New nurse is shining example of compassion


A newly qualified nurse has been thanked for her kindness and compassion. 27-year-old Sophie Ragdale swapped studying sports for nursing when her father became terminally ill and was cared for by a palliative care team. She now works on the frail elderly assessment unit (FEAU) at Royal Stoke University Hospital. Janet Wisher, whose father John Salt was cared for on the ward, made a special journey back to the hospital to thank Sophie for the difference she made to them as a family.

Janet said: “Sophie treated my dad with kindness and compassion, ensuring a pain free and dignified end of life. She also cared for me – maybe more than she realised – and on what is a very busy ward she took the time to explain and involve me in everything that was happening. She was kind and patient and gave me tea and a shoulder to cry on. She also offered to stay with my dad so that he wouldn’t be alone when I needed to pop out. I didn’t ask her to do that, but somehow Sophie knew that it mattered. That was an ‘extra mile’ moment for me. Sophie is an excellent nurse and a credit to the profession. My father really did receive the very best care on FEAU. All of the staff on the ward, without exception, have been marvellous and we are so grateful to every one of them.”

Janet has presented Sophie with a UHNM Hero award on behalf of the rest of her family.

Sophie said: “From the first day that I worked on FEAU when I was training, I knew this is where I wanted to be. Everyone is so helpful and friendly and we all work together, so any award we get is really a result of a huge team effort. It’s so lovely to be recognised and to see Janet again. Earlier in life I was more sports-focussed and had never considered nursing, until I witnessed the amazing work of the people who cared for my dad. That was a life-changing moment and I’m so glad to be here doing what I’m doing.”