Joanne Balloch

Haemodynamics Clinical Specialist, Edwards Lifesciences (UK) Ltd

Q: What does your role at Edwards involve?

A: My role as a Haemodynamics Clinical Specialist for Edwards Lifesciences critical care division, provides clinical support for the Vigileo / FloTrac minimally invasive Cardiac Output monitor system within the Scottish and North of England Territories. I work closely with two account managers; we work very much as a team ensuring that our customers receive education and support in relation to their clinical and product needs. The Vigileo is so versatile and easy to use that I get the chance to work in a variety of settings such as Theatres, ICU/HDU and A&E departments. During clinical evaluations, my role allows me to provide support to the Anaesthetists, as well as providing education and training to members of staff who will come into contact with the Vigileo. Once the system has been adopted, it is my responsibility to ensure that members of the multi-disciplinary team are trained in using the Edwards minimally invasive cardiac monitor; this involves tailoring education programmes to meet the needs of individual departments. Ongoing training and support is provided, this gives me a great opportunity to build a strong partnerships within each hospital.

Q: What is your professtonal background?

A: I come from a nursing background and have over five years experience of working in an Intensive Care setting. I enjoy critical care nursing and have a keen interest in anaesthetics. I do miss nursing in the NHS; however, I feel that my clinical experience and understanding of the critical care environment has proved invaluable to my current role.

Q: What attracted you to Edwards Lifesciences Ltd.?

A: I was working in medical sales when the opportunity arose to work for Edwards. I jumped at the chance, coming from a clinical background I had hands on experience with Edwards’s products and was well aware of the high quality of products, and the portfolio range which Edwards had to offer. It is very exciting to work for such a forward thinking, innovative company. I am very proud to be part of the UK team which has helped Edwards become the global leaders in Minimally Invasive Cardiac Output monitoring.

Q: What do you think your experience can do to advance the interests of Edwards?

A: Edwards have maintained a reputation over the years as a supportive company. In our Hemofiltration division, Clinical Specialist’s have worked in partnership with Account Managers for many years. The specialist team has helped bring about change through education and support to the extent that Hemofiltration is now an established common place procedure. One of my goals is to provide this level of education within the Haemodynamic arena. Demonstrating our belief that earlier monitoring will lead to improved clinical results. This is a relatively new role in our division but feedback from the Anaesthetic and nursing teams to date suggests that it’s a welcome one.

Q: Do you have any new (anaesthesia related) ideas on the drawing board?

A: Edwards Life science has created the Essence Educational programme, which I am involved in organizing. This programme highlights the advantages of Minimally Invasive Hemodynamic Monitoring in treatment and therapy of high risk patients during surgical procedures. This course will be UK wide, and we hope in the near future to run an Essence programme for nursing staff.

Q: What changes do you see occurring in the anaesthetics and healthcare industry over the next few years?

A: I think it’s essential that as units within hospitals work closer together to achieve improved clinical outcomes that we continue to supply products that allow clinicians and Nurses to achieve this. Having a device Like FloTrac / Vigileo is a testament to this ideal, allowing the patient to be monitored early during Surgery and again in ITU with the same device.

Q: Do you consider your company as innovative?

A: Edwards Life SciencesAbsolutely, I do. We continue to develop significant clinical tools that provide anaesthetists the ability to monitor patients earlier and easier. FloTrac allows the monitoring of Continuous Cardiac Output & Stroke Volume Variation direct from the arterial waveform. Our Presep catheter allows the monitoring of ScV02 incorporated in a Central Venous Catheter. We have just released a paediatric version called Pediasat which again is a healthcare first.

Q: What is your focus and what do you offer the anaesthetics industry?

A: My focus is to provide training and education. If an anaesthetist is using our product for the first time, or thereafter, it’s my role to provide that support. If nurses would like education surrounding the theory on the use of our products, how to interpret the data it generates or hands on training, I’ll provide that territory support.

Q: And finally, what does the future hold for Edwards?

A: Having developed the leading device in invasive Cardiac Output monitoring globally, it is now very exciting to have reached this position in minimally invasive Cardiac Output monitoring. It’s evidence that the hard work put into understanding what sort of device the Clinicians wanted to use on day to day basis has paid off. Obviously, this also means that I’m extremely busy covering the territory and look forward to meeting some of your readers soon!!