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Date: 29 May 2020
Members' profiles: Shirley Turner
After a close relative passed away, Shirley Turner, a retired business woman from Quinton, decided it was time to give something back to the hospital where her loved one had been cared for so dearly. Five and a half years later Shirley explains why she decided to get involved.
What made you join the Trust as a member?
I spent a lot of time at the hospital while my relative was being treated here for leukaemia and I had grown to know a lot about the Trust, warts and all. I had been very impressed by the standard of care given but I often wondered if there was something I could do to make it even better. It was suggested to me that I should join a patient and carer council and share my views on what patients and relatives want. Sometimes all that is needed is a fresh outlook and this is something I can offer.
What do you think you bring to the Trust?
As a member of the council, I draw upon my professional expertise and my experience as a relative of a patient to advise the Trust on areas which could be improved. It's about providing the patient perspective so that management can make the right choices.
What do you get out of being involved?
Being a member of the Trust is important because it helps me maintain my skills as well as making a difference. Now that I am retired I have more time to spend on my interests such as DIY and visiting friends in Suffolk, but keeping involved in a busy hospital environment has helped me to keep up the skills that I used everyday when I was at work, such as my communication and my ability to analyse situations. This has really helped to boost my confidence.
What has been your biggest achievement since you joined?
I have grown very fond of the Trust over the years and I'm glad that I can play a part in making improvements where they are needed. I have been involved in the Premier Bedside Information Group which, among other things, has championed the use of bedside TVs. I have also contributing ideas for wayfinding in the new hospital and persuaded managers to refurbish the visitor facilities in Radiotherapy which, I have to say, has made a huge difference.
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