Celebrations as woman celebrates 30 years working at Thorpe Hall Hospice

Corinne MacKey joined hospice aged 27 – and has stayed working there ever since

By Stephen Briggs
Sunday, 15th May 2022, 6:00 am
Corinne Mackey
Corinne Mackey

A nurse who has cared for scores of patients at Peterborough’s Thorpe Hall Hospice has spoken of how special it is to be part of the team – and urged others to consider a career in nursing.

Corinne Mackey joined Sue Ryder at the age of 27 as a Nursing Assistant, in what was her second job after leaving school, and has stayed with the charity ever since delivering expert and compassionate care.

As she celebrates her caring career milestone, Corinne shares how special it is to be part of the team at the hospice.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

“This role is very unique. We look after people with a life limiting condition – whatever condition that might be – and we look after physical, emotional, social and spiritual needs. What we do is so holistic. And our care extends to patient’s families as well. It is the whole package.”

“I have never regretted making the move to work in palliative care with Sue Ryder – not for one minute. We go above and beyond for our patients and their families and I just love being able to make a difference.”

“I would absolutely recommend palliative care as a career. It has lasted me 30 years so far so it must be good!

While Corinne has been there for countless patients and families, she says Sue Ryder and her colleagues have been there for her too.

“It is hard to put a number on how many people I have helped care for, but there are times when I am out and about and people whose loved ones I have cared for will recognise me from way back when I first started. They say ‘you’re not still at Sue Ryder Thorpe Hall Hospice are you?’ and they can’t believe I am still here!”

“I have received so much support here at Sue Ryder over the years. You couldn’t do this job without it really. My colleagues and the management teams have always been really supportive. They really care for your wellbeing.”

As she celebrates the significant milestone, Corinne is keen to give a glimpse into what it is like to work in palliative care.

“I wish more people realised that people don’t come into a hospice to die. When people say this to me I tell them this is really not the case. A huge part of our work now is to support patients in getting their symptoms under control so they can go home again.

“Over the time I have worked in palliative care the message has really started to get out that we help people feel more comfortable so they can keep on living. But the more people who hear this the better.”

“So many people say to me it must be really sad to do what you do and I say it can be really sad, but it is also really rewarding. We can make a huge difference to our patients and we can make a huge difference to their family too. We help people become mothers, wives, daughters, sons, fathers, husbands, partners, siblings or grandchildren again when they might have been carers for some time and it is so rewarding to help make that possible.”