A day in the life of an IG professional

Pauline and Vicky from the Lincolnshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, explain their key values and aims embedded in their everyday lives as information governance (IG) professionals.

Pauline Ward, Information Governance Officer

Pauline Ward

At Lincolnshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, our ‘open door’ and collaborative working encourages all staff to comfortably ask for guidance and assistance in relevant data protection matters, in a safe and confidential way.

My day involves contact with staff across the trust, offering a listening ear, empathy, encouragement and support, alongside supporting the rest of the IG team.

I also deliver data protection compliance training for all staff.  I try to use recent scenarios as illustration of why staff need to be aware of this complicated subject and understand why they have to follow a process with all data protection aspects of their work irrespective of their role or banding.  We also offer bespoke training in specific teams in work environments.

Whilst IG and data protection is a complicated subject that most staff shy away from, I enjoy breaking it down to assist staff. It’s a busy place to be every day, but so worthwhile.

Vicky Baxter-Poole, Information Governance Manager at Lincolnshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust

Vicky Baxter-Pool

IG has been perceived as “red tape” and a “blocker” and we are working hard every day to change those perceptions.  Communication is often lost in IG, as we get carried away in the formal and technical processes.

Delivering IG on a level that everyone understands is incredibly important to us. It is about finding the most appropriate language for the situation and using our knowledge effectively. We often go out to clinical sites to ensure visibility and build relationships with staff. Engagement at this level is invaluable to the way we deliver our service.

We are there to enable, support and appropriately train staff to ensure they are confident in the decisions they make in high pressure situations. Staff shouldn’t be reluctant to pick up the phone to ask for help, we should be their first port-of-call if they need IG help. Being able to provide staff with the right tools to do their job effectively, to support improving patient care, is at the heart of everything we do.