Nurse turns doctor after 25 years

A NEW ROLE: Angie Reeve who is changing career to become a doctor
A NEW ROLE: Angie Reeve who is changing career to become a doctor

A MEDICAL trainee says the experience she has working as a nurse for more than 25 years will only help her in her new career as a doctor.

After a career which started as a nurse at Hartlepool General Hospital in 1987, Angie Reeve has decided to switch careers and become a doctor.

It was thanks to the support of her husband Les and her 20-year-old daughter Amber that she felt ready to start retraining at the North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust.

Angie also praised the support she received from her colleagues.

Angie, who lives in Hartlepool, said: “I have always enjoyed working as a nurse and being in the NHS.

“I know it’s a bit unusual to have worked as a nurse for so long and then to retrain in something completely new, but after working with Mr Tabaqchali and the colorectal team as a surgical care practitioner it felt like a natural progression.”

Angie added: “Being a doctor involves many of the same skills I have learned as a nurse with added responsibilities, the chance to do a bit more for patients but still give that personal touch.

“I have learned so much in my time in nursing which will help me as a doctor.

“I am not afraid to broach difficult subjects with patients and their families such as end of life care.

“Often a touch of the hand or indeed a hug when they are upset can make all the difference. I feel I am able to speak to patients about complicated conditions in language they can understand and this definitely stems from my nursing background.”

Angie said she knew what she was getting into when she was thinking about training.

She added: “I knew how highly rated the teaching and overall support was at the trust, which is why I chose to come back for my foundation years and it has been the best decision for my future career. The team are outstanding and always go the extra mile to ensure we reach our full potential.”

Angie has nearly completed the foundation two (F2) stage of her training, which has seen her carry out work in areas including psychiatry, elderly care, paediatrics, general practice, gastroenterology and obstetrics and gynaecology.

She has been accepted onto the general practice training programme and is planning to stay local for this training and to subsequently work in the local area as a GP.

The trust has been commended for, and regularly receives glowing reports on, the quality of its training and the support given to doctors in training.