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1 March 2000

SCHOOL NURSES AWARDED 20,000 FOR SCHOOL HEALTH PROJECTS

Two school nurses - one from Coventry and the other from Huddersfield - have been awarded 10,000 each for development projects into the future of school nursing.

The School Nurse Innovation Awards - the first of their kind - have been made by the Department of Health and the Community Practitioners' and Health Visitors' Association (CPHVA). The DoH provided the finance, while the CPHVA administered the awards.

Lynnette Calcott is a school nurse with Coventry Healthcare NHS Trust and her project is on developing the team leader role for school nurses, with reference to mental health initiatives with young children.

Colette Hallas, a school nurse with the Huddersfield NHS Trust, will be conducting a project on how best to target school nurse resources, taking into account the individual needs of schools.

The CPHVA's Professional Officer for School Health, Pat Jackson said: "The proposals from both the applicants were impressive and imaginative. Their project should enable a better understanding of how the school health agenda should develop in the future."

"The issues facing school nurses currently include a new proposed role for them as team leaders of healthcare professionals working to a uniform national standard, targeting resources on areas of greatest concern, such as drug abuse and teenage pregnancy."

Katrina McNamara, Nursing Officer (Child Health) at the Department of Health said: "School nurses have a valuable role in improving the health of school age children, including mental health."

"Coventry and Huddersfield are putting into action the vision in 'Making a Difference' which is for school nurses to lead teams ands develop their public health role. Congratulations."

The projects should be completed by the autumn.

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NOTE TO NEWS EDITORS

For further information, please contact:

Pat Jackson 0498 531 027
Shaun Noble Press Officer (020) 7939 7043 mobile 0468 69 39 40

It is not known, at this stage, whether the awards will be continued in 2001.

CPHVA press releases can be seen on the MSF web site: www.msf.org.uk

The CPHVA is an autonomous professional section of the Manufacturing, Science and Finance union. The CPHVA represents 18,000 health visitors, school nurses, practice nurses and registered nurses working in the community in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.

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