Permanent Shift Change: Nurse’s Last Report!

January 14, 2015…  

I’ve been nursing a long time – 40 years this year! I can’t believe this, as I’m saying it! I graduated from St. Clare’s School of Nursing in 1975, and have thoroughly enjoyed my years as a registered nurse (RN).

Dianne Boland at her post on 7 West, St. Clare’s Hospital

Dianne Boland at her post on 7 West, St. Clare’s Hospital

I started out working at St. Clare’s Mercy Hospital on 6 East (surgery), and then moved to St. Patrick’s Mercy Home, where I worked part-time for 10 years when my children were small. I enjoyed working and socializing with the senior residents – I even danced with some of them!

I went to Palliative Care from there, when it was located here at St. Clare’s. A most rewarding – but challenging – job at times. I worked there for seven years… I loved it and learned a lot.

Finally, I took a permanent full-time position here on 7 West, the Medicine Floor, where I’m completing my final working shifts! I’ve been here since 1998 –17 years! It’s the great staff here that has helped to keep me here.

7 West team. Front l-r: Linda Lyons, Dianne, Beverly Downey, Alicia Hogan. Back: Cathy Holwell, Cathy Power, Lori McDonald, Rhonda Legge, Michelle Burton, Eileen Fahey

7 West team. Front (l-r): Linda Lyons, Dianne, Beverly Downey, Alicia Hogan. Back: Cathy Holwell, Cathy Power, Lori McDonald, Rhonda Legge, Michelle Burton, Eileen Fahey

Throughout my career, I have worked with a lot of great and interesting people. And during that time, I have come to know a few things – things I want to pass on to the younger nurses who are just starting their careers:

  • Be pleasant and positive.
  • Have patience.
  • Work hard and treat your patients, family members and co-workers with respect.
  • Come to work with a smile. It does wonders for you – and most importantly, you get positive feedback from your patients. They notice!
Finger on the pulse!

Finger on the pulse!

Working as a nurse certainly has its challenges. There’s always more education along the way, and the need to keep up with new policies and procedures. Going from team nursing to our new Acute Model of Nursing Care is an example.

7 West was the first area to implement this change, which basically means that individual nurses take more responsibility for their own patients. There are times we still need teamwork to complete tasks here on 7 West – but the new model helps us to be more accountable to those we care for.

I do believe in being responsible for your own patients. Patient care is what drew me to nursing in the first place – and that’s one thing that hasn’t changed in 40 years!

And some things have come full circle! I started out wearing a white uniform, as all nurses did back then. Now we’re back to white, with black pants, of course. There’s something nice about that, and a lot of patients have commented on how much they like it – being able to distinguish RNs from other professional health care workers.

I am so excited to finally retire on February 28, 2015.

Dianne Boland, RN and her twin sister Anne Brophy, RN – as they prepare to retire

Dianne Boland, RN and her twin sister Anne Brophy, RN – as they prepare to retire

And what makes it ‘doubly’ rewarding is that my twin sister Anne Brophy, also a nurse, is retiring too! We went through nursing school together, graduated together – and now we are retiring together.

Between us, we’ve given 80 years of combined service to health care!

Anne’s looking forward to this new chapter in her life, too, especially to spending more time with her four grandchildren – but finds it hard to believe it’s time for retirement after all these years. Like me, she graduated from St. Clare’s School of Nursing and began her career at St. Clare’s. At one point, she left the city environment, working at a clinic in Ferryland where she says: “I was a secretary, pharmacist and RN all in one!”

In the mid-90s, she headed to Eastern Health’s long-term care program – and stayed. She’ll retire from the new long-term care facility in St. John’s the same day I leave St. Clare’s!

Anne has seen a lot of changes and challenges in long-term care over the years. Being in charge of nursing units has been a great learning experience for her.

Although my sister and I worked in different areas for most of our careers, we were both fortunate to work with those we enjoyed and respected.

Anne says: “I will miss the great staff who have treated our residents as though they were their own families, crying and laughing with them as well as singing and dancing! I’ve met such a variety of residents over the years – and it has been a great joy.”

To sum up, I have so much to look forward to – spending time with my family and my two grandchildren. I’m so grateful to have had their support these past years and fortunate to have been healthy enough to enjoy my nursing career. Shift work isn’t always easy.

But now, I’m so looking forward to charting the next ‘extended shift’ of my life…

Dianne with colleague, Alicia Hogan

Dianne with colleague, Alicia Hogan

…and getting ready to sign out for the last time!

Dianne Boland, RN.

This story was written by Dianne Boland, an acute care nurse at St. Clare’s Mercy Hospital in St. John’s.


43 responses to “Permanent Shift Change: Nurse’s Last Report!

  1. Congratulations Girls on a well deserved retirement.You have to be a special kind of person to be a good nurse and you both have all the qualities that made you just that.All the best to you both.

  2. Congratulations Dianne & Ann on your retirement ,I had pleasure of having you both over the years while i was in hospital , you both are two caring nurses and i sure you both will be missed by your co – workers .I am wishing you both all the best enjoy your retirememt .

  3. congratulations Dianne and Anne on your retirement. You both are inspirations!!! best of luck for your retirement years!! 80 wonderful years of service!!!

  4. Hey there Dianne, congratulations to you and Anne. I must say I also have the previlidge of working with you at St.Patricks Mercy Home. you are a great nurse. All the best to you both as you start another wonderful journey. Enjoy! From: Loretta Collier Ottawa, Ontario

  5. What a lovely story, Diane! To you and your sister, congratulations on your upcoming retirement, dear ladies. Eighty years of giving yourself to your patients – there’s no price that can be put on that. Much gratitude to you special people and all the caring nurses in our health care system. Blessings and good health to you always.
    Linda at Beautiful Ideas

  6. Congratulations Dianne & Anne on your retirement. Well done! I hope you both enjoy your retirement and all the best to you both.

  7. Thank you!!! You are angels without wings as my Mom called all the wonderful staff at Bonnews Lodge!! Enjoy your retirements!!

  8. I had the privelege of having Dianne as the nurse I was assigned to for mentorship during nursing school on 7W. She always had a smile on her face and was pleasant to the staff and patients alike. She certainly was a great role model….best wishes for a happy retirement, Dianne! You are most deserving of it:)

  9. Congrats on your retirement Diane!….St.Clares is going to miss you!…You are a wonderful ,caring,pleasant professional Registered Nurse!..All the best!

  10. Congratulations to you both on your Retirement!! I had the pleasure of working with Anne on many occasions; What a great nurse-always so pleasant & always treated the residents so well. Eastern Health will surely be losing two super nurses! You two will surely be missed` All the Best in your retirement-you so deserve it!!

  11. WHat a beautiful story!! . Congratulations to both of you on your retirement .The Nursing Profession was privileged to have nurses like you . I love the advice you have given to younger nurses . God bless you and I wish you both a happy and healthy retirement.

  12. Thank you both for your years of great caring service~ Your patients will surely miss you as will your co-workers . Hope your retirement is long healthy & happy

  13. Congratulations Diane & Anne on your Retirement!! Im sure you both will be missed, All the Best in your retirement.

  14. Anne and Dianne Sullivan, I remember you when I used to go to Calvert with Philomena Cahill. We stayed at Jessie Powers house in Calvert. My Name is Noella Ryan Dobbin. Congratulations girls.

  15. Congrats Dianne on your 40 years of service and retirement we both remember your years at St. Patrick’s Mercy Home

  16. Congratulations to you both! I can remember you both when I also worked there with houskeeping, CSR and Switchboard for 27 years. Enjoy your time with your families!

  17. Congratulations Girls ! Jobs well done I’d say & with beautiful personalities to go along w/ great service !

  18. I’ve had the pleasure of working with you both at St. Clare’s,early in my own nursing career.There are no better,more caring,professional,or funny nurses anywhere.Such a credit to our profession.Enjoy many years of health and happiness in your retirements.

  19. Congrats! after 40 years of service you girls deserve to have a healthy & happy retirement, all the best Anne & Dianne

  20. Beautiful ! Congratulations on a successful career and best wishes for a continued happy & healthy retirement.

  21. Congratulations to two wonderful ladies for a job well done. Enjoy this new chapter in your life to the fulliest!!

  22. Love this story, Diane .. And I am so very privileged to have worked with you . Your patients & co-workers will miss that beautiful smile & positive attitude .. And, yes, if we have our health , we have everything. You have so much to look forward tooo with your special family & friends .. Congrats to you & Anne … 😊🎊

  23. Congratulations on your retirement ! Thanks Anne for your wonderful care to my Mom at Hoyles. God Bless you both! Rita Locke

  24. Congratulations to you & your sister , I loved reading your story, very heartwarming , a well deserved retirement for you both.

  25. Congratulations to both of you wonderful, caring, nurses.Your retirement will certainly be a huge loss for Eastern Health and certainly the Public, too .Happy Retirement Dianne and Ann!

  26. Diane Congratulations on your retirement Loved working with you on Palliative Care Remember the night a patient asked us to sing The Galway Shawl.. We spent half the night finding all of the words and he died while you and I were singing the last verse. You are my perfect example of a true loving caring nurse. Love Cathy Healy

  27. Congrat to you both…A you served your time doing something you both loved doing so well now it’s time to enjoy your lives outside the work place and spending time with the grand kids and family..Enjoy your retirement…..

  28. Dianne &Anne:
    Congratulations to both of you on your retirement. I remember the day you both came into training. You were wearing identical mauve dresses and looked so sweet. You both still are the sweetest ever. Enjoy your new lives to the fullest. Dianne, Thank you for the lovely letter. Put a lump in my throat.
    Best wishes to you both!

  29. Congratulations Anne and Dianne on your retirement and wonderful service to so many who were so fortunate to have you as their nurse, I can only say that any one who had came across your service were very blessed to have either of you looking out for them and their best interests.. May God Bless You Both today and always, and Thank You Both for being there for all of us… HUGS

  30. Diane, beautiful words and great advice to the younger nurses entering the profession. You are truly an inspiration and fine example of a caring, compassionate and knowledgeable nurse. Having worked with you in my Discharge Planning role and as busy as you were on 7W, you always found the time to talk to me in a very respectful manner about the patients or just have a friendly chat. I will miss you dearly on 7W. You truly deserve a happy retirement and I wish both you and your twin sister all the best in the years to come. Looking forward to your night out to celebrate!!

  31. ann was one of the nicest people i ever worked with, always had a smile on her face, congrats to you both

  32. Excellent story and congratulations to both Dianne and Anne. One of our family highlights of many years ago were the Sunday drives to Calvert to visit with the Sullivan family. They were all so nice and welcoming. Best wishes.

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