We hear about Claire Kibble, a senior nurse practitioner with Your Healthcare, who has led with such purpose over her 40-year career that her fellow nurses can’t help but sing her praises (and plan elaborate surprises for her).
Not many people have friends willing to fake a department-wide survey for them, but Claire Kibble does. Coming to the end of her nursing career, Ms Kibble is currently a senior nurse practitioner for Your Healthcare’s IMPACT team. For nearly 40 years, she has worked with elderly people in hospitals and homes . Beyond that though, Ms Kibble has touched the lives of many nurses who have worked alongside her. Nurses like Kathryn Ridgers and Lauren Crump, fellow nurse practitioners on the IMPACT Team.
On realising the rapid approach of Ms Kibble’s retirement, Ms Ridgers and Ms Crump contacted Nursing Times and requested we write an article on Ms Kibble. Determined to keep the article a surprise, the two even disguised a set of interview questions as a survey, and made everyone on the IMPACT team complete it, so as not to raise suspicion while covertly acquiring information from Ms Kibble.
This kind of dedication is not accrued lightly, and not just anyone can garner it as Ms Kibble has . Through years of natural leadership, Ms Kibble has left inspired nurses and satisfied patients in her wake . Now, we are lucky to be afforded a full mosaic of Ms Kibble, pieced together not only from her own words, but also from her colleagues’ warm memories.
”I was keen to work with older people and people at the end of life so that they could stay in their homes”
According to Ms Kibble, she has always wanted to be a nurse. “I came from a family of six children with many caring responsibilities expected of me,” Ms Kibble notes in her ‘survey’ answers . “We lived in a Cornish village with an outside toilet and galvanized bath. The village was very rural and access to health care was poor. I remember a district nurse midwife who visited our home to support my mother through her phlebitis in her last pregnancy,” says Ms Kibble. “She was a prominent person in our lives.”
These early caring experiences and encounters with nursing motivated Ms Kibble to become a nurse herself.
After completing her training and working as a nurse for several years, Ms Kibble moved into elderly care. “I was keen to work with older people and people at the end of life so that they could stay in their homes,” says Ms Kibble. “So in 1997, I commenced working in the community as a staff nurse and eventually became a senior sister.”
On her years as a nurse in elderly care Ms Kibble states, “I’ve learned that when it comes to older people and end of life care, giving the right care and support at the right time in the right place is the most important thing.” Ms Kibble would argue that frequently the right place is the patient’s home. “I’ve experienced a lot positive feedback from patients and carers over the years. They speak highly of living and receiving care in their own homes.”
”She gives 100% dedication all the time”
More recently, Ms Kibble has found herself working for Your Healthcare, and has enjoyed the freedom it allows her to learn and develop. “I was really attracted to the training and development they offer,” she notes. Driven by this desire to learn and expand, Ms Kibble has just started a certificate in essential palliative care in her spare time, even though she is due to retire in a few months .
Ms Kibble’s tenderness towards her patients, dedication to giving the best care, and drive to constantly improve her practice have been sources of inspiration for the many nurses who have worked with her over the years.
According to Ms Ridgers and Ms Crump these are the aspects of Ms Kibble’s disposition that make her an exceptional nurse. “She gives 100% dedication all the time,” says Ms Ridgers. “Her dedication to nursing makes her so professional. She still has ambition and an urge to learn after all these years.”
”She always makes you feel at ease and empowered”
“She’s taught me to always be approachable,” Ms Crump agrees . “If and when you’re unsure of something or need to learn a new clinical skill, Claire is the person to go to. She always makes you feel at ease and empowered.” Ms Crump goes on to explain that Ms Kibble is part of the reason she’s working at Your Healthcare. “After spending a couple hours with Claire, I knew that the IMPACT team was where I wanted to go in the future.”
“She’s the perfect combination of the 6Cs,” says Ms Ridgers. Ms Crump laughs and agrees.
Even though she still retains a passion for nursing, Ms Kibble feels that retirement is necessary. “I want to spend more quality time with my family, my friends and my dog,” she explains.
However, Ms Kibble does leave new nurses with a piece of parting advice: “Show determination, build relationships with multi disciplinary teams, network, remain interested and above all listen. Look for opportunities and keep on learning.”