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Waitrose thanks long-serving nurse but NHS doesn’t


A nurse who retired after more than 50 years in the health service did not get a word of thanks from the NHS but her efforts were recognised by her local supermarket, according to her family.

The story of the unnamed nurse was shared by her daughter on social media and has since gone viral with many commenting on the “disgusting” oversight.

In a post, that has been seen by thousands of people, Edwina Kitson described how her Mum spent “a nice final morning with her colleagues”.

However, she claimed the nurse, who was retiring after 54 years, did not get a proper thank you from the health service itself.

“My mum didn’t have a thank you from the NHS for her service – not even an acknowledgement,” she wrote.

But when the nurse popped into her local Waitrose supermarket in Wimborne, Dorset, on her way home and mentioned she was retiring to a member of staff she was surprised with a gift of thanks by the store.

“She briefly mentioned it was her last day in the NHS after 54 years to a worker after enquiring about something,” said Ms Kitson.

“In the short time it took her to do her shopping she was greeted at the door by the manager with roses, flowers, strawberries and cream – and thanked for her service to the NHS personally from the manager of Waitrose,” she said.

“This made my mum’s day. Shame on you NHS. Thank you Waitrose,” she added.

The story has so far attracted 369,000 “likes” or other reactions, including thousands of icons showing weeping, shocked or angry faces.

Scores of people have commented with many berating this “shocking treatment” and “really poor show from the NHS”.

Some responding to the post claimed the same had happened to them or their relatives who had worked in the NHS for a long time.

However, others said this was not typical and NHS organisations generally did thank long-serving staff.

“To be fair to the NHS, Waitrose staff probably aren’t as stretched with life-saving work,” said one of the many people who shared their thoughts. “But a gesture might have been nice [from the NHS].”


Readers' comments (4)

  • This is one of the reasons why I am not so enthusiastic anymore to do my job as a Nurse. We're just numbers and not human beings. I've been working for 14 years now in the UK as a foreign Nurse and I'm very sad to see patients suffering due to cost savings and too much bureaucracy in the NHS and in private care homes. The managers and employers don't even know the patients names. They just want to fill the beds and get paid by government and relatives. I was once got told off for requesting another portion of meal for my patient as he's still hungry. I nearly lost my job for this.

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  • michael stone

    I'd assumed - from the photo NT used - that Waitrose had given her wine.

    Anyway, well done to her: 54 years is a long innings, by anyone's standards.

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  • The NHS does not need to spend money but a personal handshake from the director of nursing when a long serving member of staff leaves would cost nothing- this does not happen in my trust despite pointing it out to relevant people. That speaks volumes for how the NHS cares for its staff. This would never happen in any of the services including the ambulance service??

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  • We do not live in a friendly democratic society, health care is capitalism at its best. If you burn out or retire, you are replaced with another human being. The governing bodies of UK healthcare are not interested in your welfare. Their interest lies in the banks and profit and less expenditure.

    This nurse has made a world of difference to many human beings and endured the processing of health care. Think of health care as an abattoir, you go in one end and if you survive you come out of the other. This lady must be one tough cookie! I take my hat off to her.

    Congratulations! You are amazing! Well done and if I had the power to give you the recognition that you deserve, I certainly would.

    Well done Waitrose. That's a kind gesture. I believe the NHS, NMC and the others... could learn a lesson from this. Unlikely; but they should.

    Peace out.

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