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Having completed my first week at ECG as a Clinical Development Manager, I thought what a perfect time to reflect on my journey as a nurse.

Growing up, as a young girl nursing wasn’t a career I had thought about to be honest – I enjoyed learning foreign languages, especially Spanish and I liked the learning/teaching environment I was provided with at school so naturally I thought I would fit into the role of a modern foreign language teacher rather well. So off I went to colleague to study Spanish and French with the view after the 2 years of colleague to go to university to study for a degree in teaching. It was during this period I had a massive change of heart. My grandad became very poorly, having an operation to remove a kidney and having to go on dialysis. This was a terrifying time I was lucky enough to have never had to visit a hospital before for myself or any other family member.

I still remember walking into the ward, tubes everywhere, machines bleeping I had no idea what was happening. The nurses on the ward were fantastic, calmingly explaining what this tube done and what this machine was doing and what it all meant. My grandad being a typical man born in the 1930’s had the utmost respect for the nurses, they were like his angels without the wings.  My grandad unfortunately passed away a few years later, but I never forgot how the nurses helped not only him but us as a family, I knew I had to give back I wanted to help people I wanted to make a difference to families lives.

I wanted to make my grandad proud, so at that point forward I had my heart set to become a nurse. I spent hours and hours researching into universities and what the courses entailed I was fortunate enough that with both my GCSE’s and A level results I was able to go straight into university onto the Adult nursing course. My 3 years at university really embedded the theory and practice for me to put into place for my first role as a qualified nurse, whenever times got hard I would think of my grandad and remember why I wanted to be a nurse.

Upon qualifying, I got my first post as a qualified nurse within a busy trauma orthopaedic unit – it was a massive learning curve but I thrived off such a fast past unit. I had a massive passion for teaching our nurses of the future when we would have student nurses on placement. As nursing students, entering onto a new environment not knowing what to expect is difficult. Yes, patient care is the “same” everywhere, but they must be comfortable with the environment they are placed in. I wanted to make this process as easy as possible, to support them and ensure they had a good understanding and concept of nursing skills.

I knew I had to use this passion in training for my next job move within nursing. I therefore took this passion and interest to a private Home Healthcare company where I worked as a Clinical Trainer I was in my element being able to train and teach not only qualified nurses but also non clinical staff, carers, other health care professionals in different roles to myself. That was my latest role before commencing here with ECG. Although I have only been here for a little over a week I am thoroughly enjoying my new role I am very excited and enthusiastic about this coming year, I know I can face challenges because of the determination and motivation to achieve my goals.

It is funny as a healthcare professional looking back at how many patients you have met, how many families you have helped, how many other healthcare professions you have taught, you feel you are just doing your job to the best of your ability without really thinking of a longer lasting impact you have made . However, I still remember those nurses from many years ago who through their dedication and kindness made me want to come into this profession.

Written by Danielle Anderson ( ECG Clinical Development Manager), Thursday 8th October 2020