10 June 2020
Kristian Lane, the Lead Nurse for Offender Care, was inspired to enter into nursing through his Christian faith.
One line from the book of Matthew says: “I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.”
This was such a strong line that Kristian with his natural caring personality, felt compelled to enter the profession and found his calling within Offender Care Nursing.
That was in 2009 when he first went to work in HMP High Down in Surrey aged 22 as a Band 5 Registered Nurse.
In that time he’s had a fairly rapid ascent becoming the Lead Nurse for Offender Care, a Band 8C role, three weeks before lockdown.
While that may sound rapid, for Kristian it is simply an expression of how much he wants to develop the role of the Offender Care Nurse, combined with having had some good mentors.
Kristian, 32, said: “The first two to three months when I first started working in Offender Care were quite difficult because it is so different, but you get used to it and now this is my dream job. This is because you do a lot of work on your own in the prison and it can be an eye-opening experience when you meet a prisoner who’s been in prison for many years for an horrific crime, but if someone has committed a crime, even a horrendous offence, we see only a patient and that’s a characteristic you need.
“What you find is that prisoners aren’t scary – maybe the odd one will be but generally prisoners are just ordinary men or women whom you would probably have a conversation with.
“I have a passion for Offender Care Nursing. For me it’s an area that has so much potential for people to develop in and is so exciting and so different; every day the people you get to mix with include colleagues, prisoners and prison officers.
“I’d add that you are always looked after by your nursing colleagues and the prison officers who will always give you little tips on how to deal with certain people.”
Kristian’s ideal Offender Care Nurse is someone who combines a mix of humour and resilience underpinned with a caring attitude.
“I think some prisoners might think Offender Care Nurses are part of the custodial or justice set up. So it is important that all nurses display the ethos of ‘Caring not Judging’.”