Stroke Nurse Practitioner
Prince of Wales Hospital
“On my first day of nursing I was terrified. Nothing keeps me awake but I stayed awake the whole night. You can have all the theory, but it’s not until you’re there. It still feels like the first day on the job for me, although I’m no longer terrified, I’m constantly learning and challenged. I love learning about the brain and I can’t believe I’ve been in nursing for 17 years!
This year, I won the Nurse of the Year award through the International Nurses Day Awards at Prince of Wales Hospital. Working within the stroke unit, a big component (of my role) is to work closely with the families. Families can be so helpful with the care, and you need to work with them because it’s their loved one. I think advocating (for patients) is very compassionate. If you don’t think the care is what someone wants, then advocating for what they feel they need as part of their care is important... I worked in brain cancer for a long time.
The bad days tend to stick with you, but there were also really good days. I case managed patients, and when they were terminal and had been with me for a long time I had the opportunity to sit with them and talk to them for a while. There was a woman with a brain tumour that was a CEO of a company and had done so many amazing things. I had known her for ages. I was with her when she was diagnosed and through her treatment. I really got on with her as a person and learnt a lot from her, she had such a terrific attitude. She has really stayed with me.”