Staff from across Cornwall’s health service are sharing memories and proudest moments to celebrate the 75th birthday of the NHS.
They have recorded messages about what life is like caring for patients and their families across the Duchy and Isles of Scilly, including those who have dedicated their entire working lives to the organisation.
Colleagues from the Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust, Cornwall Partnership NHS Foundation Trust and NHS Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Integrated Care Board are among those featured in this special montage, which reveals what life is like, both on the frontline and behind the scenes.
Some are also attending a special service at Westminster Abbey on Wednesday 5 July, alongside Their Royal Highnesses, the Duke and Duchess of Edinburgh, senior government and political leaders, health leaders and celebrities. Read more here: Cornwall colleagues to attend special NHS 75 service at Westminster Abbey – NHS Cornwall and Isles of Scilly (icb.nhs.uk)
While on Wednesday evening, landmarks from Cornwall to Cumbria will be lit up blue to mark the anniversary, including St Michael’s Mount. Read more here: NHS England » Light up blue for NHS75!
Our health leaders are among those who have shared their memories, stand-out moments and thank you messages.
Chief Executive of NHS Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Integrated Care Board, Kate Shields, said: “What does the NHS being 75 mean to me? I am really proud to work for the NHS. I never, ever thought I would. My mother was a nurse, and I was absolutely determined I was not going to be one until I worked on a care of the elderly ward with women with dementia, and I absolutely loved it.
“It has been a big part of my life and I feel very proud to have contributed to some amazing care over the 38 odd years that I have been working in the NHS”.
Chief Executive of Cornwall Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, Debbie Richards, told us: “I am proud be the Chief Executive of Cornwall Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, providing mental health services across Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly. I am particularly proud because my mother began her nurse training in one of our community hospitals, aged 16. Not only did she demonstrate to me that the NHS is more than a lifelong commitment, it is also, for a number of us, a family commitment.
“I am most grateful to my mother, and her sisters, who also began their nursing careers in Cornwall. I am grateful for their inspiration, their pride in nursing and, most importantly, for instilling a value in me of the NHS and the public service that we provide”.
Steve Williamson, Chief Executive of the Royal Cornwall Hospitals’ NHS Trust, commented: “Throughout the journey and development of services at the Royal Cornwall, St Michael’s and West Cornwall hospitals, I think the thing that strikes me the most is how incredibly passionate all of our colleagues are, have been and continue to be.
“I think what we are really celebrating here, on the 75th anniversary, is our amazing colleagues across the NHS who work now and who have worked for us previously. They are really the heart of everything we do, and it is a privilege to be able to say happy 75th to everybody who works in Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust now, to colleagues who have worked previously, and to all of our colleagues across the wider NHS”.