General Porter, joined the Trust in 2003
What is your role?
I am a general porter at St George’s Hospital, where I move patients or equipment from place to place. This includes patients in beds from ward to ward, patients in wheelchairs for diagnostic imaging and bodies to the mortuary.
Risk assessment is an important factor in my job. When I am moving a patient in a bed I will look for things like drips and catheters because you don’t want to find those things are there when you are passing another bed in a corridor.
What does a typical working day look like?
Patients are our main focus and I transfer them all day long to and from all hospital wards and clinics. There is no specific area in the hospital I work – it all depends on which job is allocated to me and what the priority is.
The patients themselves vary from job to job too; young and old, I see them all! The fact that no working day is the same is what makes my job so enjoyable.
When I work out of the usual hours I still transfer patients, but transferring equipment or viewings in the mortuary, which is not the usual responsibility of a general porter, can be part of my job too.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
I really enjoy the contact I have with the patients as well as other hospital staff. I also like the caring aspect of the role; patients might be worried or confused and at least we can help them by bringing them to the right place at the right time.
Another fun aspect of the job is that because I wear a uniform, visitors often ask me for the way around the hospital and I am only too happy to help.
What level of patient contact do you have in your role?
I have daily contact with patients and help them throughout the day. I usually just have a chat with them -if they like-, but I sometimes also need to help the nurses to move them from bed to bed.
What other members of the healthcare team do you work with?
All! Nurses, doctors, radiologists, healthcare professionals, pharmacists – you name it.
What do you like about working for the Trust?
There are a lot of hard working people at St George’s University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and everyone does their bit to help. It is about being part of the team.
Why did you join the NHS?
I moved to the NHS after a 30-year career in the hotel industry. I felt that is was a good opportunity to transfer my skills of dealing with guests to dealing with patients in the NHS.