Nursing and midwifery people stories for NHS England

No day is ever the same in nursing and especially in an emergency department, explains Amanda Deamer who works at York Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust. For her Year of the Nurse and Midwife profile Amanda describes her work helping patients and explains the route she followed to achieve her career goal.

My career in nursing began in 2014 when I began work as a home carer in the community. When I left school and college a nursing career seemed well beyond my reach due to not having the correct qualifications. Whilst working as a home carer, however, I discovered the role was one that made a huge difference to individuals’ lives.

In 2015 I took the opportunity to apply for a healthcare assistant post in the York Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust. I was over the moon when I was offered a position at White Cross Court rehabilitation unit, an opportunity which gave me a baseline for my future career in nursing. It provided me with the skills and knowledge I could expand on in future roles. After being a healthcare assistant for a year or so I applied for a role as a healthcare assistant in the main hospital’s acute medical unit (AMU) as I knew the hospital was where I was destined to work.

I was successful in my interview and began working on the AMU. It was the place where I began to excel in my role and take on extra responsibilities that enabled me to build up my portfolio as a healthcare professional. Whilst on AMU I began to explore other roles for which I could use the transferable skills I had built up to deliver the best patient-centred care. I applied for a senior healthcare assistant role and was successful. This opportunity took me to the world of orthopaedics and after a period of time I applied to the emergency department where I work now.

April 2019 saw me complete a Foundation Degree (Nursing Associate) at the University of York – a fabulous opportunity I thought would never be possible, but here I am practicing as a Nursing Associate in the emergency department. I mainly work in the ambulance assessment area, triaging and assessing patients who present with acute illness. My role is to manage patient care and deliver treatment for patients as required. No day is ever the same when it comes to nursing in the emergency department so there is no typical daily routine. I work mixed-shift patterns in all areas of the department.

Every day can be challenging in nursing. I have met many individuals throughout my career – patients and colleagues – who have helped and supported me in overcoming some of the biggest challenges in my life. Every day in nursing I like to believe I, and every individual in this profession, make a difference to people. I will never forget the voices of patients who thank me for what I have done and how much it has meant to them at a difficult time in their life.

To someone considering a studying for a career in nursing or midwifery I would say: Go for it, take the opportunity where you can and never give up on your dream. There will be ups and downs throughout your journey, but the positives will always outweigh the negatives. I have taken on many challenges throughout my nursing journey, but you learn every day and if you try you may always succeed. In the words quoted by Florence Nightingale herself, ‘Live your life while you have it. Life is a splendid gift. There is nothing small in it’.

• With thanks to Amanda Deamer and York Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust.