Mary NHS70

HCP Team Leader Rural West

The calibre and quality of NHS staff is exceptional, something you notice if you step outside of it for a day. NHS staff have a collective professionalism and camaraderie that is quite simply world class.

I work for the Children’s Community Integrated Workforce as a Healthy Child Programme Team Leader for the Rural West team, a role I have been proud to hold since 2010. My background is Nursing Midwifery and Health Visiting.

The NHS has been responsible for all my training, my degrees, my on-going development over the years, and my current research studies. It’s also provided almost every Nursing role I have held since qualifying at Manchester Royal Infirmary in 1980.

I come from a background of Medicine and Nursing with my own mother serving the NHS as a District Nurse until the age of 72, something I am not sure I will ever match up to!

The NHS has also seen me safely through childbirth, broken ankles and numerous visits to A&E over the years with sports injury prone offspring. Without doubt the best bit of the NHS is the people working in it.

The NHS is renowned for its free healthcare at the point of need. We are all incredibly proud of that ideal and despite the old ship creaking at the joints at times, every day wonderful people are doing extraordinary things here. Every birthday should be celebrated, and 70 is a big birthday to get together for a few moments and think about what a great organisation this is and how very lucky we all are.

Every day I have proud moments - I couldn't possibly pick one. From our wonderful Admin staff who always sound so welcoming on the phone, to the sensitivity and compassion I witness between staff and families. I have literally laughed and cried with colleagues and team members over the patients and clients we look after at times. That is the NHS to me, that's why we do this job.

A special mention has to go to the wonderful Gastroenterology team at the Heartlands Hospital in Birmingham under Mr Charles Hendrickse, Mr Ahmad Hawash, Mr Sharad Karandikar and their wonderful Nursing team. In 2015 they took my Mother through eight hours of delicate life-saving surgery late on a Friday afternoon and into the night, despite the fact that they had already worked many many hours that week. Their dedication and assurance to me that they were going to do their very best despite the fact she was 82 years old was humbling. My mother is alive and well today thanks to the skill of those surgeons - I will always be indebted to them.