A WORCESTER student nurse who was inspired to go into nursing by the care she received at Worcestershire Royal Hospital has been shortlisted for a national nursing award.
Helena Corbett has been a regular patient since the age of nine after being diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease – a lifelong condition where parts of the digestive system become inflamed.
Throughout her childhood Helena continued to attend the children’s clinic every six weeks for blood tests, medication and ongoing investigations, as well as being admitted to the children’s ward on a number of occasions due to complications with her condition.
By the age of 10, the experience of these regular visits and the dedicated care and treatment she received from the clinic had inspired Helena to want to go into children’s nursing herself.
After choosing to transition into adult care services at the earliest opportunity to take a greater role in her on-going care, Helena was intent on accomplishing her dream of becoming a children’s nurse to help other children who have conditions like her own.
She was accepted onto her first choice of nurse training degree at the University of Birmingham and in the second year of her student nurse training, Helena was able to choose where she undertook her next training placement.
Keen to go back to where her desire to become a nurse originated, Helena undertook a four week placement in the clinic at Worcestershire Royal Hospital.
“I was told I could arrange my placement anywhere, so I chose to go back to a place that I had been able to experience as a patient. The idea of being able to go back to the Children’s Clinic ‘on the other side’ as a student really interested me,” she said.
Helena was nominated in April and then shortlisted as one of ten national finalists, for the Student Children’s Nurse of the Year award in the prestigious Student Nursing Times Awards.
“I was amazed to be shortlisted for the award against so many other amazing nurses and entries. My journey has not always been easy; there have been relapses along the way, but I have always remained strong and resilient because of the overwhelming care, support and empathy from the Children’s Clinic team,” she said.
Helena has also begun to volunteer sharing her personal experience at a local Inflammatory Bowel Disease Parent and Patient Panel. The panel hosts events for children and families with the condition and Helena shares her story, reassuring them they are not alone and with the hope of inspiring others to follow her path into nursing.
The hard-working nurse has been offered a job at Birmingham Children’s Hospital this autumn after she completes her degree.
Helena writes an online blog about her experiences of treatment and her student nursing journey at www.meyouandcrohns.wordpress.com