ERAS Nursing group bids farewell to Dorthe Hjort Jakobsen

dortheIt is with a heavy heart that we must say farewell to our friend and colleague Dorthe Hjort Jakobsen. After chairing the ERAS Society Nursing Group for several years, Dorthe has decided to step down and concentrate on her role as local improvement facilitator in Denmark. She will continue to keep a watchful eye on the ERAS Society’s work and will remain a useful resource for anyone that needs her advice and support in the future.

Dorthe has worked closely with Prof Henrik Kehlet for over the last 2 decades and if Henrik is described as the Godfather or the King of ERAS, then Dorthe is the Queen!! Prof Fearon often referred to Dorthe as “The ERAS Queen!” Her early contribution to the role of the nurse in “Fast-Trak” was instrumental to the development of our current roles as ERAS Nurses.

She has presented at numerous national and international conferences and has published several papers within “Fast-Trak” and ERAS care pathways and the role of the nurse within these pathways. She has always been an advocate for multi-disciplinary team working and for the nurse to be recognised as a clinical practitioner whose role was just as important as any other member of the team. The cornerstone of any successful ERAS pathway is the team and Dorthe always strived to promote that.

When asked, Dorthe feels very mixed emotions; sad to be stepping down as chair of this group but excited that ERAS programmes are being implemented on such an international scale. She is very proud of the accomplishments the ERAS Nurses have achieved over the last 20 years and she has enjoyed meeting and advising many nurses and teams about “fast-trak” and ERAS programmes since its original inception in the mid-1990’s.

She would like to see the Nursing group and the ERAS website used more as helpful resources for nurses:

“The website should be used as a place for inspiration – examples of nursing care plans/ diaries and of course, the patient perspective. I love that the Patient Voice videos are on there! We should get some more stories from patients and their families. After all – we all want the same thing – better outcomes for our patients!”

angieIn the interim, it is with an even heavier heart (just kidding) that I have agreed to be interim chair of the ERAS Nursing Group. “My name is Angie Balfour and I have been an ERAS nurse for just a little while (since 1994) so I guess it’s only fair that the 2nd oldest ERAS nurse takes over this role!!”

I have been the ERAS nurse in Edinburgh for several years working under the very watchful and supportive guidance of Prof Ken Fearon who sadly passed away at the beginning of September. The role of ERAS Nurse was very important to him and the fact that there are now lots of ERAS Nurses around the globe had made him and the other founding members of the ERAS Society very proud.

With that in mind – it is my job to make sure we use this nursing group – to ask questions – to share experiences and lessons learned – to meet at congresses for G & T.

My contact details are:

07896 293201

Thank you very much Dorthe for all you hard work over the years – it has been a tremendous honour and privilege to work with you.

Angie Balfour.