Nikki’s ‘thank you’ from the Duke | Our news

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Nikki’s ‘thank you’ from the Duke

Respiratory clinical fellow Dr Nicola (Nikki) Smallcombe has received a special ‘thank you’ from the Duke of Cambridge.

Nikki, who as well as being a frontline medic is also an education academy fellow, spoke to His Royal Highness in a phone call this week.

They discussed Nikki’s contributions during the pandemic, which included working extra shifts on the specialist respiratory wards at The Royal London hospital at the height of the outbreak.

Nikki has also been instrumental in establishing a training programme for redeployed staff who had no prior experience of caring for Covid-19 patients.

Following the call, Nikki, who splits her time between St Bartholomew’s and The Royal London, said: “It was a privilege to speak to the Duke of Cambridge about the challenges of working in the Covid-19 pandemic.

“The second wave was the most difficult period of my career to date, with many patients dying and deteriorating, and following on from a very difficult time caring for such sick patients in the first wave.”

“I was honoured that he took the time to speak with me.”

Paying tribute to Nikki, Helen Mills, a nurse and simulation lead at St Bartholomew’s Hospital, said: “During the second wave, Nikki designed a number of practical courses to help colleagues who were faced with caring for patients in areas they were unfamiliar with.  

“In the respiratory department, she took on extra shifts to support her colleagues, often working long stretches to fulfil commitments to both elements of her job.

“Nikki embodies all that is great about working in the NHS. Her commitment to her job, her colleagues and the patients is exemplary.”

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