Meet Rachael Toney, Junior Sister Ward 18

Rachael Toney, Junior Sister Ward 18 What is your name and what do you do?

I am Rachael Toney, a Junior Sister and I work on the inpatient ward, ward 18 (formerly ward 15) caring for haematology and oncology patients aged 0-16. I have been part of this team for nearly nine years now, first starting when I was a newly qualified nurse. We are a large team of around 70 made up of nurses, chemotherapy nurses, ANP's, play workers, Clinical support workers and housekeepers. 

How would you describe a typical day/ shift?

On Ward 18, I can honestly say no day is the same and a typical shift is busy and can at times be challenging but never the less rewarding and I enjoy working on such a lovely ward with an amazing team around me!

The patients on our ward can be complex to look after and can become really poorly. They require a lot of input from various different teams such as doctors, dieticians, physios, OT's and many more. My job as a Junior sister is usually to co-ordinate the ward on a day to day basis making sure everything runs smoothly as well as supporting the other members of the team to ensure were giving the best care to the children and families.

What do the team enjoy most about their work?

I think we as a team will all agree that we love seeing our patients get better and become well enough to go home and eventually finish their treatment and become cancer free. It is such an honour to look after these children and be part of their journey. We experience the highs and the lows together and when we see them ring the end of treatment bell and walk out the door after such a challenging time it is amazing to see. I often bump into patients in the corridors that I have cared for over the years and they tell me all about what they are up to and what they're studying at school and it's so lovely to see. It makes all the hard parts of the job worthwhile.

What’s your favourite thing about working at BWC?

I enjoy working at BCH because everyone really goes above and beyond in what they do. It is lovely so work in an environment where everyone always has the best interests of the patients and families at heart. We really are a great team!

What achievement are you/ your team most proud of?

In 2018 we moved from Ward 15 in Parson’s House to our new Ward 18 in Waterfall House. It was a big move and a lot of people were involved in making everything run smoothly. It was a big adjustment not only for ourselves to get used to different surroundings but also for the patients and families at the time. I think we as a team did a great job of this and we settled in nicely over the next few weeks and months. I think Ward 18 remains a lovely environment despite a challenging last couple of years. 

It has been difficult to navigate around the various restrictions such a visiting, especially on a ward where the patients and families want nothing more than to be surrounded by loved ones. I think we as a team have done a great job in supporting them all throughout this time.

Not a lot of people know this but……

I used to play the Violin!