Today marks International Nurses Day, a day celebrated in recognition of nurses around the world who offer invaluable contributions to our healthcare sector. Optimise Healthcare Group is celebrating Lauren Campbell and Sarah Mills, two nurses that are a valued part of our medical team.
Our managing director, Lauren Campbell, completed a degree in mental health nursing and has since worked in the mental health sector for over a decade. Lauren’s main goal is to provide an exceptional level of care to help each patient on their road to complete recovery.
Sarah Mills, mental health nurse and registered manager at Optimise, aims at breaking the stigma surrounding mental health, providing support for those patients who require it. After graduating with a degree in mental health nursing, Sarah worked in an adult acute psychiatric ward, putting into practice her compassionate nature and desire to give patients the best standard of care.
Let’s find out more about Lauren and Sarah as they share their experiences of what it is like to be a nurse.
Q. What inspired you to become a nurse?
Sarah Mills - “For me, becoming a nurse was never an ambition of mine throughout my childhood and during my school years. Nursing was always a career I had admired but I never truly understood the role until I had my daughter at 19 years old.
“My daughter being born gave me some perspective as I had learnt firsthand how much support and reassurance nurses provide, not only during childbirth but in all aspects of nursing. This kickstarted my desire to pursue this as a career.
“Mental health was always a topic of interest to me and it made perfect sense to follow a career path that allowed me to empathise with people and the struggles they face. My ultimate goal, both personally and professionally, is to reduce the stigma that surrounds mental health, including negative attitudes toward those struggling with their mental health and also internalised shame that people may have due to their own conditions.
“Through education, I recognise my duty of care to help prevent and protect patients and contribute to change. By doing so I can educate others in my community to have a better understanding of mental illness and recognise their own health needs".
Q. If you could give a piece of advice to those considering going into nursing what would you say?
Lauren Campbell - "While nursing is a challenging and incredibly rewarding profession, it is an ever-changing role with always something new to learn and experience. A nurse that asks a lot of questions and continues to expand their knowledge will continue to provide good quality care to patients, therefore one of the key pieces of advice I would give is to keep learning and observe as much as possible from your peers and those above you. Besides learning from your colleagues, be confident in your ability to support them as well as making your own decisions.
"Secondly, expect the unexpected. As a nurse, you must be prepared for any scenario and the day you think you know everything is the day you should retire!
"Today, as the Managing Director of Optimise Healthcare Group, my background as a mental health nurse gives me a deeper understanding of how complicated and challenging healthcare can be. My role now is to provide these people with first-class healthcare should they require it".
Q. Is there a piece of advice you received that stayed with you throughout your career?
Lauren Campbell - "Be confident in your abilities - you know more than you think!"
Q. What does International Nurses Day mean to you?
Sarah Mills - "International Nurses Day is a day of reflection and celebration, but, for me, it is a day to acknowledge my personal achievements and how far I have come in my career so far.
"Particularly since the height of the pandemic, and as nurses have played such a vital role in supporting people’s physical, mental and emotional health, the role of a nurse has been validated more than ever. It feels both special and important for people to stop, pause and reflect on how nurses may have impacted their own lives for the better.
"Nurses may have supported a loved one through some of their darkest times, worked in partnership with a family to give a patient the best level of care and been there to provide emotional support for anyone who needs it.
"Despite working through challenging times, and more recently sacrificing home life during the pandemic, nurses continue to go above and beyond to deliver highly-skilled, expert care to patients every day".