Paul Jebb – Finding the New Normal

BSc (Hons) Pre-Registration Nursing, 1996. BSc (Hons) Nursing, 2001. MA Health Services Management, 2012

Adapting to changing situations is nothing new in the NHS or indeed across the nursing profession, but when the world is faced with a pandemic we have to adapt and change extremely quickly, professionally and personally.

Covid-19 has brought challenges I have never faced in my career since first graduating from UCLan in 1996.

With working to respond to the challenges thrown at us by Covid-19, I also changed roles and changed Trusts, and am now the Associate Director of Nursing, Experience and Engagement at Lancashire and South Cumbria NHS Foundation Trust. Another step up the ladder but challenging at a time when we are discovering what the new ‘normal’ will be.

Despite the recent challenges, we’ve seen some very positive advances around how we now deliver healthcare. For example; in the way we use technology and the way we have made things happen to make a difference to care delivery. I think these developments are here to stay across the whole of the NHS.

My first two weeks in my new job have been really interesting. Meeting people within the social distancing rules as well as using lots of virtual meetings to get to know people and the organisation. Within the new role I will need to consider how I support the organisation, my team and others with engagement, whilst maintaining social distancing. Recently, I was interviewed live on Pendle Community Radio using Skype and phones, which was a challenge as it was a three-way live broadcast. We are all adapting to this change and I feel lots of things will not return to how they were so we will discover a new normal.


Home life needs to adapt too. The joy of home schooling whilst both parents work is a challenge but luckily my children understand the need and are also able to do their work (most of the time) whilst not irritating each other, and obviously, in between checking their own social media accounts! My children not seeing their grandparents or able to give them a hug is difficult, but they have supported their mum with shopping deliveries and maintained social distancing when they have been out for walks or on their bikes.

We still go out at 8pm on a Thursday to clap for carers, not just for our colleagues in the NHS, but also the countless number of key workers who are keeping our communities going.  The postal workers, refuse staff, retail staff, teachers, and many more all who are doing their jobs in challenging times and indeed finding their new normal.

11 May 2020