes in place for the orientation of new/temp staff and preceptorship for junior nurses.

Person Specification

Skills and Knowledge


  • Clinically competent.
  • Clinical decision making skills.
  • Excellent communication and interpersonal skills.
  • Effective leadership and team building skills.
  • Organisational skills and forward planning.
  • Flexibility (To work within Neonatal Community Outreach Team, Practice Education Team, Research Team or other Link nurse roles).
  • Able to support development of others.
  • Coaching and mentoring skills.
  • Critical appraisal skills.
  • Strong customer service skills.
  • IT literate.
  • Understanding of the principles and application of effective budgetary management.
  • Understanding of the principles and application of effective staff / HR management.
  • Understanding of the theory and application of Clinical Governance.
  • Demonstrable exper
    Any attachments will be accessible after you click to apply.


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