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Closer Look: Community Midwife Manager

07 July 2018

Closer Look

Each month we interview a different member of staff or volunteer at Southend University Hospital and gain a closer look at how they help deliver patient care at the Trust. This month we meet Community Midwife Manager, Terri Jackson, who has been working at the hospital for 45 years.

Tell us about yourself?

I started at the hospital in 1973 as a student nurse and did my registered nurse training between1973-1976.

Following my qualification as a state registered nurse, I went on to complete my midwifery training - which was then a one-year course if you were already trained as a nurse. I worked as a staff midwife, ward sister, and by 1980 I was a community midwife, based around the Leigh-on-Sea area.

Always working full time, it allowed me a good balance of close client contact, delivering and caring for the families over some 35 years. I really enjoy being part of my community. My two children became very understanding of living with the unpredictable hours of a community midwife, and their support has been invaluable.

What are the best bits of your job?

Undoubtedly, trying to make a positive difference to people's lives each day. With that focus, it's always been a pleasure to go to work. The staff are like a second family to me.

Pregnancy and birth is one of the most vulnerable times for women and their families, and it's vital we provide that support and reassurance.

What work achievements are you most proud of?

I've made lifelong friendships with both colleagues and clients. I'm also very proud to be able to deliver high quality care, achieved by both the fantastic training I continue to receive in our unit and the high standards I set myself. Being there for people when they need you most is priceless.

How does it feel to be invited to Westminster Abbey as part of NHS 70?

I was very surprised and humbled when I read the nomination. It really brought my career into focus and definitely made me feel valued. I'm retiring at the end of August, so the timing is lovely.

I plan to return later on in the year, and work fewer hours as a midwife. It's not something I could give up completely. Hopefully it will keep my mind active and I can go back to looking after people - that remains my passion.

NR 45b (2018)