In The Spotlight – Carla Grzebien

Carla Grzebien, Senior Charge Nurse, Bo’ness Community Hospital

Tell us a little about your current job

I am Senior Charge Nurse in Ward 2 at Bo’ness Community Hospital. It is a lovely 16 -bedded specialist dementia unit. We have a fantastic garden, a sweet shop, a ‘hippodrome’ and we are in the middle of creating a living room. We also have a learning area to support the team with professional development. Being a nurse- led ward is great for the nursing team – they have so much skills and knowledge.

What shaped your decision to choose nursing as a career?

When my gran was dying at Stirling Royal infirmary I was 17 and at the moment she passed away a nurse placed a caring hand on my shoulder. I remember just how nice that felt and that I probably needed it that moment without even realising it. Since then I wanted to be able to reassure and comfort people in their time of need.

What do you think are your biggest challenges?

Having too many ideas and not enough funding for them. The nursing staff in Bo’ness have organised lots fundraising events and I don’t tell them often enough just how much I appreciate all their help. We have managed to buy two new TVs, our sweet shop is always full and we have managed to get a Moses basket for our therapy doll as well as a stroller. We also have very generous relatives too who keep the ward well stocked with treats.

Your foodie weakness?

Fresh cream cakes, chocolate, biscuits – in fact anything with sugar really!

The place you feel happiest?

At home with my family as we have a beautiful baby boy called Robbie who just turned one. He has amazing red hair and an infectious smile.

Your best holiday ever?

When I went to Fuerteventura with my best friend Lesley Ann and her Mum and Dad. It was my first holiday abroad and I loved it. Lesley Ann went in the sea no problem but I was too scared of all the fish so I just watched from the beach. We also got a glass of sangria for the first time and were slightly tipsy. My freckles came out and we got braids in our hair.

Your favourite TV series or book?

Game of Thrones – I watched it all on TV and then started reading the books. I am currently watching The Handmaids Tale and I have the books ready for when I finish that one too.

Burning ambition?

To learn as much as there is to know about dementia, dementia care and treatment.

If you could change one thing what would you do?

Provide free continuing care for those who need it and ensure that long term care homes are more than adequately staffed with people who are appropriately trained.

Where do you see yourself in five years time?

Working as a Clinical Nurse Manager.

If you had one wish what would it be?

To improve my baby brain!