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Nursing lecturers share expertise and develop learning resources for NHS


A new online training course that teaches healthcare workers about how hand hygiene fights COVID-19 has been developed by academics at De Montfort University Leicester (DMU). 

Lecturers from the Leicester School of Nursing at DMU, Gemma Halewood-Muse and Pete Aires, were approached by Knowlex, a company that provides healthcare organisations with the latest educational resources, to develop online learning materials to assist the health and social care sector in its fight against coronavirus. 

Photo by Fran Jacquier on Unsplash
Photo by Fran Jacquier on Unsplash

With the support of University of Hospitals Leicester NHS Trust (UHL), Gemma and Pete have created an e-learning platform that will be made available to all health professionals in the NHS. On completion of the course, they will receive CPD (Continuing Professional Development) points and a certificate. 

“We are immensely proud to have been asked to get involved,” said Gemma. “It’s really important to be able to help and support healthcare workers by sharing our expertise.  

“By sharing our knowledge, we may help reduce death rates and infection rates, which is really important, especially in Leicester at this time. This pandemic has showed us how important it is to all pull together.” 

Gemma and Pete developed the training package in just four weeks, after Knowlex reached out to DMU at the end of May. 

“DMU is the only UK university that runs Infection Prevention and Control modules for the NHS and independent health sector,” continued Gemma. “We used our modules as a basis and then reached out to UHL and partners in social care settings to ask what they would find beneficial and the challenges they had faced during the COVID-19 crisis.” 

Louise Perkins, Clinical Skills Supervisor at UHL, supported the development of the programme. She said: “The training programme is crucial in the current situation to ensure students are aware of the current guidelines to best protect staff and patients from the spread of COVID-19.”

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The new course is available to anyone in the NHS but is particularly aimed towards workers in care settings – including community nurses and care home staff.   

“Although hand hygiene is considered a basic necessity in the prevention of infection, the value of doing this simple action correctly has been reinforced as the key to reduce cross infection with the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Dr Chris Whitney-Cooper, Head of School of Nursing and Midwifery at DMU. 

“It is exciting to see the development of this e-learning programme that has the potential to reach professionals across the UK and worldwide to engage, learn and improve handwashing and importantly, raise standards in healthcare.” 

Adam Dakri, Head of Healthcare for Knowlex said, “For the last five years we’ve been organising Infection Prevention conferences that have brought together thousands of healthcare leaders.  

“During this time we’ve really got an understanding of what the UK’s healthcare teams want and need, and that’s having a platform to listen to industry leaders and policymakers discuss the latest government policies and guidelines, and having the right tools to go and implement the information within their healthcare practice.” 

Knowlex organises the annual Infection Prevention and Control Conference in collaboration with NHS England, bringing together more than 500 senior healthcare professionals to discuss the constant battle to prevent and control healthcare associated infection. 

“We are really pleased to be launching our new online training platform, as it’s the missing link between our educational conferences and having the ability to share the information from the day with the teams in all healthcare settings,” added Adam. 

“We all know that CPD hours are important for healthcare staff and we want to provide as much educational information to our delegates, and their teams as possible.” 

For more information about the online resources that Knowlex provides, visit

Posted on Tuesday 14th July 2020

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