How did you start your career in health?
My career in health began 45 years ago when I commenced my nurse training. Dedication and a strong work ethic ensured I continually developed my nursing skills to achieve my goals. I worked in various disciplines including surgery, intensive care, the community and education.
I pursued my education gaining a Nursing Degree, followed by a teaching qualification. This allowed me to successfully work in conjunction with the University of Central Lancashire supporting and teaching nursing students. My penultimate role was Matron for District Nurses. I retired from my role but as most nurses do, I returned as a Staff Nurse, working in Neuro Rehabilitation and finally as a Bank Nurse.
How did you reach your current position?
I decided after retirement that I wanted to give something back to my local hospital as I have had an excellent career with many opportunities. I still wished to work within a care role and the breast feeding support role was perfect. Following a 2 day course and supported by fantastic mentors I commenced my role within the Baby Friendly Team.
Who or what has been your inspiration?
My driving force has always been a thirst for learning and knowledge and I aspired to colleagues who mentored me and taught me the skills I needed to be a caring, compassionate, competent nurse.
What advice would you give others on reaching their potential or embarking on a career in health?
A career in health requires a strong character in order to cope with the many challenges you have to face. A formidable work ethic is vital to manage long hours, deal with the public, and work as an effective team member. There is a need to update your knowledge continually in order to provide the best care possible. Being able to identify care needs is paramount and empathy is one if the most important skills you require and is something that cannot be taught.
What does 2020 #YearoftheNurseandMidwife mean to you?
Year of the nurse/ midwife is a time to recognise and celebrate how far these roles have evolved. From the essential caring bedside nurse to Nurse Practitioners and Prescribers. The patient/client should still be our focus and the core of any nurse/midwife role.
Favourite quotes of all time
"I keep six honest serving men, they taught me all I know. Their names are What and Why and When and Why and Where and Who."
"Let us never consider ourselves finished nurses, we must keep learning all of our lives."