Discover the Altura difference

The Subject Matter Experts that we work with are just one part of our entire learning community

Quality learning content is key to engaging, informing and inspiring your staff to provide outstanding care. Alongside experts by experience from our learning community and our partners, Altura Learning also works with over 50 UK and international care sector experts to create our video courses. 

Experts come from a variety of leading organisations including the NHS, research Universities, Diabetes UK, European Academy of Nursing Scientists, Bradford Dementia Group, Stirling University Dementia Services Development Centre, National Back Exchange, NAPA and the Sepsis Trust, to name but a few.

Julie Letts
Director
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Julie Letts has a 37-year career in the public service and has a combined clinical, policy and ethics background. She worked as an Intensive Care Nurse Specialist and educator for 18 years. Another 18 years followed in senior policy roles including as Manager, Clinical Ethics and Policy, NSW Ministry of Health where her focus was a spectrum of ethically complex issues in clinical care, such as end of life. She has a Masters’ degree in Bioethics and is an Advisory Board member for the Centre for Agency, Values and Ethics at Macquarie University.

Jane Mackintosh
Clinical Nurse Consultant Palliative and End of Life Care
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“I am a Clinical Nurse Consultant working for NSW Health with a particular interest in palliative care education and improving end of life care in all settings. I have worked in Specialist Palliative Care roles in Australia and New Zealand since 1998 across acute hospital consultancy, inpatient hospice and community services. I hold a Masters in Palliative Care from Flinders University. Regarded as a clinical expert in the area of palliative and end of life care, I am able to provide complex consultancy to ensure that assessment, care planning and provision of safe clinical care for all patients with palliative and end of life care needs remains a priority.”

Mark Elliot
Training Consultant
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Mark Elliott is a Ngarrindjeri Aboriginal man whose family are the Trevorrow’s from the Coorong area of South Australia. Mark spent 6 years as the Aboriginal Community Development Officer for the Adelaide Hills Community Health Service (Country Health SA)and managed the Tumake Yande Aboriginal Elders Program in Murray Bridge SA. Most recently he worked as the Aboriginal Project Officer for the Catalyst Foundation (formally the Seniors Information Service SA part time until he retired in June 2017.

Mark has helped to organise major events in Mt Barker SA to celebrate NAIDOC and Reconciliation week winning a state NAIDOC award for best community event in 2010.

Mark was a member of the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Dementia Advisory Group (NATSIDAG) for Alzheimer’s Australia since its inception until it disbanded in 2015 and continues to have a passion for working in the area of dementia, especially within Aboriginal communities, has facilitated training in the Dementia Learning Resource for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Communities and spent two years developing and delivering the Strengthening Dementia Care in Indigenous Communities project for Alzheimer’s Australia South Australia in conjunction with the Aboriginal Health Council of SA.

Mark Chairs the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Ageing Advisory Group which is supported by the Australian Association of Gerontology and continues to deliver training in Aboriginal culture diversity.

Katie Airey
Aged Care Consultant
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Katie Airey has over 12 years’ experience in the Aged Care Industry. Katie is passionate about supporting residential aged care facilities to strive for excellence in consumer outcomes by motivating organisations to engage and participate in positive change.

Katie’s career has enabled her to work throughout Australia and internationally, allowing her to develop and deliver expertise in revenue management strategies, auditing, risk and compliance management, project and account management along with developing and delivering education and mentoring programs.

Jill Timms
Quality Assurance Manager
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Jill Timms is a qualified nurse and currently works as a Quality Assurance Manager for Peverel Court Care. Jill also runs a nurse consultancy ‘Helping Managers Manage’ where she is a Care Consultant for care homes requiring assistance in preparing for CQC/LA inspections. Prior to Jill establishing this business, she managed a care home for many years and was also an Area Manager for a care home group based in South East England. Jill enjoys keeping abreast of developments in the sector and sharing her knowledge across a range of areas related to nursing management in aged care.

Mike Betts
NSLHD Falls Prevention Coordinator
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Mike Betts is a Manual Handling Consultant and Director of  Mike Betts Training Ltd, a Manual Handling Consultancy and Health and Social Care Training Company based in Dunstable, England. Mike has a Masters Degree in Back Care Management from Loughborough University and is a co-author of the 5th edition of The Guide to the Handling of People, writing the Chapter on Managing Falls and the Falling Person. Mike has written extensively on Back Care and Management of the Falling Person and has presented at conferences in the UK, USA and Australia. Mike is also a former Chairman of National Back Exchange and has been a Registered Nurse for 29 years.  

 

Paul Creek
Consultant
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Paul Creek has provided Consulting Services to the Health and Aged Care Industries for the past 16 years across Australia, Asia and New Zealand with his Sydney based company, Creek Solutions.Paul consults in Hospitality Services Management predominantly in the areas of kitchen production and service, food safety/HACCP, laundry, cleaning and maintenance. He consults on the ideal design of new builds in aged and health care, hotel back of house including laundry, dirty utility rooms (DUR) and kitchens, and has been called on from organisations in Europe, UK, USA and Singapore for input into process management for support services. Managing infection control processes is another expertise of Paul’s and he is often sought after for advice on its control. An advocate for microfibre cleaning processes, Paul has led the industry in Australia with contemporary practices and was the first to introduce ozone into his organisation, a green initiative for energy and water savings to Australia.

John Taylor has over 45 years’ experience and accumulated knowledge related to the cleaning industry. Initially managing a large contract cleaning company, he then established a commercial cleaning products supply business. Following the sale of his business in 2017, John maintains an active role as a specialist consultant to this organisation. Over the last decade he has been closely involved in the aged and healthcare sectors as a cleaning advisor, with a particular emphasis on infection control and cross contamination. He was involved in the introduction of colour coding of cleaning equipment into the aged care, healthcare, hospitality, and retail sectors and was one of the pioneers with microfibre flat mopping in aged and healthcare. John strongly advocates for the importance of the cleaner’s role in breaking the contamination cycle, but particularly with our most vulnerable population in the aged care sector.

Dr Stephanie Oldroyd
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Stephanie qualified as a Clinical Psychologist in 2003 and has worked in the Milton Keynes Mental Health services ever since. Stephanie has specialised in older adults, mental health and dementia care since 2010. Stephanie became the Clinical Director of the Mental Health service in 2018 and continues in that role presently.

Fiona Hodson is a Pain Management Clinical Nurse Consultant with the Hunter Integrated Pain Service NSW, Australia, who has worked in all aspects of pain service delivery over the last 22 years. Fiona was president of the Australian Pain Society (APS) from 2017-2019 with a particular interest in pain in the elderly. During her tenure on the APS board, she coordinated the revision of the internationally recognised Pain in Residential Aged Care Facilities: Management Strategies, 2nd Edition (RACF2), as well as being a co-author.She is currently working collaboratively with the National Ageing Research Institute (NARI), on developing a Pain Management Guidelines Implementation Toolkit to align with the RACF2 pain guidelines. Fiona’s passion for advocating for people experiencing pain is evidenced by her ongoing clinical and consumer representation on various national committees and working parties and has been an active board member of Chronic Pain Australia (CPA) since 2010.

Fazeela Hafejee
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Fazeela Hafejee has over 20 years’ senior strategic leadership experience in the Health and Social Care field as a Social Worker. She qualified as one of the first independent Mental Capacity Act (IMCA) professionals in 2005. Fazeela’s social work experience gives her a unique perspective from which to develop rapport and build relationships with diverse clients. She has extensive experience of supporting individuals who need care and support, their families and/or carers and organisations to meet their needs. She is passionate about social justice, human rights, collective responsibility and respect for diversity and inclusion.

Penny Kraemer
Clinical Pharmacist
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“I have been an accredited pharmacist for over 20 years and have extensive experience in residential medication management reviews and assisting aged care facilities to achieve a high standard in medication management. I was a winner of the AACP Consultant Pharmacist of the Year in 2010 for my strong commitment to the advancement of patient care and improved health outcomes as well as for the development of an innovative training and resource package Not Just Pills® which improves aged care facility staff skills in administering non-packed medication formulations. Recently I have joined Ward Medication Management as the NSW Regional Manager. In this role, I hope to be able to share some of the knowledge I have gained in my time as an accredited pharmacist by mentoring other accredited pharmacists working in aged care with the ultimate goal of reducing medication-related harm in the elderly.”

Rachel Freeman
Professional Services Manager
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After attaining a Bachelor of Health Science (Nutrition and Dietetics) at the University of Newcastle in 2002, Rachel spent 3 years working in Inpatient/Outpatient Service roles within various locations in New South Wales and Victoria within the public health system. In 2007, Rachel obtained a Graduate Certificate (Diabetes Education), as well as establishing a private dietetics and diabetes education consultation practice in Perth of which she was the Director until 2011. From 2011-2013 Rachel continued clinical work as a Diabetes Dietitian and Diabetes Educator for NSW Health. During this time, Rachel was also involved in national policy reviews and national guideline development for various projects relating to people with diabetes. In 2015 Rachel completed a Master of Science (Diabetes) with a project to evaluate the ADEA mentoring program. As Professional Services Manager at ADEA, Rachel responds to all enquiries from members, health care professionals and the general public regarding professional matters. Her role includes liaising with stakeholders on various projects and programs to continually support ADEA members and to improve the health care of people with diabetes.

Linda Starr
Education Consultant
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Dr Linda Starr is a general and psychiatric qualified nurse, lawyer, associate professor in the School of Nursing and Midwifery and a Health Law and Ethics Education Consultant for Health Professionals. Her research interests have been in health law for health practitioners, criminal law, forensic health care, and elder abuse investigation. Her PhD project linked law and practice through exploring the experiences of those involved in the compulsory reporting of elder abuse in commonwealth-funded residential aged care facilities. Linda has had many years of clinical practice in acute care, mental health an aged care in both metropolitan and country health services before moving into education. She is currently the chair of the state board of the Nursing and Midwifery Board, Australia; Director at the Aged Rights Advocacy Service and the foundation president of the Australian Forensic Nurses Association. She has an extensive speaking and publication record, nationally and internationally, on issues in health law, forensic nursing, and elder abuse.

Chemène Sinson
Principal
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Chemène is a learning and performance specialist. She helps clients design, develops and implement learning experiences that improve performance in today’s world of work. To do this, Chemène draws on her 30+ years’ experience working in diverse educational sectors around the world, including school teaching, elite sports coaching, workplace learning and development, and higher education. She relies on her professional network to remain informed of the latest research and trends in learning and performance. Chemène helps organisations build learning experiences that work, and helps individuals build the skills and confidence people need to be impactful facilitators, presenters and assessors or simply to be effective in their role. She is the lead trainer of the Certificate IV in Training and Assessment (‘TAE’) for numerous registered training organisations (RTOs) and has produced a suite of TAE learning and assessment materials purchased by more than 100 RTOs to date. Chemène is a sought-after speaker and Master of Ceremonies at conferences and special events.

Kylie Elder
Senior Clinical Nurse Advisor- Skin Integrity/Wound Management
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Kylie has worked for a large community nursing organisation for over 20 years in various roles such as Primary Nurse, Wound CNC, Hospital Admission Risk Program Diabetes Foot CNC, Project Management and a little time in research. She is currently working in the role of Senior Clinical Nurse Advisor with a focus on skin integrity/wound and translating evidence into practice. She sits on the education pillar and the aseptic technique working party for Wounds Australia. She has presented at conferences and has been published.

Jenny Cole-Virtue
Certified Practising Speech Pathologist & Business Owner Forest Speech Pathology
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Jenny is a Certified Practising Member of Speech Pathology Australia and has extensive experience working with people who are living with swallowing, feeding and communication difficulties. She acts as a mentor with Speech Pathology Australia supporting less experienced Speech Pathologist in their clinical work. She has worked widely in the aged care, rehabilitation, acute care and outpatient settings both in Australia and the UK. Originally training as a Speech Pathologist in the UK, Jenny undertook further postgraduate study at Macquarie University, Sydney gaining a M.A. Communication Disorders. She has also worked in research, teaching and clinical supervision at Sydney, Macquarie and also Australian Catholic Universities. Jenny has a special interest in the area of aged care both in promoting safe mealtime environments and in addressing the facilitation of communication and engagement for people living with dementia.

Jenny currently works in her own mobile private practice, Forest Speech Pathology, based in the Northern suburbs of Sydney.  Forest Speech Pathology, as a mobile service is able to provide services across a range of areas in Sydney and is a registered provider with the NDIS.
Jenny is also an accredited Witness Intermediary working with the NSW Justice Department supporting children’s communication in the court context.

Debra Parker
Knowledge Manager
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Debra Parker holds a Masters in Professional Education & Training and brings 18 years’ education leadership experience across community, disability and workplace learning environments to her current role as Knowledge Manager for the Epilepsy Foundation. Debra has a strong passion for inclusive and flexible learning environments which recognises the individual in the learning journey. The Epilepsy Foundation provides support for people living with epilepsy and their families to help them live better lives as defined by them. As Knowledge Manager, Debra works strategically to support effective transfer of knowledge; knowledge which enables the Epilepsy Foundation to deliver on its mission to raise awareness of epilepsy in the broader community, to reduce stigma, and to create a more welcoming and inclusive society.

Ann Holand
Company owner & trainer
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“I have been a member of one of the voluntary aid societies for nearly 40 years and as a trainer assessor in first and enhanced skills for 30 years. I have taught first aid at work since 1986 and started to specialise in health and social care from 1987. I worked mainly as a domiciliary carer at weekends and when I was not training, I became a manager of a domiciliary care organisation in 2009 and moved to nursing care in 2011. I returned full time to training in January 2015 and am an endorsed provider with Skills for Care in my own right. I train mainly now for my local county council adult social care department but keep my company running as a sideline.”

Seamus Doherty
Independent Safeguarding Trainer & Consultant
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Seamus Doherty, Safeguarding Training & Consultancy Services (STCS) Seamus is an independent Safeguarding Adults Trainer and Consultant who works across a number of Local Authorities in London and the South East and has worked within the health and social care field for almost 25 years. A qualified trainer and coach, Seamus has specialised in Safeguarding since 2004, he has a proven track record in the delivery and promotion of safe, high-quality services that support positive outcomes for service users, carers, families and the organisations that support them. Having seen thousands of cases referred to under Safeguarding Adults Policies and Procedures he has come to realise that no two cases are ever the same. People come from (and with) relationships, environments and circumstances that are as unique as their fingerprints and each has their individual experiences, emotions, needs and desired outcomes and we must listen to each and every one and act appropriately.

“I aim to encourage a commitment to the belief that no adult should have to experience any form of abuse; but where they do, that it is all our responsibility to ensure that they are supported in a manner that is right for them.”

Kate Mcleod
Senior Clinical Nurse Advisor - Continence
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“I have worked in community nursing for over 20 years and recently this has expanded out to Residential Aged Care. I have a graduate certificate in Continence & Urology nursing and I am currently working towards a Master of Nursing: Continence & Urology. I am passionate about helping people who are living with continence issues to live well, be as independent as possible and be problem-free.”

Hilary Woodhead
Director
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Hilary Woodhead has worked in the field of Dementia Care/Older people since 1990. Hilary has worked in a range of care settings, she has direct experience of providing and managing care services and is passionate about developing services that provide outstanding care and support for people with dementia and their families. Since 2000 Hilary has worked in service improvement and staff development, she set up Support in Dementia; (SiD) a dementia specialist training and improvement consultancy with Emma Hewat in 2014. Support In Dementia works with national and local providers of Health, Housing and Social Care; to develop effective care and support, focussing on Dementia Care, Safeguarding and the legal framework that underpins good practice; (The Equality Act, The Care Act, The Human Rights Act and The Mental Capacity Act and Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards). SiD holds several contracts with local authorities, large care providers and hospital trusts as well as smaller single proprietary care providers. They pride themselves on the diversity of their portfolio and work with associates and providers to continually develop their understanding of the sector and their service improvement and staff development offer. Hilary lives in Brighton with her husband and three kids, she enjoys living by the sea and going to the theatre (she loves show tunes!)

Preston Walker
Director
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Preston Walker is an award-winning chef with 25 years of experience. Working at his family business Oak House Residential Home, Preston strives to improve the standards of cooking across the sector. Preston is a Director of Oak House Kitchen and with expertise in special diets and nutrition for the elderly, provides catering consultancy and training to the healthcare sector. Preston came from a fine-dining background working in restaurants throughout the UK. Starting his career at Hambleton Hall, he followed this with stints at the Kildare Hotel & Country Club and Harts Restaurant. As Head Chef at World Service Restaurant, he and the team won Nottingham Restaurant of the Year 4 times.

Amira Guirguis
Pharmacist/ Researcher/ Lecturer
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Amira originally trained as an accountant before gaining an interest in pharmacy, which resulted in the completion of an MPharm degree from the University of Hertfordshire (UK) and multiple awards including the JOEL medal and the General Pharmaceutical Council, mental health and pharmaceutical chemistry research awards. Amira gained her PhD in the in-field detection of New Psychoactive Substance (NPS), which cumulated in the publication of several papers and the JPAG’s Geoffrey Phillips award. Amira joined the University of Hertfordshire as a lecturer in the Department of Pharmacy, Pharmacology and Postgraduate Medicine, where she teaches on the MPharm, Pharmaceutical Science and Bioscience programmes. Amira is also the Training and Development Lead for Propharmace Ltd, where she develops, and reviews teaching material for pre-registration pharmacists and also teaches on the programme. Amira is a reviewer for multiple journals focussing on public health, clinical pharmacy and substance of misuse research. Amira has contributed to the first guidance for pharmacists on psychoactive substances, and the NPS monographs in Clarke’s Analysis of Drugs and Poisons to assist with the identification of NPS by front-line workers. Amira is a committee member of the RPS LNWLPF and JPAG, a member of the RPS MEP advisory board and other pharmaceutical advisory boards.

Phillipa Shirtcliffe
Nurse
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Philippa Shirtcliffe is passionate about promoting positive outcomes for people and supporting teams to provide outstanding care. Trained as a nurse, after 10 years in the NHS, Philippa has spent over 20 years working for large domiciliary and residential care providers in the UK. Starting out a care co-ordinator, she managed multi-site branches, led a business development team and had national responsibility for whistleblowing and safeguarding. These roles fuelled her enthusiasm for the establishment of good governance frameworks within care services. Philippa has been developing and writing policies and procedures for over 15 years and is Head of Care Quality at QCS. She retains her nurse registration.

Dr Esther Beck
Lecturer in Nursing
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Dr Esther Beck is currently a lecturer in Nursing at Ulster University. Esther completed her PhD in 2017 which focused on Palliative Care and Dementia. Clinically Esther worked in both the acute settings and long term care settings. She has completed her specialist Nursing Practice in both Palliative Care and Dementia. The main focus in her research is to improve the palliative care provision provided within the long term care setting in which she has published widely.  Esther is currently the secretary for the International Network for Doctoral Education in Nursing and is a Fellow of the European Academy of Nursing Sciences. She is also an active committee member of the Palliative Care Research Forum as well as the Irish Gerontology Nurses Association.

Drew Kamphius
Director and First Aid Trainer
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Drew Kamphius has worked in the emergency services for over 23 years. Her interest in first aid and lifesaving started when she was just 8 and entered a lifesaving competition at her local swimming pool. She realised from an early age that she was able to stay calm in stressful situations and excelled in the competition. She qualified and worked as a Lifeguard around her studies before becoming a Police Officer (TVP). At 23 years of age, she qualified as a Riot Squad Medic. After 5 years in the Police, she chose to join the Oxfordshire Fire & Rescue Service as an Operational Fire Fighter. In 2009 she became the first and, to date, only female firefighter in OFRS to qualify and work on the Specialist Rescue Unit. She then moved to the ambulance service in Oxfordshire and set up her own first aid training company, First for Safety.

Alison Smith
Consultant Prescribing Support Dietician / Chair of the Older People Specialist Group
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Alison Smith – With over 20 years’ experience as a qualified Dietitian, Alison has extensive knowledge of dysphagia and nutrition and for the last 6 years Alison has worked as a Prescribing Support Dietitian within a Clinical Commissioning Group. Her role focusses on appropriate prescribing of all products relating to nutrition, with a particular remit for appropriate prescribing of oral nutritional supplements and appropriate identification and treatment of malnutrition.

Alison’s particular interests include malnutrition, care homes, dysphagia and dementia, and prior to her current job held a clinical role specialising in nutrition support for older people in care homes and the wider community, as well as nutrition support including tube feeding for people with progressive neurological conditions.

Alison is the chair of the Older People Specialist Group of the British Dietetic Association (BDA) and has represented dieticians working with older people on the IDDSI UK External Reference Group since its inception.

Mick Feather
Care Business Manager
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Mick is a self-motivated and enthusiastic Learning and Organisational Development professional with over 30 years’ experience working in the public sector and 15 years’ experience as a trainer.

Mick joined Citation in 2017 after 4 years as a Care Quality Commission Inspector, two years of which he spent training 600 new CQC Inspectors.

Mick has sound knowledge of the care sector, learning and development, equality and diversity, cultural change and the ability to translate complex legal guidance and procedures into practical easy to follow solutions. “I have a passion for people and organisational development to raise performance and improve care services throughout the UK.”

He worked at East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service for 7 years as the Equality and Diversity Manager, trained all 900 staff on a two-day equality course and supported senior managers with the cultural change agenda.

He also worked at the Child Support Agency as a trainer and Executive Officer and prior to that worked as a National Insurance Inspector at the Department of Work and Pensions.

Mick is a Chartered Member of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (MCIPD), a qualified coach (CMI Level 5) and won the Communities and Local Government Individual Award for “Leadership” for his work with the disabled community in 2008.

Sally-Ann Remnant
Freelance Consultant nurse in epilepsy
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Sally-Ann Remnant has worked within the field of epilepsy for over 20 years. First trained as a nurse for disabilities she quickly moved on to support those with complex epilepsy. Initially as a community disability nurse in south London, a matron for an epilepsy charity, then epilepsy specialist nurse for Surrey. More recently Sally-Ann has worked as a nurse practitioner in epilepsy for Guys and St Thomas’ London where she also gained her medical MSc in epileptology from King’s College. Here she gained recognition for her research into “ a link between constipation and seizures frequency” and was given the Bateman award. Sally-Ann is a nurse prescriber and nurse consultant for her own company called Epilepsy Explained. She and her amazing colleagues provide bespoke training and consultancy across the UK.

Megan Thorpe
Psychotherapist
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Megan Thorpe has worked in palliative care for 20 years. She was previously Manager of the Sacred Heart Bereavement Counselling Service at St Vincent’s Hospital in Sydney and now works in both private practice and at the Bereavement Counselling Service at Calvary Health Care Kogarah, in Sydney.

She has worked as a Spiritual Care Counsellor for people facing the end of their life and has worked at the children’s hospice, Bear Cottage, run by the Children’s Hospital, Westmead.

Megan is experienced at individual face to face therapy, running support groups, acting as an advisor and consultant in bereavement and end of life support. She has presented at a number of national conferences on the topics of grief, bereavement and spiritual care. She also teaches mindfulness and meditation.

Jill Timms
Nurse and Consultancy Manager
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Jill Timmsis a Care Consultant in Oxfordshire and surrounding counties for anyone needing help with preparation for CQC / LA Inspections.

She is a qualified Nurse, who became a successful Manager of an Oxfordshire Nursing Home for many years, progressing to Quality Assurance Manager for that Care Home Group.

Jill then decided she needed a new challenge, so set up her Consultancy: “Helping Manager’s Manage’, full time for 3 years.

Jill developed her Consultancy, mainly around the subjects of CQC Hot Topics of Inspection, Preparation for Inspections and Quality Monitoring, with the development of a Quality Monitoring Toolkit.

She keeps abreast of developments and routinely visits Care Homes to carry out a ‘Critical Friend’ ‘CQC Hot Topics Mini Inspection’ and informing Managers of new developments in the sector.

For the last 11 years, Jill has been both working part-time as QA Manager for the same Care Home group, whilst also, part-time, successfully and effectively running the Consultancy, enabling clients to improve ratings across the board.