"I'm so proud to make a difference" - Midwife Carol reflects on her 47-year career for NHS 75 | Latest Maternity news

"I'm so proud to make a difference" - Midwife Carol reflects on her 47-year career for NHS 75

Carol Adcock, Midwife

A midwife who has spent 47 years working in the NHS says she would "do it all over again" if she had the chance, as she reflected on her career as we mark the NHS' 75th anniversary.

Carol Adcock, 65, currently works as a midwife in Fetal Medicine at Royal Derby Hospital, and has known from an early age that she wanted to work in healthcare in some way:

"I've always wanted to be a nurse for as long as I can remember. I had dolls when I was younger and remember making them play hospitals, so it was clear what I was going to go on to do even then!"

Although she is now working as a midwife, Carol's career began in nursing until she had her first experience of midwifery. Carol at Royal Derby Hospital

She explained: "I left school in 1974 and did a pre-nursing course as a student and during the holidays, worked as a cadet at the DRI". Carol started her nurse training in 1976 & once qualified she worked in the operating theatres for a year.

"At that point, theatres weren't specialised, so we would get to work across all of the different specialities from trauma and orthopaedics to general surgery, so I got to experience a lot of different things and acquired a lot of knowledge."

Carol then worked on a surgical ward as a staff nurse before deciding to gain a further qualification, this time in midwifery. She undertook her training and spent 18 months working at Queen's Medical Centre in Nottingham, before securing a position which she cherished as a Community Midwife on the border of Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire.

She said: "I absolutely loved my time working in the community, helping families with home births, pre- and post-natal classes and spending time with some wonderful GP colleagues. It really was such a fulfilling role."

It wasn't long, however, before Carol was seeking another new challenge. In 1993, she moved back to Derby and alongside a consultant colleague, established the Fetal Medicine Department at the Royal Derby Hospital & incorporated the Trisomy screening programme which identified women with an increased risk of a baby with Down's Syndrome. This screening has evolved to include Edwards Syndrome & Patau's syndrome for women.

Carol continued: "The department started off as just one consultant and myself and over the years, the team and our footprint in the hospital has grown and we now have a team of 6 consultant's &  6 midwives  working with us.

"I'm really proud to have established this service; this is my baby!"

Since the early 1990s, Carol has helped to establish the unit and provided counselling training to colleagues about how to deal with some of the more challenging situations they may face.

Carol speaks with BBC Radio Derby

Reflecting on all she has achieved in her career, Carol said there is an overriding feeling of pride and has been humbled to work alongside and in collaboration with such amazing colleagues over the past five decades.

She said: "It's always been a team approach and it's not all about me at all. It's so humbling to look back and know you've helped to make a difference to people at a time when they needed it most.

"I'm proud of what I've been able to achieve and of the service we can now offer to our patients. Things have changed a lot in the NHS but the biggest thing that remains key is good, effective communication to make sure we're making a difference to the lives of our patients and their families."

Despite retiring at Christmas last year, Carol has returned to work bank shifts such is her love for the role.

She added: "Everyone here is like a second family to me, and we all know each other so well. I've absolutely loved every minute of my career and if I had my time over, I'd do it all again!"

We have placed cookies on your computer to help make this website better. You can at any time read our cookie policy. Otherwise, we will assume that you're OK to continue.

Please choose a setting: