Karen

Karen 
PA Children’s Services

I had worked for 14 years in London for a big media company, but after I had my son I wanted to work locally but still for a big organisation. I had never worked in the NHS before but started working as an Administrator for Health Visitors in 2005 and also undertook some bank administration work. 

I have progressed through Children’s Services to date and am now a PA for the Head of C&YP Specialist & Community Nursing and Head of Child Development and Therapy Services.

The turning point for me was when my son had just started school and I became a single mum, suddenly I had to think about how I was going to sort child care in the school holidays! I asked my manager at the time if I could work TTO, but I could be flexible and work 1 week in the summer holidays, never expecting that this would be agreed – I was asked if I worked 2 weeks then this could be agreed.

This gave me work/home life balance - to me it is all about flexibility on both sides and this has continued throughout my time in the NHS.

All the way through my nearly 13 years with the NHS working for Children’s Services I feel I had so much support to enable me to learn and develop and move on to different roles. I enjoy the variety of my role and interacting with a wide range of people. I believe with good administration support in place this assists senior managers to do their job effectively and clinicians to concentrate on patient care.