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LCHS staff graduate from University of Lincoln

Posted on: 10th October 2022

Two clinical staff from Lincolnshire Community Health Services NHS Trust (LCHS) achieved master's degrees in a recent graduation ceremony from the University of Lincoln.

Helen Scowen who works in the Urgent Care Home Visiting Team, received a degree of Master of Science in Advanced Clinical Practice (Urgent Care). The MSc training involved treating minor illnesses and injuries and prescribing medications. 

Helen’s job involves travelling around the county supporting patients with urgent care needs to enable them to remain at home and not have to attend a hospital. Patients Helen sees could have infections, catheter problems or end of life needs.

Helen who has a nursing background and is from Boston said: “I am very proud to have achieved this master’s degree. I’ve studied flexibly for the last five years, whilst working for LCHS and caring for my severely disabled daughter. My daughter is my inspiration to do my job.

“The course was also very challenging as I suffered a cardiac event and lost both my parents within months of each other during the pandemic.”

Helen’s manager Julie O’Rourke said: “Helen has much to celebrate. She has studied and worked hard for her Advanced Clinical Practice qualification, gaining experience throughout the course.”


Debbie Higgins also graduated last month and is now a qualified Advanced Clinical Practitioner too.

Debbie is from Gainsborough and works on Scotter Ward at John Coupland Hospital in Gainsborough.

Debbie said: “It has been a roller-coaster of a course, with so many ups and downs especially as the teaching was predominantly virtual during the pandemic. Then I contracted COVID-19 and was quite poorly for a month or so, which affected my studies too.

“I am over the moon to have completed it and now graduated.

“Thanks to my colleagues and LCHS for the support and on the job experience whilst I studied.”

Debbie is a paramedic and now works as an Advanced Clinical Practitioner on the ward and this involves looking after patients who may need recuperation, intensive rehabilitation and patients with end-of-life needs.

Donna Phillips, the Clinical Team Leader at Gainsborough said: “It has been a hard journey for Debbie, we are very proud of her and pleased she has achieved her goal of successfully completing the course.”

LCHS has supported these staff whilst they completed their degrees, with time off for studying or attending the course and with Health Education England funding.

LCHS is committed to developing staff and progressing staff’s careers. If you are interested in working for us, please see the LCHS website.