Helen Kerr

Dr

  • Room 06.314 - Medical Biology Centre

    United Kingdom

Accepting PhD Students

PhD projects

Dr Kerr is open to PhD applications in the fields of: - Interventions and evaluations to improve the transition from children’s to adult services -Oncology and palliative care nursing - Educational interventions for teaching oncology and palliative care nursing

20072020

Research output per year

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Personal profile

Research Interests

Helen Kerr is a registered nurse with previous clinical experience in oncology and palliative care.  Helen is also a registered Specialist Nurse in oncology with the Nursing and Midwifery Council. 

Research interests lie in the broad area of oncology and palliative care.  Previous research completed focused on the impact on registered nurses of working in ward based oncology care.  Research completed in 2016 as part of a Doctoral Fellowship identified the factors that were considered to contribute to an effective transition from children’s to adult services for young adults with life-limiting conditions on the island of Ireland. In 2017 Helen was awarded the International Journal of Palliative Nursing Researcher of the Year award and was also runner up in the Royal College of Nursing, Northern Ireland Nurse Researcher of the Year for this research.  Helen secured the national Florence Nightingale Travel Scholarship award in 2016 to continue expanding this research interest.  

Recently completed research focused on the use of a Personal-held record for young people with complex health conditions. Another recently completed study explored the use of mobile spaced learning as a digital learning platform for teaching symptom management to undergraduate nursing students.

Current research Dr Kerr is leading on is a qualitiative research study focused on the impact of the Specialist Practice in Oncology qualification on patient care and clinical practice.

Helen is a member of the All Ireland Institute of Hospice and Palliative Care (AIIHPC) Palliative Care Research Network (PCRN) and the Palliative Care Research Forum Northern Ireland (PCRFNI) executive committee.  She is also an editorial board member for the Cancer Nursing Practice Journal.

Teaching

Helen is a Senior Fellow with the Higher Education Academy (SFHEA).  Helen is the Pathway Lead for the BSc(Hons) and Postgraduate Diploma in Specialist Practice in Oncology programme and is module coordinator for the following four modules in this programme. 

  • 'The Basis of Therapeutic Practice'
  • 'Biomedical Aspects of Cancer Nursing' 
  • 'Dimensions of Care'  
  • 'Assessment and Advanced Communication'

Helen is also module coordinator for the 'Caring Communication in Nursing' module in the BSc(Hons) Nursing programme.  Helen also teaches in 'Uni Simulation' and 'Interprofessional education' (IPE) simulation in year three of the BSc(Hons) Nursing.

Achievements

  • Member of the editorial board for Cancer Nursing Practice Journal.
  • Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (SFHEA) in January 2020.
  • Small grant secured from the Public Health Agency to co-lead with two service users in the organisation of a "Year of the Nurse and Midwifery oncology mini-conference' in the Great Hall, QUB in February 2020.
  • Secured a small grant from 'The Burdett Trust for Nursing' for research on the impact of the Specialist Practice qualification on patient care and clinical practice in 2019.
  • Winner of the International Journal of Palliative Nursing 'Researcher of the Year' award in March 2017.
  • Awarded Researcher Plus award at the PhD graduation ceremony at Queen's University Belfast in December 2016.
  • Awarded competitive national 'Florence Nightingale Foundation Travel Scholarship' in October 2016.
  • Royal College of Nursing Northern Ireland Nurse Researcher of the Year, runner up in May 2016.
  • Awarded competitive Marcia Mackie award at the School of Nursing and Midwifery, QUB, in 2014/15. 
  • Successful bursary application from the 'Palliative Care Congress' to present at the Congress in Harrogate, England in 2014.
  • Along with Dr Peter O'Halloran, Dr Honor Nicholl and Professor Jayne Price, awarded a competitve Doctoral Fellowship from the All Ireland Institute of Hospice and Palliative Care and the Health and Social Care, Public Health Agency, Research Division from 2013-2016.

 

Research Statement

Research interests lie in the broad area of oncology and palliative care which includes the development of innovative educational strategies in this subject area.

Current research

  • Principal Investigator: ‘Registered nurses’ perspectives of the impact of completing the Specialist Practice in Oncology qualification on patient care and clinical practice: a qualitative study.

  • Co-Investigator: 'A Mixed Methods Evaluation of a Year One Evidence-Based Nursing Module.'

 

Completed research

  • ‘Feasibility study to explore the use of mobile spaced learning as a digital learning platform when teaching symptom management to undergraduate nursing student.  SPLENdidS study.’
  • ‘Factors associated with an effective transition from children’s to adult services by young adults with life-limiting conditions in Ireland.’

  • ‘The usefulness and acceptability of a personal-health record to children and young people living with a complex health condition.’

  •  ‘An exploration of the impact on registered nurses of working in ward-based oncology care.’ 

  • ‘An evaluation of the development of audio-visual aids when teaching communication skills to undergraduate nursing students.’

  • ‘Students journey through a BSc(Hons) Psychological Trauma Studies programme in the context of a post conflict society in Northern Ireland.’

 

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