NHS 75 Staff Stories: Janet Harvey-Kenworthy

Janet Harvey-Kenworthy

Janet Harvey-Kenworthy - Head of Nursing for Adult Community Mental Health Teams & Talking Therapies (IAPT), including Primary Care Services

How long have you been in the NHS?

I started working in the NHS in 1987 when I was employed as a Student Nurse at Coventry School of Nursing. I’ve worked for the NHS and CWPT (in its current and previous form) for 35 years, except for one year working in another Trust. I qualified as nurse in 1990, became a senior staff nurse in 1991, then a deputy ward manager in 1993, and a ward manager in 1995, a role I did in various forms whilst I had my children. In 2009, I became a matron, and more recently, I have taken up the position as lead nurse. I love that I’ve been able to progress through a variety of roles and have had the ability to work across various teams as a visible leader.

One of the main things for me is that I’m proud to serve the population of Coventry and Warwickshire, and working at the Trust in particular, I value the opportunities and support it has given me with managing work-life balance.

Why did you choose to work in the NHS?

For me, nursing is a vocation, not just a career. I chose the NHS and being a nurse because it’s a gift and a privilege to support patients, carers, and their families through their journeys.

I chose CWPT because its vision and values align with my own. The value of integrity is really important to me, both personally and professionally, and being held to account and thinking about how we can raise the bar in our everyday tasks to better patient experience is something at the heart of what I and the Trust want to achieve. I feel honoured that I can contribute to the outcomes of our patients and be a part of the care given to some of our most vulnerable groups.

Describe your role in 100 words.

My role is about providing clear, visible leadership, and providing my expertise, professional guidance, and support. To give support to our staff. I look at how the nursing voice can be heard and how we can raise the standard and provide assurance and accountability for the care we give. I am responsible for making sure our nurses have the right skills and feel supported in their nursing journeys, as well as ensuring safeguarding, quality and standards of care and best practices are upheld. I provide assurance and confidence to our carers/families/patients and external stakeholders that we are accountable to. I want to celebrate differences and create an inclusive, not exclusive, culture.

What do you enjoy most about your role?

There are many things I love about my role, but to name a few, I love seeing staff develop and shine and seeing what we’ve done well as a team and a Trust. Although it’s difficult, I also like to look at how we could have done better and what lesson we’ve learned from previous practice. My philosophy is that it’s a bottle half full, not half empty, and it’s good to look at positive change and action, rather than passive or reactive decisions. I enjoy how each day I’m working to improve, learn, and make a difference, and giving that empowerment to staff about how they can do their job well and take pride in the job we do.

Being respected and valued within my role is important to me and I’m proud to provide a nursing voice.

Describe your favourite memory of working at CWPT in 100 words.

One of my favourite memories was supporting some of my day care services and having some of my teams receive quality awards.

Another memorable time for me was when I was supporting staff/patients/carers after an outbreak and providing visible leadership and support in making sure everything was safe in that outbreak environment upon its conclusion.

Being a named nurse and seeing one of my patients improve pre-Covid 19 who recognised me in the community setting who approached me in person, telling me how well there are doing and then having them thank me and valuing the support and therapeutic engagement I had done had made a difference made me proud. They’re now in their late 40s and managing in the community and it’s wonderful to see.

Read more staff stories for NHS 75 and find our more about the Celebrations.