Registered Nurse Gloria Petrie (pictured on right) always wanted to be a nurse since the age of four, when she broke her arm and spent three weeks in Waikato Hospital. She still remembers that hospital stay and the fantastic care she received.
After taking every health-related paper at school, she moved quickly into studying, completing the Wintec three year nursing degree. As a new grad, Petrie started work at Bupa Eventhorpe Care Home in Hamilton East, where she has been for the past 14 years.
“Aged care was never my thing. I thought I was going to go into surgical or children’s care. But I got a job here and fell in love with it,” said Petrie.
She recalls a time where a resident, who was gender diverse, had no family to call and was passing away. Petrie said she felt compelled to stay with the resident long after her shift had finished.
“I remember staying on for hours, just holding the resident’s hand. We both spoke about the challenges faced when growing up, that was hard.”
The 36-year old says she loves how the smallest interactions or gestures can have such a positive impact on residents. The Hamiltonian is also determined to change the perception of aged care with the young nursing students who come through her care home.
“When I was a student, I thought aged care would be boring. I didn’t realise how much is involved, you’re the nurse, and you’re making the decisions. I tell the students you’ll get out what you put in.”
Becoming the Unit Coordinator a year ago has meant Petrie has now stepped up again into the temporary Clinical Manager role. She relishes the opportunity to teach others and care for residents.