The Royal College of Nursing (RCN) has developed an online information hub to support its members during the Covid-19 pandemic.
The nursing union has partnered with digital preservation specialist Preservica in developing the hub as a source of medical and clinical guidance for its 450,000 members.
They are using the company’s digital preservation and discovery platform to quickly capture the material and make it securely accessible.
So far the RCN archives team has made more than 1,000 historical clinical guidance publications available online through a secure portal. This complements the latest information on tackling infectious diseases and the Government’s advice on the RCN website.
The team is also capturing and preserving website bulletins related to Covid-19 and working with the communications department to collect testimonials of frontline nurses for sharing on social media. The aim is to document the contribution of the college and its members for future generations and enable it to supply evidence of its role and actions.
Fiona Bourne, archive manager at the RCN, said: “A lot of nursing students have just qualified and they are going straight into the workforce to tackle the pandemic.
“Without that depth of experience, it’s part of our job to ensure that they have access to vital clinical information as well as the most up-to-date advice and guidance so they can come up to speed safely and quickly.”
Storage for story
The RCN is also participating in the #ourcovid19story initiative launched by Preservica that is donating additional free cloud storage to users for relevant collections. The company said this has made it possible for the archive team to collect and make information available without worrying about storage space.
Bourne added: “If, as seems likely in the future, there is a public enquiry about the government’s response to the pandemic, we’ll be able to provide evidence promptly and effectively to the relevant body.
“That same evidence will show what the organisation has done in terms of advice and support for nurses and care workers across the NHS and the independent sector, and the contribution of key staff to government advisory committees.”