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UHNM nursing assistant described as an ‘angel’ receives Hero award

A Nursing Assistant from University Hospitals of North Midlands has received a hero award in recognition for her outstanding care she provided towards a patient.

Sue Caddick, 64, from Biddulph Moor was diagnosed with incurable lung cancer in November 2021 which spread to her breast. After contracting an infection and facing the prospect of a mastectomy, Sue was under the care of Ward 126 at Royal Stoke Hospital and UHNM Nursing Assistant, Jackie Salih.

Initially finding her diagnosis difficult to come to terms with, Sue found Jackie to be an inspirational guidance to her and completely changed her mindset, allowing her to stay positive and make decisions on the treatment route she wanted to take, which was a mastectomy.

Sue, who is retired, said: “I felt so low and terrified when I was in hospital, but Jackie helped me so much and I will never forget the help she gave me. What is so lovely about Jackie is that she doesn’t even know what it is that she does.

“I told Jackie in hospital, she is an angel shinning down on me. For the time she took to talk to me, for the care she gave to me and for giving me all the strength I needed, she is wonderful.”

Paul Caddick, Sue’s husband of 46 years said: “When Sue was told that she had cancer there were lots of things she wouldn’t talk to me about or the family. I couldn’t get her to open up, but Jackie did. She was a different person once she had met Jackie.

“She was truly amazing and really helped us. It is remarkable.”

Jackie who has worked at UHNM for 14 years said: “When I met Sue she was in a really low place and with my support and encouragement she was able to go through with her treatment and operations.  I had breast cancer in 2021 and had amazing support from family and close friends and support from my management and the team on Ward 126, so I personally know how much support is needed and how much it can help someone who is going through a difficult time.

“I feel proud to receive this award and I am proud of Sue and that the impact of what I have gone through has helped somebody else and also their family.”

Tracy Bullock, Chief Executive said: “It was a really special moment to meet Sue and her husband Paul to hear how truly grateful they are for the care they have received.  Jackie thoroughly deserves the recognition of this award for the impact she has made in providing outstanding care to Sue.”

Sue will continue with her treatment within the next month and is hopeful for the future.

She added: “Everyone at the hospital has been so respectful and thoughtful towards me and my family. It really is a fantastic hospital.”

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