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Monica performed her secondment at Guy’s & St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust (GSTT) in London. Here following her experience:

I am Monica Stephen Shuaibu, a general Public Health Nurse and a Genetic Counsellor working with the adult haematology/sickle cell clinic department at Barau Dikko Teaching Hospital Kaduna Nigeria with a special interest in the nursing care and management of patients with Sickle cell Disease.

Joining the ARISE project as a researcher was one of my greatest career opportunities which has equipped me with the necessary knowledge and skills in providing a better management of sickle cell disease (SCD). I was seconded to Guy’s & St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust (GSTT) on Workpackage 4 from November 2019 to February 2020. My key focus was learning about Newborn SCD Screening for neurocognitive complication, clinical care and antibiotics prophylaxis.

I have completed various online trainings such as the Sickle cell and Thalassaemia modules and Newborn Blood screening module. I attended various educative meetings and conferences focused on haemoglobinopathies.

From the information I gained I was able to develop an acute pain management protocol for adults which is in review and awaiting approval. I am also part of the ‘Workpackage 4 Kaduna Implementation Team’ and we are currently drafting a Newborn Screening pathway for the state which is also awaiting approval.

Overall, I want to say many thanks to the ARISE team and both my hosting and sending institutions. It has been an absolute pleasure working with you all, thanks for all your contributions and hard work to ensure that my secondment period ran smoothly.