Four health workers have opened up about their time at the hospital as they get ready to depart after a combined 150 years of service.
Chief Nurse Rose Naylor led tributes to the departing three senior nurses and healthcare assistant, saying: “I would like to thank those leaving Health and Community Service this year for their dedication and care to Islanders. I want to particularly thank them for their perseverance and adaptability during the pandemic.
“This year has been challenging in so many ways and the professional attitude staff have shown has been a real testament to their experience and wisdom which we will miss. I wish those leaving a happy and fulfilling retirement and success with the new experiences they will have.”
Each reflected on their time in the hospital and what the future will hold...
Linda Hamill, Maternity Health Care Assistant (34 years' service)
Linda is leaving after more than three decades at the Maternity Ward, and plans to spend her retirement helping locate and rehome lost cats with the Cat Action Trust.
She started as a nurse at Overdale in 1980 working with elderly patients before moving to the Maternity Ward, experiencing its move from Le Bas.
Pictured: Linda (centre) and colleagues from the ward.
“The service was very different in those days, women stayed on the ward much longer whereas now it is encouraged that they return home with their babies. I also remember the gardens and we would grow fresh fruit and veg which were used by the chef on site."
Linda described her years at the hospital as the "privilege of a lifetime", adding: "Being there when somebody has their baby is a life changing experience and I feel truly honoured to have been a part of that process for so many new families. I would encourage young health care assistants to take up a career in maternity as it has truly been a valued experience.”
Sister Patricia Pike (47 years' service)
Sister Patricia Pike has given nearly half a century of service, having joined as a student nurse in 1975 after completing student training in Oxford.
She was first a staff nurse on Aubin Ward, which was then an acute Male Medical Ward and Coronary Care Unit where she treated patients with strokes, heart attacks, and pneumonia. In 2015, she became a Sister in Medical Day Care, providing treatment for acute and chronic conditions and assisting patients with general wellbeing.
Reflecting on her "long and happy career", the Sister said: "When I first came back to Jersey it remained common practice to sterilise equipment, I remember having to everything collect all used equipment and take it to the steriliser."
She added: “It became tradition for staff who left the ward to be dunked in a bubbly bath and sometimes even baked beans! I’m glad that won’t be happening to me!”
Pictured: There used to be a rather unusual tradition for departing staff...
Her retirement will be spent working on the Battle of Flowers and singing with the Healthy Harmony Choir.
Senior Staff Nurse, Lynne Grieve (30 years' service)
Lynne started as an Oncology staff nurse in the UK while studying for her degree in the late 80s before moving to Jersey where she became a Medical Staff Nurse on Bartlett Ward, caring for patients with a variety of medical conditions.
Lynne said: “After moving to Jersey, I realised that I wanted to specialise in Dermatology and I was lucky to be able to join the department 17 years ago which has offered varied experience in caring for Dermatology patients.”
Pictured: Lynne offered support to patients with a variety of conditions at Bartlett Ward.
Her retirement plans include having more time for herself, caring for her family, and possibly some voluntary work.
Dermatology Clinical Nurse Specialist, Diane Rolland (39 years' service)
Diane isn't retiring, but is leaving the hospital to work in a similar role at Indigo Medical Practice.
When she first qualified, she worked on the Male Surgical Ward before joining the Outpatient team as a Staff Nurse and later realising she had a "keen interest" in dermatology.
Pictured: Diane said she was "proud" of how colleagues adapted to the pandemic.
“I have had the pleasure of meeting some amazing people within Dermatology, both through my work at the General Hospital and with the British Dermatology Nursing Group. I always strived to meet the high standards of practice I have witnessed and hope that I have made a difference to those with life-long skin conditions including those suffering with skin cancer," Diane reflected.
Speaking about adapting to the challenges of the pandemic, Diane added: “Nurses across the hospital have had to adapt, often working in different departments as well as dealing with the discomfort of wearing PPE during long shifts. But the resilience and dedication shown by everyone in the hospital was inspiring and I was proud to have been part of those challenging moments.”
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