Introducing Chartered Physiotherapist & Expert Witness, Katharine Atkin... I recently...
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RN, BSc (Hons) Independent Practitioner
I qualified as an Advanced Nurse Practitioner (ANP) in 2010 and for over a decade I have been consolidating my skills and knowledge, working as an ANP in a busy GP surgery. Prior to this I spent many years gaining as much varied experience as possible in various nursing roles.
My first staff nurse job was on an acute surgical ward where I spent two years consolidating my training. I then worked on a paediatric ward for four months before moving to Canada where I spent my first year working on a surgical unit, then transferred to the emergency room where I successfully completed the Advanced Cardiovascular Life Support qualification. This enabled me to travel further and I secured a role as a nurse in a cruise company. I spent just over a year working for P&O/Princess cruises and enjoyed the challenge of carrying out my role with limited resources, sometimes days from land.
Following this I returned to the UK and worked as an agency nurse, initially in many of the A&E departments in and around London. I then changed direction and began working as a community nurse. From there I took a permanent role with a GP surgery and did all the necessary training to work as a practice nurse. I soon realised that working in this setting was right for me and in 2007 I began studying for an advanced practice degree.
In my current role I am responsible for seeing patients of all ages with a wide variety of undifferentiated health problems. This includes history taking, clinical assessment, ordering of tests, referral to secondary care, diagnosis, treatment and evaluation of care. I also manage and prescribe medication within my scope as an independent nurse prescriber.
Early in 2020 I was proud to be awarded the professional title of Queens Nurse. The prestigious Queen’s Nurse title is bestowed by community nursing charity the Queen’s Nursing Institute. It is a formal recognition that I am part of a professional network of nurses committed to delivering and leading outstanding care in the community.
During the early lockdowns of 2020 I realised there was a gap of information available to clinicians around social prescribing. To resolve this problem I set up a community interest company www.treacle.me. Treacle is a one stop service directory for the 20% of patients we see in primary care who need social rather than medical care and advice. It is now a fully commissioned service in two areas of the UK and runs with four staff members. In recognition of this work I was a finalist in the Royal College of Nurses, Community and Primary Care, Nurse of the Year award in 2023.
I accept instructions from both claimant and defendant solicitors and insurers. I have undergone formal training in the medico-legal process and am fully aware of my responsibilities under Civil Procedure Rules (CPR) pertaining to expert witnesses.