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Helen Connaughton, a nurse working at Tallaght Hospital, has become the first Clinical Nurse Specialist in Ireland in the area of Inherited Cardiac Conditions.

Her success marks an important milestone for cardiology and nursing services nationally and in Tallaght Hospital.

As the first Irish Clinical Nurse Specialist in this field, Ms Connaughton is now a national leader in this area and demonstrates the investment and advancements that have taken place in cardiac services at Tallaght Hospital.

Ms Connaughton was a Clinical Nurse Manager in the Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY) unit for eight years.

The CRYP unit aims to provide comprehensive specialist evaluation of those diagnosed with or at risk from inherited cardiac conditions, including families who have lost someone to sudden cardiac death.

It was developed as a collaboration between Tallaght Hospital, St James’s Hospital, St Vincent’s University Hospital and Trinity College Dublin and is located at Tallaght Hospital. Ms Connaughton’s post was initially funded by The Patches Trust, and for the last five years she has been funded by the charity Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY Ireland), who fund much of the activity at the CRYP Unit.

Speaking of her achievement Helen Connaughton said:

“It is a great honour to achieve this success and to be part of this great leap forward for cardiac services in Ireland.

“I want to thank all my family and friends who supported me over the years.

“I am looking forward to continuing to bring my developed skills and experiences to the service of patients who may be suffering with cardiac diseases at Tallaght Hospital.

“The Hospital, the charities and my colleagues have provided great support to me over the years and I am delighted to be part of a team that is doing so much good for our patients.”

Hilary Daly, Director of Nursing at Tallaght Hospital, added:

“We are all delighted with Helen’s success.

“Tallaght Hospital has a strong ethos of ‘People caring for people’ and Helen achieving this professional accreditation enables us to put this ethos into place all the more clearly, in the area of cardiac services.

“Helen’s additional expertise now as a clinical nurse specialist is a huge asset for the great work that takes place in the unit.”

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