12th May 2020

It’s International Nurses Day on Tuesday 12th May and to mark the occasion we wanted to acknowledge the extraordinary work that our nurses have been carrying out in our care homes during these unprecedented times.

International Nurses Day was set up back in 1965 to recognise and honour the hard work of nurses around the globe - a sentiment more important than ever as they lead the frontline during the coronavirus outbreak.

The 12th May was chosen as the date to celebrate nurses as it coincided with the birthday of Florence Nightingale. This year’s celebrations were set to be the biggest yet as 2020 marks the 200th anniversary of her birth. Although the coronavirus outbreak has made formal celebrations more difficult to organise, we are ‘shining a light’ to recognise and celebrate the importance of nursing professionals in a care home setting.

Debbie Dollner, Chief Operating Officer at Guild Care, said: “Our nurses have been putting themselves at risk on the frontline every day. That’s been really tough for them. They’ve been doing extra shifts, sleeping over to be onsite to help manage staffing levels and helping and supporting other colleagues. 

“They really have been extraordinary, it’s not just the difficult work they have undertaken but the leadership role they have shown within our homes has been exceptional. We know that nursing is a vocation, and this has been so apparent these last few weeks as everyone has worked tirelessly to control the spread of coronavirus within our homes.

“It’s been so difficult for the families of our residents who have not been able to see their loved ones. But our nurses have really stepped up going above and beyond to bridge that gap to become the family that the residents haven’t got right now and be so supportive and to reassure everyone.”

Two such nurses working on the frontline are Shirley and Denisa, who are Registered Nurses at our Caer Gwent nursing home.

Asked what her favourite part of being a Guild Care nurse is, Shirley said: "What I love about the role here is the relationships you build with the residents. They’re just lovely. It’s so nice because they know me, I know them, we know each other’s little quirks and it’s just nice. You worry about them.

"When all of this started with corona, I just thought to myself 'I can’t get it, whatever happens', 'cause I've got to work, to look after them. It’s my extended family. I feel really settled here. I just love it."

Guild Care nurse

Registered Nurse, Shirley

Shirley explained that having fixed shifts was one of the appeals of joining Guild Care. She said: “When my daughter was little, it was so nice to know I was working the same nights every week and they weren’t going to change. I could fit everything around that.”

Shirley also added: “The structure is good from management down to the clinical lead, it really works. And you keep your clinical competence. I think some nurses think that if you come into a nursing home setting, they will lose their clinical skills, but here we take residents bloods, change catheters, dressing, etc. so you don’t miss out on that kind of work. You just have to get stuck in. It keeps me going."

Another nurse at Caer Gwent is Denisa. She commented: “If anyone wants to come and join us to be a part of our team, they will find a lovely, warm home with good people and lovely residents which they will treat with respect, kindness and compassion. It’s not just us giving support and providing care for residents, they do the same for us!”

Registered Nurse, Denisa

If you are interested in finding more about nursing at Guild Care, please visit our Registered Nurse recruitment page: www.guildcare.org/nurses

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