Sheree-Leigh Woodall: Matron and Team Leader, HMP Oakwood
Sheree-Leigh, a qualified, dynamic and highly experienced nurse, had spent much of her career working in hospitals in the West Midlands. She loved her work but, while she knew she was supporting her patients with excellent care, she felt she had more to give.
She explained: “I had always enjoyed my work and I’d had the opportunity to work in a number of specialisms, including elective surgery and emergency care. But over the years I began to feel as if I were professionally stagnating – and that does not suit my personality.
“In my last hospital role I worked in an A&E. While working there I met prison officers and the prisoners they had brought in to be treated for conditions or injuries that could not be fully supported within the prison walls.
“The more I heard about the challenges of providing excellent care within such a regulated environment, the more I saw that this could be the challenge I had been looking for.”
Sheree-Leigh joined the team at HMP Oakwood as a team leader and took full advantage of the wide variety of training courses offered by Practice Plus Group’s Health in Justice team.
She said: “I was already an experienced nurse, but I was delighted with the level and variety of training I was offered. With Health in Justice your talents are nurtured and there are opportunities to develop your career as well as your skills.”
Sheree-Leigh’s commitment and dedication saw her rise through the nursing bands. Now she directly line manages a team of five and oversees a team of 33 in her role as matron, providing primary care services to more than 2,000 people in the country’s busiest prison. She is also contributing through her role as part of the company’s diversity group, dedicated to ensuring that opportunities are open to all.
She said: “I love the autonomy my role gives me. I’m encouraged to think outside the box, to find solutions and make decisions. At the same time I feel supported and part of a team. No two days are the same and my nursing and management skills continue to grow.
“For any nurse looking to have greater responsibilities and challenges, as well as a tremendous sense of fulfilment, I would recommend they talk to Practice Plus Group about how a career in Health in Justice could make a difference to them.”
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