All posts by gbellis

Lara’s top-tips for healthcare professionals during the festive period

The festive period is a time for people to unwind, relax and enjoy the company of those they love the most. It’s a time when people also like to spread love and joy and reflect on the year gone by, all whilst living by the phrase ‘eat, drink and be merry’.

However, working in the healthcare industry means that the festive period may not always be like it is in the films for you. It might not be magical, cheerful, and about spreading love and joy. It can be quite lonely, sad, and distressing.

Whilst others are visiting friends and family, you could be looking after a patient in ICU whose family hasn’t been able to visit them due to Covid.

You could be holding the hand of a patient who is suffering with their mental health and doesn’t know how they can carry on, whilst others are visiting the wonderful Christmas markets.

You’re visiting a sick, elderly patient at home whose only form of human contact is you, whilst your friends are drinking mulled wine at a carol concert.

Now, we know these are things you experience all year round, but they become even more difficult at this time of year, leaving you feeling deflated, burnt out, and distressed.

We wish there were something we could do to make this time of year easier for healthcare professionals, but unfortunately, there is very little we can do other than be there to support our Medical Marvels and do our bit to take away as much of the stress as possible for them.

However, our fantastic Clinical Lead, Lara Lamb who is an experienced Nurse, has kindly provided us with her top tips for working during the festive period.

Lara’s festive top tips…

  • Do not get hung up on sticking to a specific day to celebrate Christmas. As we all know, Healthcare Professionals can’t always have Christmas Day, Boxing Day, and New Year off
  • Make time for you and your family
  • Look out for your colleagues and be kind – the holiday period isn’t a positive time for everyone, so take the time to be kind to others
  • Get plenty of sleep and get the rest you need. Covid isn’t over yet, so we may still be facing staff shortages over the festive period
  • Last, but not least – make sure you enjoy yourself when you get the opportunity! Leave work behind and remember you deserve to enjoy yourself too!

We would like to take this as an opportunity to thank all healthcare professionals for their bravery and the sacrifices they have already and continue to make for us. Bluestones Medical & Bluestones Medical Complex Care really do appreciate YOU!

If you would like to get in touch with us, you can do so by calling 01244 555 020 (north), 01633 499 689 (south), 01244 445 072 (Complex Care)

Bluestones Medical Complex Care awarded CQC Registration

Last week, Bluestones Medical Complex Care was awarded our CQC Registration! This registration means that we can demonstrate to our clients and service users that we are providing a service that meets essential standards of quality and safety.

Darren Logue - Managing Director - Bluestones Medical Complex Care

Darren Logue, Managing Director of Bluestones Medical Complex Care said: “It is a privilege for my team and I at Bluestones Medical Complex Care to achieve and be awarded our recent CQC registration.”

“Now that we have this registration, our duty, vocation, and mission are to change and save more lives and raise the standards of care given to those who need us most.”

“Bluestones Medical Complex Care was born out of a passion and hunger to change the standards of care given to those who fail to have a voice in their own care needs. To ensure that the care these individuals receive is person-centred, personalised to their care needs and to enhance their lives, and the lives of their loved ones, for the better.”

“Being CQC registered means Bluestones Medical Complex Care will be audited, inspected, and monitored continuously by the CQC – so that our care is core to their key lines of enquiry framework.”

“Once again – this registration is a privilege for us all at Bluestones Medical Complex Care – as we continue on our mission to save and change as many lives as we can through the highest standards of care.”

Being awarded this registration means that we can accelerate our efforts in supporting our service users to live their best possible life, whilst supporting our Nurses, Support Workers, and Healthcare Assistants to be in a rewarding and fulfilling role.

To keep up to date with everything we get up to here at Bluestones Medical Complex Care, please follow us on LinkedIn & Facebook

To view some of our current Complex Care roles, click HERE

Bluestones Medical & Bluestones Medical Complex Care becomes a climate positive workforce

Bluestones Medical & Bluestones Medical Complex Care is delighted to announce that we have taken steps to become a Climate Positive Workforce. 

Thanks to teaming up with Ecologi, and the work that they do, we have been able to do our bit in giving back to the planet.

Ecologi funds two different types of climate action: one is the planting of trees, and the other is supporting a wide range of climate projects such as reforestation, rainforest protection, supplying clean drinking water, wind turbines, solar power plants, and clean cooking stoves.

We’ve all seen the news surrounding COP26 which has highlighted more than ever before how vital it is for businesses to take action. By joining forces with Ecologi, all of our employees will have their carbon footprint mitigated. This includes all of their travel, energy use, food, and hobbies that occur inside or outside of the business.

This partnership also means we will be planting trees each month, which ultimately helps restore healthy forests in places such as Mozambique, Madagascar, and the UK.

We’re so excited to watch our forest grow! All of this work is a great eco recognition on our path to Net Zero, and it’s a source of climate hope.

To keep up to date with our progress, follow our Facebook, LinkedIn & Instagram pages.

Ask Annette: Revalidation Tips

Annette Leavy is the Clinical Manager here at Bluestones Medial, and we are so lucky to have her on the team. She has been nursing for over 20 years now, so she has plenty of nursing knowledge for us to tap into!

Revalidation is something that every single nurse must complete every three years. It can be time-consuming, but you can make things easier for yourself by planning ahead.

 We asked Annette what her top tips for revalidation are, and here is what she had to say: 

1. The first tip Annette gave was to write things down when they happen. She says writing a reflective statement ASAP when it is fresh in your mind will save you trying to remember it further down the line. We’ve been in a pandemic for almost two years now, so use the experiences you’ve been through as a starting point.

2. Annette said the best place to start is the NMC website if you need clear guidance, as they provide revalidation templates that essentially hold your hand through the process. You can find these templates HERE.

3. As you’re probably aware, you need to provide five reflective statements with five pieces of evidence to support them. Annette said you could use anything from an email from a manager to a letter or card from a patient. Evidence can be anything that says how good you are in your role.

4. Annette has advised that you check all your reflective statements, and the evidence you’re using to support them meets the NMC revalidation requirements. You can check this by clicking HERE.

5. Revalidation comes around every three years. We understand how busy you are but leaving things until the last minute is never helpful. However, you will receive a prompt just before yours is due. Annette suggested allocating time each week to sit down and spend time alone writing yours, with no distractions.

6. Did you know that if you require assistance in completing your revalidation, Annette offers 1-2-1 support to all our candidates in the North? We also have Lara, our Clinical Lead in the South, who provides the same service to our candidates in South Wales. Not only this, but they are also available to discuss your reflective practices with and act as your confirmer.

If you would like more information on revalidation or support from Annette, you can call us on 01244 555 020. Or, for our candidates in South Wales, you can speak to Lara by calling 01633 499 689.

Keep up to date with everything we get up to here at Bluestones Medical and Bluestones Medical Complex Care by following us on our Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram pages.

Lara Lamb becomes Bluestones Medical’s newest Clinical Lead!

Bluestones Medical is excited to introduce Lara Lamb as our newest clinical lead. Lara will be providing our candidates in South Wales with training and any clinical support they want/need.

Ensuring that our candidates receive the support they need and deserve is a priority of ours. Therefore, by having Lara on the team, who is a qualified Nurse, we are able to provide our candidates with expert clinical advice. Not only this, but Lara is also a candidate of ours, so she also knows what it is like to be a Bluestones Medical agency nurse.

We asked Lara a few questions so we can all get to know her more and you can read her answers below.

Three words to describe yourself?

Approachable, vivacious, adventurous.

What’s your favourite film?

About Time.

Who do you admire most and why?

My daughter. This year has been quite challenging for us as a family, and even though she is only 6 – she has been a little star and battled through as though nothing has ever happened.

Name three people you’d invite to a dinner party (alive or dead)

Freddie Mercury, my gorgeous fiancé and my grandparents (never met them)! I know, slightly more than three…

What do you do best?

My absolute best to help people.

What’s your pet peeve?

Poor spelling and grammar.

What’s your favourite drink?

Disaronno. Prefer the spirits!

In your own words, tell us a bit about your background.

Started as a HCA (a long time ago). Decided to do my training and continued on the nurse bank throughout – picking up shifts to help make ends meet whilst being a student. Qualified in 2011 and mainly worked in the acute sector of the NHS. Experience spans from A&E through to Dialysis and Trauma.

Bluestones Medical Crowned Charity Football Champions!

On Friday 8th October, Bluestones Medical laced up their boots and took to the football pitch to challenge our rivals, Bluestones Investment Group in a charity football match. The game was set up to support our efforts in raising money for the Hospice of the Good Shepherd, our chosen charity for the year.

The match took place at Goals in Chester, and it’s safe to say it didn’t disappoint. There was plenty of excitement surrounding the much-anticipated game, and some competitive words and conversations were exchanged between the teams in the run-up (all said in jest, of course!)

Bluestones Medical were repping yellow and black, whilst Bluestones Investment Group chose blue to be their team colour. Both teams were fighting to lift our brand new ‘Bluestones Charity Football Champions’ trophy and neither of them wanted to go home empty handed.

With supporters from both teams surrounding the pitch, the 5-a-side game kicked off. There was a huge sense of competitiveness from both sides, with the game getting a little rough at times. However, a little bit of friendly competition never did anybody any harm, right?!

In the first 15 minutes of the first half, it was fair to say the Bluestones Investment Group were the better team, and they quickly went ahead. Medical showed signs of tiredness early in the game, but it wasn’t long before they found their feet and we’re able to get the ball in the back of the net several times to take the lead at half-time.

After a much needed 10-minute break, the teams stepped foot on the AstroTurf to battle out the last 25 minutes. By this point, Medical we’re really picking up the pace and not only showed off some impressive skills, but also some fantastic teamwork, which seemed to do the trick as they continued to press ahead of their rivals. It was goals galore in the second half, but Bluestones Investment Group didn’t give up. They also managed to score some impressive goals, but this simply wasn’t enough to beat us, and we went on to win with an impressive 15-10 score line.

It was a tough and tiring game, but the team worked hard and came together to bring home the trophy. We asked Raul, what it felt like to lift the trophy and here is what he had to say…

“The feeling was like no other. It was amazing to get to lift the trophy after battling for 50 hard minutes against the Bluestones Investment Group army. All the hard work paid off, as the trophy now sits in our beautiful office where it always belonged “.

Start player Ginnie makes her football debut!

A HUGE thank you to all the players and supporters who took part and donated to the Hospice!

Follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram to keep up to date with everything we get up to here at Bluestones Medical.

Julie Rogers joins Bluestones Medical as a Clinical Lead!

Bluestones Medical is delighted to introduce Julie Rogers as our new Clinical Lead!

Julie has been representing Bluestones Medical as one of our community nurses for a while now and has built a fantastic relationship with the team.

We saw hiring Julie to be one of our wonderful Clinical Leads as an incredible opportunity not only for the business but for all our Medical Marvels too, as we will all now have access to her amazing skills and expertise.

We asked Julie a few questions so we could get to know her more & here is what she had to say…

Three words to describe yourself?
Tenacious, honest, and compassionate.

What’s your favourite film?
Before sunrise.

Who do you admire most and why?
Barack Obama. He is warm, he cares, an amazing orator and leader, and wants to guide people to a better world. He overcame cultural discrimination in the world of American politics to make history.

Name three people you’d invite to a dinner party (alive or dead)
Barack Obama, Nelson Mandala, and Mother Teresa.

What do you do best?
Live my own truth.

What’s your pet peeve?
Bad manners.

What’s your favourite drink?
A glass of Champagne.

​​​​​​​In your own words, tell us a bit about yourself .
I am a registered nurse with dual clinical experience both in various hospital settings and in the community district nursing teams. My mother was a nurse and my sister is also a Bluestones Medical Nurse.

Compassionate care runs in the family and I can honestly say, that without a doubt, nursing is the most privileged profession in the world.

Recently, I have been appointed clinical lead for Bluestones Medical and work within the office and at home conducting interviews and clinical support. Prior to this, I held various roles with a major high street building society, culminating in the role of district manager, responsible for borrowing and investment targets and staff management of 3 branches.

I was made redundant following the merger and acquisition of various lenders resulting in the building society becoming a major bank. At this point and following another major change in my life, I decided it was ‘now or never’ and decided to pursue my dream of becoming a Nurse.

I began my training in 2010 and in 2013 I qualified with a 1st Class BSc (Hons) Adult Nursing. For the last 7 years, I have worked full time plus as an agency nurse and feel this has developed my clinical skills, allowing me the opportunity to work in clinical settings, I would not have otherwise been exposed to.

With this amount of experience, it was extremely important to me that I was represented by an agency who had my best interests at heart, who look after and genuinely care about their nurses and are constantly looking to improve and have an open and caring approach with the ever-changing landscape of healthcare.

In taking a current practicing nurse in-house, which is unique amongst agencies, I am able to represent my colleagues and their needs, which prove invaluable for the outstanding service Bluestones Medical offers.

Outside of my working life, I have two daughters aged 23 and 17 whom I am extremely proud of. I also have a Cockapoo puppy named Lola, with the longest eyelashes in the world!!!

She is now 17 weeks old and has brought so much joy to our family. In addition, I also founded and own a business called Essence of Soul which is a real passion for me. It encompasses my life coaching and mentoring services underpinned with holistic modalities and corporate well-being service, all of which is particularly relevant in the last couple of years as the world has edged slowly through a global pandemic, leaving a lot of people lost and searching for meaning.

In what little spare time I have, I enjoy playing golf, theatre and love horse-racing, cricket, rugby, and football.

What does it mean to be a Bluestones Medical Marvel?

Being an agency nurse means you’ll rarely be working in one place for a significant period of time. As a result, you’ll regularly be working with new people, you’ll often be the ‘newbie’ and you may sometimes find it difficult to know where you belong.

We strongly believe that the benefits of being an agency nurse far outweigh the negatives, but we’re not oblivious to the fact that it doesn’t come without its challenges. We know, from speaking to our nurses every day, that it can be difficult to find your sense of belonging.

Here at Bluestones Medical, we believe that we have built something different. Something unique that we’re proud of. This is, that everyone involved with Bluestones Medical, from our incredible nurses to our consultants, right through to our cleaner, Brenda, is part of something special. Something that goes beyond a job role. Something that gives them a purpose and the knowledge that, without them, Bluestones Medical wouldn’t be the same.

Everyone who is part of Bluestones Medical is important, recognised, and very much needed. We feel privileged to be in a position that allows us to support the NHS to care for those who are most in need. To help families hold on to loved ones and to ensure that those at the end of their life don’t feel alone. This is our purpose. This is what gives us a sense of belonging.

You can read what two of our brilliant nurses had to say when we asked them to tell us about their experience of being a Bluestones Medical Marvel by clicking THIS LINK.

When you become a Bluestones Medical Marvel, no matter if you’re a Community Psychiatric Nurse, A&E Nurse, or a Scrub Nurse, you become part of our purpose. You also become our priority, meaning we will work tirelessly to find you not only the job role but the pay and the work-life balance that you’ve always wanted.

We want all our Medical Marvels to wake up and feel proud to put on their Bluestones uniform. We also want to hear about your day, whether it was good or bad, we want you to know you can call us anytime and we’ll be there. We want to build strong relationships with you, that goes beyond us just being your employer. We LOVE getting to know you, your hobbies, and your interests, it makes our job so much more enjoyable. But most of all, when you’re wearing your Bluestones Medical uniform, we want you to know that this is where you belong. You belong at Bluestones Medical and are a vital part of the team. When you work with us, we never want you to feel alone and if you do, just know we are only ever a phone call away.

So yes, it may sometimes be difficult to know where you belong when you’re moving from trust to trust and role to role, but when you feel like this, just remember that you are part of the Bluestones Medical community, and this is exactly where you belong.

You call or text your consultant at any time and they will be happy to chat with you. We’re always here and we’ll always have your back.

Phone: 01244 555 020
Email: medical@bluestonesmedical.co.uk 

Bluestones Medical launches new £1,000 referral scheme!

Bluestones Medical is delighted to offer their Medical Marvels a £1,000 referral bonus!

To receive the bonus, all they must do is refer X3 band 5,6 or 7 Mental Health Practitioners.

The scheme has been launched to support our clients with the ever-increasing demand for these Mental Health Practitioners. Several of them have come to us in desperation for staff, so we want to ensure we’re doing all we can to support them!

Here’s the criteria for qualifying for the £1,000 payment:

  • We’re offering £1000 to anyone who refers X3 MH practitioners
  • All 3 must be a band 5,6 or 7 MH practitioner
  • All 3 referrals must be able to commit to at least a 3-month contract
  • Payment will be made once all 3 referrals have worked the first full week of their contract

It really is that simple!

If you want to earn your £1,000, you can do so by making your referrals HERE.

If you would like to learn more about the scheme, you can call us anytime on 01244 555 020.

You can view and apply to some of our current job opportunities HERE.

Bluestones Medical raises £1,572 for local Hospice

On Saturday 14th August, some of the Bluestones Medical climbed Snowdon in aid of the Hospice of the Good Shepherd and raised an AMAZING £1,572!

The weather may have been drizzly, but it didn’t stop the team from climbing to the top in 2 hours and 12 minutes.

As you may know, the Bluestones Medical team voted for the Hospice of the Good Shepherd to be the charity we support over the next year. Our target is to raise £11,000, which is how much it costs to run the Hospice for just 1 day!

Not only did we raise an incredible amount of money for a fantastic cause, but the team had a brilliant day (even if it did mean meeting at the office at 6am)!

Thank you to everyone who wished us well & donated to our JustGiving page. Your support means the world to us!