Lynn McCormack

Lynn McCormack has been a Team Leader at the Norseman Contact Centre for NHS 24 in South Queensferry for the past five years and has worked in the NHS for 30 years.

“. . . nursing isn't just about making a patient feel better, it's also about making sure relatives are included too.”

She has worked across a wide variety of specialist areas from oncology, neurology and critical care that she says helped to hone her skills. Her work at the Western General Hospital also gave her the expert knowledge of Forth Valley, Fife, Tayside and Lothian she needs for her work at NHS 24.

But Lynn says that working at NHS 24 was one of the best decisions she ever made: "At NHS 24, no shift is ever the same. The teamwork involved is more apparent, as well. Everyone has a part to play from the pharmacist to the GPs and teams in accident and emergency. But most of all, I would say it is the people I work with who really make it all worthwhile, although I am also glad that I am not on my feet all day."

Lynn, who lives in Edinburgh, says: "NHS 24 is a different field of nursing. It is challenging and also very enjoyable. You receive a high volume of calls and have to make decisions based on the questions you ask and the answers you receive. You are able to develop your questioning and listening techniques as you don't have the opportunity to visually assess your patient.

"We have to give people space to talk, especially those with mental health problems. Some people don't want to go to their GP because they lack confidence or are embarrassed to discuss their symptoms."

Lynn originally entered nursing because she finds the human body fascinating. "It's a wonderful machine," she says. "However, nursing isn't just about making a patient feel better, it's also about making sure relatives are included too. You have to keep them as up-to-date as you can without infringing patient confidentiality."

She said joining NHS 24 was a challenge initially in terms of adjusting to new ways of working.

"I had spent the previous 12 years in oncology and was in a comfort zone. The move to NHS 24 and its telephone triage system was unique but also very unfamiliar. It was odd to be a learner again, but it's great to learn new skills. You can then use your experience to help others who are starting work at NHS 24."

Lynn is passionate about the help and assistance offered by NHS 24 to patients of all ages and in all areas of Scotland. She says: "We've never been complacent and always listen to feedback. We want to make things better so the service is constantly evolving and improving. At the end of the day, we're not just service providers, we're also service users."


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