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Goodbye 2007! Hello 2008!

Nursing in Practice Events are the only free regional events in the UK dedicated exclusively to primary care nurses. We take a look at this year's highlights and what 2008 has in store …

Thousands of nurses across the UK have attended this year's Nursing in Practice Events. Now in their fifth year, the events offer a choice of top professional healthcare speakers, a vast range of exhibitors and the chance to get to grips with the latest developments in primary care nursing.
"The events not only serve to educate but give nurses an arena to meet with others working in their local area and discuss in an open and relaxed forum the issues and developments affecting their daily work lives," says Nursing in Practice editor-in-chief, Elaine Linnane.
This year has been no exception, with shows in Glasgow, Cardiff, Manchester and London. A highlight for many at London was independent healthcare analyst, writer and broadcaster Roy Lilley, who had delegates singing, patting each other on the back and scribbling down their theories of effective service. To top it all, he broke our inhouse record for the "most nominations as a personal highlight of the event".
Dr Sarah Jarvis and Jane DeVille-Almond were also crowd favourites in 2007, and topics such as HPV vaccination and the smoking legislation were well received. The final event of 2007, Nursing in Practice Birmingham, offered a keynote speech from former RCN President Sylvia Denton. Sylvia spoke about the pressing need for extra nurses to be recruited into the profession, and how vital it is that nurses have a platform to get their voices heard.
Looking ahead to next year, Nursing in Practice Events plans to come to two new locations: Belfast (6 February) and Newcastle (23 April). According to Elizabeth Yareham, Head of Nursing in Practice Events, the extra settings will allow more UK primary care nurses to benefit from our free educational programme - "The aim is to ensure the programmes deliver what nurses really need in locations convenient to them."

CPHVA gets involved
Nursing in Practice Events is currently supported by the Royal College of General Practitioners, and accreditation by the Royal College of Nursing has been sought for future events. But come February - when Nursing in Practice Events arrives in Belfast - we will be joined by our new partners: the Community Practitioners' and Health Visitors' Association (CPHVA) and Unite, the Union.
Elizabeth Yareham is excited about the Unite/CPHVA involvement. "I feel we can really get behind an important group of primary care nurses," she says. "It allows us to streamline the programme to ensure that both practice-based and community nurses have a full range of education topics to choose from, in the form of an additional stream at all our events."
Dr Cheryll Adams, Acting Lead Professional Officer for Unite/CPHVA, is also pleased with this new development, stating: "We are delighted to be working in partnership with Nursing in Practice magazine to make these events available to Unite/CPHVA members."

A prize, for me?!
In the hope of creating a tighter knit community of primary care nurses, Nursing in Practice is also to launch its very own awards programme. The "Nursing in Practice Annual Awards" are designed to reward best practice, excellence and innovation in primary care across a range of clinical areas. With 10 awards in total, teams have the chance to gain recognition in everything from obesity management to travel health. A "Team of the Year" award aims to credit colleagues working together to make a real difference in their community.
Applications will be judged on their clarity of leadership, innovation, robust data collection and the sustainability of the changes that have been developed. Selecting the top projects will be a panel of renowned expert judges including Chief Nursing Officer Christine Beasley, Cathy Moulton from Diabetes UK and Ian Hulatt from the Royal College of Nursing.
Award winners will receive an educational grant worth £1,000, a certificate and a trophy at the Nursing in Practice Awards dinner. If this sounds like something you'd be interested in, then keep an eye on and all will soon be revealed.
Nursing in Practice Events have rapidly gained a reputation that brings delegates back year after year. As Marilyn Eveleigh, consultant editor of Nursing in Practice, says, the events offer "great speakers with national profiles, the chance to question and debate with key opinion leaders, the chance to network with numerous nursing colleagues, and most importantly, a stimulating day that will make you forget the pressures back at work - a real treat!" See you in 2008!