Joy, Senior Staff Nurse

Joy Watling.jpg

Why did you want to work in Orthopaedics?

I completed my Return to Nursing Practice course in 2015 and was lucky enough to be accepted onto the Trauma and Orthopaedic Ward at Peterborough City Hospital to consolidate and update my skills. My experience as a Nurse previously was mainly in Orthopaedics and I knew this would be where I felt most competent. My thirst to continue to expand my skills led me to apply to work in the Fracture and Orthopaedic Outpatient Department where I have gained a whole new skillset, now being able to treat complex wounds and apply/ change plaster casts along with running clinics. My working hours now fit beautifully into helping my daughter with her childcare and so allowing me to enjoy being a grandmother. 

Tell us about your role? 

My working week can be quite varied. I can be working in the Elective or Fracture clinics or Rheumatology clinics supporting the doctors and patients or treating patients in the plaster room where we see patients with a variety of needs from complex wound management to applying, removing and changing plasters following trauma or surgery. The role requires a solid knowledge base and an ability to think outside the box adapting the experience we have to meet our patients’ changing needs. We often support the Emergency Department with applying more complex casts and cater for the needs of patients with orthopaedic problems throughout the hospital. It’s a busy week but we have an exceptional team and I am truly proud to be part of it. I go home at the end of the day with a massive sense of achievement and know that whatever happens we will support each other through it.

What do you like most about Team North West Anglia?

Whilst working within the trust I have been able to gain a great deal of experience working in both Peterborough and Hinchingbrooke and also in the City Care Centre. In my experience within the Trust, I have always been supported and my seniors have been adaptable and understanding. I have felt comfortable to do extra shifts in different departments and everywhere I have worked I have been greeted with support and gratitude for my help.

How has your role developed during your career?

I started my nurse training in Peterborough in the late 1980’s and continued to work in Peterborough for a few years before accepting a job at The Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital in London. Marriage and family brought me back to Peterborough and I worked in the NHS and Private sector until having children when I decided to take a break from Nursing. As my children grew up I felt I would like to return to nursing and have never looked back since signing up for the Return to Practice programme.

During the Covid-19 pandemic our department was transformed from a clinic area into the Urgent Treatment Centre almost overnight. Our working hours and job roles changed but we were still able to utilise our skills to support the ED staff to care for the patients coming through the department. We were all able to embrace a new way of working, forged new alliances and learnt a lot of new skills, experiences we are able to draw on as we slowly begin to recover and return to more normal practices.