Tributes are being paid to student nurse Lucy Blackburn, who died after experiencing a suspected epileptic seizure while on a clinical placement.
Ms Blackburn, 20, was studying adult nursing at the University of Chester and had just started her second year.
“She was a wonderful student who would have gone on to be an amazing staff nurse”
She was found collapsed by colleagues on Tuesday 1 December towards the end of her first shift at Warrington Hospital, according to reports.
Professor Annette McIntosh-Scott, executive dean of the university’s faculty of health and social care, and also provost of its Warrington campus, said: “Our thoughts and prayers are with her family at this time.
“A sudden death is always shocking, and when it is a young person, at the start of their career, it becomes even more poignant,” she said in a statement.
“Lucy Blackburn was a popular and well-respected second year, who was already showing promise in her studies and her clinical practice,” said Professor McIntosh-Scott.
She added: “Our students and staff at the Warrington campus and Warrington Hospital are particularly close-knit communities and have been offered help from both the university’s student support and guidance and chaplaincy teams.”
Karen Dawber, director of nursing and governance at Warrington and Halton Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, which runs Warrington Hospital, also issued a statement paying tribute to Ms Blackburn.
“We are truly saddened by the sad and tragic death of Lucy,” she said. “She was a wonderful student who would have gone on to be an amazing staff nurse.
“Compassionate and caring, she touched the lives of everyone she met at the hospital. Our thoughts are with her family and friends,” added Ms Dawber.
Friends of Ms Blackburn have started a fund in her memory, which they plan to use to buy a minibus for nurses “to get to work safely”. Donations have already surpassed £8,000.
“Everyone who knew her knows how amazing caring and what a beautiful person she was,” they said on the fund’s web page.