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Karen Thwaite


Karen Thwaite
Case Manager
North West

Karen qualified as a Registered General Nurse in 1992. She began her career working in acute medicine, including care of patients who had experienced CVA; brain haemorrhage; diagnosis of multiple sclerosis and motor neurone disease and was responsible for the day to day care of allocated patients, working towards rehabilitation goals and safe discharge. As part of this role Karen’s key achievements included system improvements, a Princes Trust award, management of production and promotion of hospital PREP folder and secondment to clinical audit, where Karen worked on improvements to the hospital discharge process. This role allowed Karen to develop skills of assessment, goal planning and knowledge of neurological rehabilitation.  


From this Karen moved to elderly care, assessing and implementing holistic care for patients unable to self-care, she worked on a 30 bed nursing unit before being seconded to another unit for 3 months to assist in improving its running.


After completion of the N11 in Sept 2000, Karen was internally promoted to the post of junior sister on the Elderly Mentally Infirm unit, working with patients with dementia and challenging behaviours. Patients were at various stages of dementia, and needed individualised plans to remain as independent as possible for as long as possible. Many needed total care. Karen advanced her ability to evaluate a client’s individualised needs in this role.


Karen then took up position of Senior Nurse General Health in Regency Hospitals two mental health rehabilitation hospitals. Karen was initially recruited as a general nurse to oversee patients’ physical health care in response to concerns highlighted by national government reports.


This was a new post and Karen was awarded mental health nurse of the year by The Nursing Times magazine in 2006 for her work in setting up systems to ensure comprehensive screening, monitoring and promotion of patients’ physical health. The judges felt that “this project was an innovative idea well executed”.


Karen’s role progressed, allowing her to demonstrate her leadership skills and become a highly effective communicator as the role extended to include: patient health and wellbeing, including setting up of systems to monitor and promote this; formation of patient centred management plans; formation of links and meetings with relevant professionals; production of reports for care reviews and discharges; production of in house questionnaires on patient satisfaction and annual reports; Infection prevention and control; introduction of audit and surveillance, ensuring compliance with national documents; formulating and delivering staff training; medication management; production and delivery of annual training; overseeing staff training, supervision and appraisal.


Karen’s most recent position has been for a private mental health organisation providing private 1:1 nursing care in the community. Her role was to provide nursing care for adults with mental health problems at home. Karen provided support to clients and their family members either during a period of crisis, as part of aftercare following an inpatient admission, or on a long term basis.


Karen worked mostly with clients with eating disorders and dementia and was the lead nurse for most of the clients, practising reflectively to try to optimise their progress and completed risk assessments; care plans; reports for members of the MDT; and accompanied clients to meetings. Karen is always organised in her approach to care planning and risk management. She is rigorous in ensuring risk management is adhered to and applied in an effective manner. Key achievements included being asked to contribute to improvement of paperwork and the staff training plan.


Karen is now a case manager for Tania Brown Ltd. Karen has extensive nursing experience and is able to apply these skills in a range of diverse clinical situations and work with clients with complex injury, including those with neurological and behavioural disorders. She is very effective in applying her nursing skills in the management of day to day situations and is regarded as clear thinking and decisive in the management of such circumstances. She is always alert to ways to improve care provision for her clients.


Karen is an effective communicator and has a history of establishing very good therapeutic relationships with clients and their family members. This includes situations which have been at times most challenging. Karen applies attention to detail and clarity to her record keeping which is of a high standard as is her report writing. This is reflected in her clinical notes and written communication with team members.


Registered General Nurse


Royal College of Nursing