‘Just couldn’t stand by and watch’ - retired mental health nurse returns to help colleagues

Sue Clarkson is returning as a frontline member of staff for Norfolk and Suffolk Foundation Trust to

Sue Clarkson is returning as a frontline member of staff for Norfolk and Suffolk Foundation Trust to help during the coronavirus pandemic. Picture: Sue Clarkson - Credit: Archant

A retired mental health nurse has returned to the frontline to support her colleagues tackle the coronavirus.

Sue Clarkson, who retired last year after more than 40 years, said she “just couldn’t stand by and watch” and signed up to return to work at the Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust (NSFT).

The Norwich resident will be reunited with colleagues at Mary Chapman House in Norwich, to work as an assistant practitioner with the children, families and young people’s service for at least three months to help manage demand during the pandemic. As part of the role, she will likely be signposting and advising people over the phone and helping colleagues their case loads.

Read more: Pub launches new radio station to keep in touch with customersMrs Clarkson, who started her career as a mental health nurse aged 18, said: “The NHS is under immense pressure at the moment and staff across the board are working really hard. I found it horrible to just stand by and watch with all the talk of shortages on the news, so as soon as I received a letter inviting me back, I knew I had to do my bit to help.

Read more: WATCH: Nurse begins painting “health heroes” as thanks for efforts during pandemic“I am relieved that I am able to play my part as the NHS is in my blood. I’m looking forward to it, although it will also be a challenge for me.

“When I retired I said I’d write a book about being a psychiatric nurse since 1975. I’ve got to chapter four so far but think I’ll have to put the rest of it on hold until after the pandemic has ended. Who knows, it might even make its own chapter.”

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