Nicola Haslam

Patient and Community Engagement Facilitator

Core Team

My role

I joined the Academy of Research and Improvement in September 2019 as a Patient and Community Engagement Facilitator. My role is to support the development of patient engagement and to ensure the patient voice is at the heart of everything we do.

One of my first tasks on joining the team was to carry out an engagement mapping exercise across the whole of Solent NHS Trust. In working closely with all service lines I was able to gain a greater understanding of what type of engagement was occurring and to reflect on how to make patient engagement a bigger part of the work we do from improving service design, participation in Solent events, to expanding our Side by Side network. 

My responsibilities

Some of my day to day responsibilities include maintaining relations with our Side by Side members, contributing content to our fortnightly newsletter ‘Staying Connected’, facilitating the involvement of people in improvement projects, designing engagement resources, liaising with and supporting services to engage patients more and capturing stories from people on their experiences during the pandemic.

My background

Originally from Portsmouth, I moved to London where I lived for four years and worked in community engagement programmes getting disadvantaged young people and those with mental health problems into creative community activities. Having returned to Portsmouth I worked at the QA Hospital liaising with patients and families and facilitating their access to community and healthcare resources. I subsequently moved to Solent NHS Trust where I developed as interest in Quality Improvement through the Academy’s internal workshops. This sparked a desire to learn more about QI and patient engagement and I am pleased to say I ended up working for the team.

Why I love my job

For me it is really important to feel that what I do in my job can make a difference to others. I enjoy being part of projects that empower people to have a say in the way that services affect them. It is satisfying to see how by involving individuals or groups of people, we can improve the quality of care our Trust delivers. Working with a very supportive team is great and the variety in my job also keeps me on my toes! No two days are ever the same and being given the ability to work creatively is something I value in my role.

More about me

Outside of work I enjoy spending time with family and friends, travelling when I get the opportunity, yoga, going to gigs and festivals, regular trips to the theatre and the occasional stand-up comedy evening!