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The University of Southampton
Health Sciences

Body image event for students brings nursing fields together

Published: 1 April 2014

Over 180 undergraduate nursing students from the University of Southampton’s Faculty of Health Sciences attended a unique event devoted to exploring body image.

The event brought together students in the fields of adult, child and mental health nursing, and academics and clinicians from all fields of nursing, to educate, inform and broaden understanding of the complex nature of the care provided for issues related to body image within contemporary healthcare today.

Students were asked to consider a range of perspectives on the issue in relation to their field of practice, whilst appraising the role of the nurse caring for people with complex healthcare needs in a variety of healthcare settings and their own homes.

A keynote lecture was given on the topic of limb loss in relation to body image and the implications for the future by leading researcher Dr Maggie Donovan-Hall.  In her lecture Dr Donovan-Hall discussed providing a foundation to holistically bring together the wishes and needs of the service user and how this can make a difference to future practice.

Speech and Language Therapist Sally Pople also gave a lecture on Dysphagia - the medical term for the symptom of difficulty with swallowing.  Other subjects explored in the lecture series included body dysmorphia, eating disorders and plus size care.                     

Four interactive workshops were also held at the event with the opportunity for students to learn together whilst considering the complexities of current healthcare.

Commenting on the event, speaker Sally Pople, said: ""I really enjoyed the day and the students were great, engaged and asked interesting questions. They were a real credit to the team and the University."

This event was part of the final taught module of the programme for all the students attending.

Complex Care module co-lead Gill Prudhoe, said: "We are delighted that this event was so successful. Student feedback has been incredibly positive and we will definitely consider running the event in the future.

"It's been a positive learning experience for our students and a great platform for bringing all nursing fields together to discuss such a complex an issue affecting many care settings."

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