Dr Matthew Grundy-Bowers on 'Why I Became a Trainer'

Posted 23 Apr 2019

Date: 23 Apr 2019

Author: Dr Matthew Grundy-Bowers

Dr Matthew Grundy-Bowers, a consultant nurse in HIV/Sexual Health explains why he loves being a trainer. He reflects on his professional journey and how this has shaped him into the trainer that he is today.

As a consultant nurse a significant amount of my time is devoted to the training and development of others. I am a Faculty Registered Trainer (FRT) and work with doctors and nurses undertaking the FSRH DiplomaFSRH Letter of Competence in Subdermal Contraceptive Implants Techniques and the FSRH Letter of Competence in Intrauterine Techniques training. 

I started working in HIV/Sexual Health in 1994; clinical roles were very fixed between what was expected of a doctor and what was expected of a nurse.

In 1997 I became one of the first nurse practitioners in genito-urinary medicine in the country. It was an exciting and dynamic job and the team I worked with was amazing. As part of the role I was expected to take the English National Board for Nursing, Midwifery and Health Visiting (ENB) 901 Family Planning in Society course, which I completed in 1998. I was the first male nurse to take the course and none of the instructing nurses wanted to work with me because I was male. The course director took me under her wing and was my clinical trainer. I am eternally grateful, as she was an amazing and talented nurse who I learned much form.

Through her in the mid-2000s, I became involved in teaching the theory part of the Diploma of the Faculty of Family Planning (DFFP), now the FSRH Diploma, which I thoroughly enjoyed. It was great being involved in interdisciplinary teaching and working with fantastic SRH doctors and nurses. When the Faculty opened their qualifications to nurses I jumped at the change to take the DFSRH and subsequently the Postgraduate Award in Medical Education (PGAMedEd) at Keele University.

I love the interdisciplinary nature of sexual and reproductive health doctors and nurses working together and being trained together, by other doctors and nurses. I have learned much as a student/learner from different members of the MDT and feel that we all have something to contribute.

At the point of care delivery, there is an expectation that regardless of  the professional background of the clinician that the patient receives the same level of care and for that to happen, clinicians require the same knowledge skills and behaviours. In addition, I also like the parity of esteem of nurses taking the same qualifications as our medical colleagues.

The Postgraduate Award in Medical Education wetted my appetite for education and I went on to complete a PGCert in Higher Education with NMC recorded teacher status. In September I started a secondment to City University of London as a senior lecturer in advanced clinical practice two days a week.

Given my background, I spend a lot of my time teaching contraception, sexual health and HIV to both pre and post registration nurses. It is great teaching the future nurse and advanced nurse practitioner workforce, actively promoting the specialities and role modelling career possibilities.

Read more about becoming an FSRH Trainer here.