Meet Julian Layhe


Julian Layhe is a Clinical Endoscopist.

What attracted you to a career in gastroenterology/endoscopy?

My career in endoscopy began as a result of an incorrect bank shift! I was a band 5 RN and thought I'd be working on the Upper GI ward but I'd actually been booked into the endoscopy department. That was over 10 years ago and I've never looked back! I learnt how to assist with a variety of procedures from ERCP to Necosectomy and when I realised, I wanted to be the one holding the scope. I applied to train as a Clinical Endoscopist (CE) and specialised 5 years ago.

What advancement in gastroenterology/endoscopy are you most excited about and why?

I found it difficult to choose just one because there is continuous research and fantastic technological advancement within endoscopy, but currently I am most excited about the network of Clinical Endoscopists that is developing in the South West. This has been fronted by the South West Endoscopy Training Academy (SWETA) who hold frequent conferences and training for all staff within endoscopy to share experiences, learn new skills, and support each other within our roles. I've had the opportunity to present at SWETA conferences and am a faculty member for their training courses, so have seen how positive the network is for staff education and moral, while providing leadership of best practice within endoscopy.

What do you enjoy most about your work?

The role as a Clinical Endoscopist was the perfect fit for me as its a blend of practical hands-on skills while remaining patient focussed. I enjoy that I am able to provide a holistic continuation of patient care as I am responsible for organising follow ups, communicating results, and prescribing medications and that I frequently have the opportunity to work with different specialities. My work also allows me to practice across multiple county hospitals where I meet new people and share our practice experience. I feel it's fundamental that the patients we are caring for have the best experience possible and as a CE, I feel I have the ability to influence change and provide leadership in best practice and service development. I feel lucky to have a role that allows trust and autonomy while being supported by the other members of my team.

What is one thing you would change?

I think endoscopy as a speciality is still quite misunderstood so I would enjoy staff from other departments to come and see what different procedures we do and how it fits within the patients care pathway.

What is the best advice you've been given in your career?

I've worked with so many inspirational people during my time as a nurse but I've recently been mentored by a consultant nurse who has been my biggest influence. During times of imposter syndrome or feeling like my experience is lacking, I've been told 'Yes you can!' rather than 'No you can't'. This has been the most valuable advice I have received and has given me confidence in my own abilities.

What does being a BSG member mean to you?

Being a member of the BSG allows me to easily access updates in guidance or research which I use in my day-to-day role and access to a fantastic educational platform, members-only events, and mentoring support. It's a supportive community of like-minded people who are passionate about gold standard patient care, which I feel aligns with my own values and is fundamental to my practice.

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