2020 has been a year of challenges for our nurses and midwifes. Given that it has been designated The Year of the Nurse and the Midwife, we want keep celebrating the importance of their roles and thank them for the extraordinary work they are doing.
This month we spoke to Mary Morgan, Director of Strategy, Performance and Service Transformation in order to know a bit more about her role and her personal perspective regarding the challenges nurses have been facing during the pandemic.
I always wanted to be a nurse, except when I wanted to be a car mechanic, and started my Registered Nurse Training at the Western Infirmary in Glasgow on 10 May 1982, until I graduated in June 1985.
My first experience to nursing was as a Staff Nurse was in Dermatology at the Western Infirmary, before I moved onto Acute Medicine two years later. I held my ‘hands on’ nursing career as the Ward Sister in a female acute medical ward, at the Western Infirmary until I moved into nursing management, and then general management at the Royal Alexandra Hospital in Paisley. I’ve loved every job that I’ve held throughout my career, and have felt particularly privileged to be a part of people’s lives – providing support at times that we don’t ordinarily witness – at birth, through illness and recovery, and through death and bereavement.
My nursing career has provided a strong foundation for my whole health service career in senior management. It instilled in me the importance of putting the user at the centre of services we provide, and has, I believe, added credibility to my approach to service design, delivery and leadership.
It was with mixed feelings that I chose not to revalidate my Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) registration in 2018 but once a nurse, always a nurse and using one’s knowledge and experience indirectly does not require registration.
The COVID-19 response allowed me to re-join the NMC Emergency Register. It was something I felt I should do, just in case I (along with others) was needed to fulfil a direct nursing role. Thankfully, this has not been required but in this Year of the Nurse, I have been pleased to reaffirm my commitment to nursing.
My career has been hugely satisfying and I would encourage anyone thinking of becoming a nurse to take up the opportunities it presents as a caring career.