Spotlight on our Nurse Manager, Janet Oakey

Our nurses often receive praise for their professionalism and compassion. They are the lynchpin of Campden Home Nursing and without them we would not be able to provide our invaluable end of life care to the people of Chipping Campden and the surrounding area. We are so grateful to our nursing team for everything they do – which often includes going well above and beyond the call of duty.

We thought you’d like to know more about the powerhouse at the centre of Campden Home Nursing, so we’ll start by introducing you to our Nurse Manager, Janet Oakey.

Janet joined Campden Home Nursing last year, having worked for a similar local charity. Originally, Janet applied for bank work here, but was snapped up by us, as it was clear she had all the skills and experience needed for the job.

She trained in 1988 at the Royal United Hospital in Bath, followed by a two year placement at Warwick Hospital on the Haematology Ward. It was here that Janet developed a passion for palliative care.

Janet said: “The aim of palliative care is to help our patients have good quality of life for the time they have left.  I love my job – It’s very rewarding because I know our work makes a difference. We understand what patients and families are going through and have the practical skills and knowledge to guide them through some very difficult times.”

“We can tell them what’s normal, and aim to support, rather than take over! Patients and their families can rely on us to provide relaxed but capable care.”

Janet is responsible for directing, organising and supervising the work of our nursing staff, who are all registered nurses. She co-ordinates nursing efforts to ensure that effective patient care is being provided and that quality standards are met.

Janet’s duties include evaluating the performance of her team, providing feedback and mentoring, developing education programs, contributing to staff professional development, interviewing and hiring nurses.

A typical day for Janet starts at around 7am when she receives a handover from the night sits and actions anything that needs addressing.  Later that day, she updates Helen and Dawn in the office, letting them know how many people are using the nursing services and the status of each patient. She will check the rotas to see who is working that day and makes sure there is enough cover in place for the coming week, including the evening shift and night sits.

Janet also manages her own case load, clocking up hundreds of miles in the car.

Early evening, she will be communicating with the nurses starting the night sits and is always on call throughout the night in case emergency help is needed.

Part of Janet’s job also involves visiting GP’s within the geographical area we serve, as well as local community groups and schools, to tell them about the charity services we provide.

Janet said: “People often ask how I cope with the sadness of my job. Obviously, it can be very difficult sometimes, and I have developed my own coping strategies. You develop a certain resilience and as professionals we’ve all received training on how to handle the emotional challenges of providing end of life care.

“The positive thing about my job is that I meet many wonderful people and witness real love and between family members which is really uplifting. As a species, humans are capable of great empathy and compassion and that restores my faith in human nature.”

Janet finished: “I have a great team of nurses who all respect each other and bring a mixed skillset to the team. We’re all united in our love of palliative care.”

To Janet and all of our nurses, we thank you from the bottom of our heart.