Careers

Stories from our Nurses

2024/07/02

Toh Zheng An (Staff Nurse, Critical Care)

​My career aspirations were greatly influenced by my
mother's cancer diagnosis. During her hospital visits, I was inspired by the dedication and expertise of the nurses. Their pivotal role in times of vulnerability ignited my interest in nursing.


I was awarded a Nursing scholarship, which motivated me to excel academically and clinically to provide the best care for patients. I chose NUH for its strong focus on research, aligning with my interests. The affiliation with NUS also facilitated a smooth transition from academics to the clinical area, where I joined the Graduate Nurse Residency Programme (GNRP) upon graduation.


Currently, I practise in the Medical Intensive Care Unit (MICU), caring for critically ill parents who require haemodynamic or ventilatory support. 

I am also involved in research projects in collaboration with NUS, focusing on nursing education and healthcare technology. One project explores the use of AI chatbots for patients with dementia, and another aims to improve teaching pedagogy in the GNRP.

I had the opportunity to attend the Norway Health Tech Convention, gaining insight into the use of technology, including AI, in healthcare. This experience provided an exciting glimpse into future research and innovations that could enhance patient outcomes. I look forward to collaborating with NUH healthcare professionals to contribute to patient-centred, evidence-based research that improves the quality of patient care.

 

A key belief I hold is: "You can't always cure, but you can always care." And importantly, you can't pour from an empty cup—I strongly believe that self-care is important in preparing us to give and serve the patient community.

 

 Adeline Lie (Nurse Manager, Surgery)

​My interest in becoming a nurse began in my teens during my grandmother's hospital visits. My first clinical attachment at NUH as a student nurse left a lasting impression due to the nurturing environment, structure and rigor provided by the hospital. Consequently, NUH was my first choice when I applied for a scholarship and I was heartened to be awarded thereafter.

 

Following graduation, the GNRP at NUH greatly helped my transition from a student nurse to a professional nurse. The Nursing leaders at NUH have been supportive in providing opportunities for exposure and reframing my understanding of the nursing profession. Their constant support and check-ins ensured I had the necessary assistance.

Having been in nursing since my graduation, I chose to continue in this profession because of the growth opportunities NUH has provided. In my role as a Nurse Manager, I'm actively involved in projects beyond my ward duties. Currently, I am currently the co-chair of NUH's multi-disciplinary workgroup and a member of the NUHS cluster falls workgroup. I am particularly excited about being involved in projects which present a chance to redefine nursing in terms of skill enhancement and care delivery.

A highlight of my nursing career was receiving the MOH Nurses Merit Award in 2022. This award has inspired me to continue learning from my peers and seniors, as I develop professionally and aim to elevate the nursing field.

Nursing is certainly not a walk in the park, but I remain committed to the profession, as there are many individuals who still need advocacy and care.

 

 Tan Min Yuan (Nurse Clinician, Medicine)

As a Nurse Clinician (Advanced Practice Nurse), my role extends beyond ward-based clinical duties. I also manage patients with cognitive impairment in the outpatient setting, mentor junior nurses and lead workgroups to enhance our current care and develop future nursing strategies.


My journey into nursing was inspired by a personal experience. At 12 years old, I underwent corrective surgery for scoliosis. While surgeons performed the operation, it was the nurses who nursed me back to health. They encouraged my first steps post-operation and comforted me when I felt my worst. Their reassuring presence during that difficult time inspired me to pursue nursing.


From the outset, I wanted to be a Nurse Clinician and an Advanced Practice Nurse.

As part of staff development, NUH has provided me with many opportunities to hone my skills and broaden my exposure across various settings and acuity levels. I have been fortunate to meet many inspiring individuals who became my role models along my journey. 

Over the last 13 years, there have been many proud moments. These range from witnessing a bedbound patient walk out of the ward at discharge, to seeing a patient's son choose nursing after experiencing the care we provided for his mother. Even small expressions of appreciation from patients, caregivers or other healthcare professionals have been fulfilling.

I remember the times when challenging family situations would bring me to tears. Now, I stand confidently with our nurses to manage such situations. What brings me the most joy is witnessing our nurses' growth in passion, knowledge and confidence.

The possibilities in healthcare are limitless. The future of nursing and what we can achieve as a team is truly exhilarating.

 

 Ellene Lim (Senior Staff Nurse, Cardiology)

During my university days, I had clinical attachments at NUH. As a student nurse, I was inspired by the dynamic, empowered, and strong-willed nature of NUH nurses, which sparked my interest in nursing. Learning that NUH is the only hospital that offers GNRP further fueled my interest to join the hospital.


My aspiration is to become a Nurse Researcher. I am fascinated by the prospect of generating novel ideas at the bedside and staying abreast of clinical knowledge.


To achieve this, I have focused on refining my skills in critical care nursing while facilitating evidence-based nursing research projects. At National University Heart Centre, Singapore (NUHCS), I serve as the chairperson of our evidence-based nursing workgroup, Cardiovascular Evidence-based Nursing Collective (CENC).  

Currently, I work in the Coronary Care Unit (CCU), caring for patients with chronic or acute heart conditions. The job can be demanding as these patients are critically ill and require timely interventions. Breaking bad news to family members remains a challenging aspect of my role. However, I have learnt the importance of supporting families through their grief, respecting their process and time — a skill I continue to develop. 

In our ward, there were patient complaints on back pain and urinary discomfort after extended bedrest post cardiac angiographic procedures. Hence, we initiated a project titled "Early Ambulation Post Coronary Angiographic Procedures" which examines the effect of early ambulation on patients.  Given its promising results, it is being introduced as a standard practice in the rest of the Hospital. 

 

To my juniors colleagues, I offer this advice:  
"Embrace your challenges! Nursing can be demanding, but each challenge is an opportunity for growth. Every obstacle you overcome will forge you into a stronger and more resilient nurse."

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