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From emergency nursing to collections

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16th October, 2023

Lee Wakeman has been a registered nurse blood collector for NSW Health Pathology for just over a year and is enjoying a welcome change of pace from her previous role in emergency nursing.

After nine years in nurs­ing, Lee Wake­man brings a wealth of expe­ri­ence to her role at NSW Health Pathology’s col­lec­tion ser­vice at Newcastle’s John Hunter Hospital.

“I worked in men­tal health and foren­sics as a new grad for the first 18 months of my career, where I gained expe­ri­ence that would help me tran­si­tion into my new role as an emer­gency nurse,” she said.

“I worked in emer­gency for six years, gain­ing lots of expe­ri­ence and many skills over the years, like triage and resus­ci­ta­tion skills.”

Lee says her work at NSW Health Pathol­o­gy allows her to col­lab­o­rate with doc­tors, oth­er nurs­es, and staff with­in the laboratory.

“My role now is to be a team leader and col­lect and coor­di­nate the pathol­o­gy col­lec­tions through­out John Hunter Hos­pi­tal, includ­ing the pae­di­atric wards,” she explains.

“I real­ly enjoy work­ing in pathol­o­gy, the hours are great, work­ing autonomous­ly and with­in a team, meet­ing lots of new peo­ple, mak­ing new friend­ships and you get the oppor­tu­ni­ty to get to know the patients.”

Lee also keeps her clin­i­cal skills up to date by work­ing casu­al­ly in a Post Anaes­the­sia Care Unit (PACU), oth­er­wise known as the recov­ery unit, in a local pri­vate hospital.

“I love that you can work in so many dif­fer­ent areas with­in nurs­ing and there is so many oppor­tu­ni­ties to learn and progress.”

Lee enjoys help­ing peo­ple and mak­ing a dif­fer­ence in their lives, no mat­ter how big or small, dur­ing a time that is dif­fi­cult in theirs.

“It’s a very dynam­ic and chal­leng­ing field to work in. But even the bad times have helped me improve my prac­tices and made me a bet­ter nurse.

“I have also made some of the best friends of my life whilst work­ing as a nurse.

“Out­side of work I love to trav­el, go out for nice food and wine, see my friends and family.”

Lee says she’s still learn­ing new skills all the time and would rec­om­mend a career in collections.

Keen to find out more? Check out the careers page on our web­site.


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