Friday, 7 February 2014

Annual Report Introduction - Steve Ersser

Professor Steven Ersser, Dean

Welcome to the first Annual Report of the Faculty of Health & Social Care. I cannot believe that over two years have passed since my arrival at Hull. Reading this report I am proud to be Dean of a Faculty whose staff and students have excelled in research and education and have embraced transformational change to prepare us for the challenges of the future. Our staff and students have excelled in many areas and these are illustrated through a wide range of awards and appointments.
We have welcomed new members of academic staff from varied clinical, academic and professional support backgrounds, including our expanded professoriate including Professors Galvin, Hayter and Watson, all of whom contribute to the leadership of the Faculty.  Our latest addition to the senior team is Dr Carolyn Macintosh-Franklin from Liverpool, who has taken up the post of Associate Dean, Learning, Teaching & Quality.  We also welcome new Visiting Faculty, including Honorary Professor Esme Moniz-Cooke, who is an international scholar in the field of dementia research.
The Faculty has undergone a major restructure with four new Departments including two new Heads (Professors Hayter and Jomeen), these are: - the Department of Nursing; Midwifery & Child Health; Psychological Health & Wellbeing and Health Technology and Perioperative Practice. Psychological Health brings together for the first time our clinical psychologists with academic staff in the mental health and learning disability nursing fields to promote interdisciplinary opportunities. We are also delighted to welcome the integration of our colleagues on the Scarborough campus who are within the Centre for Health Care Studies, led by Jane Baxter. 
A key part of our development strategy is to look outward and engage with and learn from not only our vibrant region but also colleagues internationally. We have been developing our regional activity by working closely with our NHS partners and Health Education England to drive up standards though innovation; this has been led by Sue Beacock, our Associate Dean (External Engagement). One exciting area of curriculum development is in the area of advanced practice where health professionals such as nurses prepare to lead and develop new services, often challenging traditional health care role boundaries to promote better access to health care. 
On the national stage Dr Peter Draper has been recognised with National Teaching Fellowship by the Higher Educational Academy and Professor Watson has been invited to lead the new Lancet Commission on Nursing. Another highlight has been our strong Operating Department Practice team who have had a highly successful and commended validation of a new BSc ODP degree, one of the first in the country to prepare ODPs at degree to support the future development of perioperative care.
Further afield we have significantly expanded our international activity welcoming many students and staff that have visited and enriched our academic community. Our visits are promoting collaboration and the sharing of ideas with countries in most of the continents of the world. We recognise that health care development, research and education are global activities and the need to develop our work through examining other cultures. 
Through our new Research Development Groups we are building research teams in areas addressing key health problems, the challenge of supporting the wellbeing of those living with long-term conditions, addressing major societal challenges in the field of sexual and maternal health and investigating new approaches to embracing new health technologies and their application to the care. Our research programme is increasingly interdisciplinary. This wok has been led by our Associate Dean, Professor Julie Jomeen and our group leads.   
An illustration of our developing scholarly activity is the substantial growth in the number and quality of publications by staff; some of these are illustrated in this report. The Faculty is also proud to host the Journal of Advanced Nursing through the work of its editors Professor Watson and Hayter, which is just one of many journals the faculty is engaged with.
This is an exciting period in not only the history of the Faculty but also the University of Hull, its city and the wider region. It has just been announced that the University will be making a major investment in the ‘Health Hub’, which will involve the development of the health and medical facilities on the western campus at Hull, including of our own academic facilities, especially in our clinical skills facilities and the integration of our clinical psychology staff. We will also have an active presence within the new cross Faculty interdisciplinary research areas within the new Hull-York Medical School building.  This is an addition to the major transformation of the Brynmor-Jones library which completes its redevelopment this summer. Furthermore, as members of the city of Hull, we are delighted to be recognised as the UK City of Culture in 2017, where we will play our part in highlighting and investigating the connection between the arts and health care.
Our Faculty is trying to reach out to a wider community of health academics and health providers through our rapidly developing blog which, in its first year has had over 10,000 visits. This report complements our web and social media providing another valuable opportunity to connect with and share some of news with our partners, colleagues and supporters to offer only some illustrations of work and development. We hope it will provide additional opportunities to connect with our Faculty and offer new insights into how we are developing and playing our part in health care research and education.
Finally, I would like to take this opportunity to thank all those who have supported the Faculty in its work over the last few years and hope that we can continue to work together in supporting the development of health care near and far through our growing academic health care community. 

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