New chapter for longest-serving nurse

Royal Perth Hospital’s Shenton Park campus’ longest serving employee Maureen Blore. d426269
Royal Perth Hospital’s Shenton Park campus’ longest serving employee Maureen Blore. d426269

After starting her career at Shenton Park a little unconventionally more than 45-years ago, Ms Blore will celebrate an end to an era as it closes next month.

‘Years ago, they started advertising for nursing cadets at Royal Perth Hospital,’ she said.

‘So I went for an interview and, of course, being only 15, you had to go with your parents so I was with my mum.

‘A girl came out from the interview and said they’ve change their minds ” they think 15 is too young to be on the wards and to see the gory side of life.

‘So I get up to go for my interview and they ask me how old I am and my mother gives them my brother’s birth date, which made me 16 and that’s how I started.’

Ms Blore spent the first six months of her employment in the psychiatric ward at RPH, but found her true calling when she joined the Shenton Park spinal cord unit in 1969. She is well-known by many of the spinal unit patients, having worked with some for more than 40 years.

‘There is a young lassie I’ve nursed since she had her accident when she was two years old and she’s a mum now,’ Ms Blore said.

‘It’s like family, so when they come into hospital they feel secure seeing a familiar face and it’s not just mine.’

While patients will continue to see Ms Blore’s familiar face around Fiona Stanley Hospital, where Shenton Park services are relocating to, they can also expect a range of new state-of-the-art treatment facilities.

‘There have been many changes over the years with small inventions like the aeroplane pillow, which improves pressure care management for spinal patients,’ she said.

‘I have also seen significant developments to multidisciplinary patient care, which has reduced hospital stays from an average of 12 months down to about six months.

‘Moving to Fiona Stanley Hospital is a great opportunity as it is a brilliant environment for rehabilitation.

‘There is plenty of space for treating patients.’