home News Who is the nurse taking over Newcastle Monument Metro station? Meet Gemma Douglas – ChronicleLive

Who is the nurse taking over Newcastle Monument Metro station? Meet Gemma Douglas – ChronicleLive


From reuniting people with long-lost relatives to organising last minute weddings, this is the inspirational nurse who helps her dying patients’ dreams come true.

For the next eight weeks, passengers at Monument Metro station will notice that major advertising boards have been replaced with pictures of local Marie Curie nurse Gemma Douglas and a call for people to ‘Join Team Gemma’.

The terminal illness charity has taken over the station to raise awareness of the work their nurses do and fund a local nurse at its Newcastle hospice.

And in a bid to prove that working at a hospice is “not all doom and gloom”, Gemma has spoken about her work helping dying patients fulfil their bucket lists.

“Just because someone is dying it doesn’t mean they have to give up on their dreams,” Gemma said.

“It’s so rewarding when I’ve been able to encourage someone to do what makes them happy.”

The 34-year-old, from Rowlands Gill qualified as a nurse two years ago and worked at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Gateshead before joining Marie Curie six months later.

She said: “I always wanted to work in palliative care.

“The Marie Curie hospice is so different to a hospital and it’s a really rewarding to work here – it’s less clinical and just suited to helping the patients get the most out of their lives.”

Gemma said: “One woman wanted to skydive. I told her to just go for it and I felt so great when she finally did.

“Another woman who was near the end of her life had had enough of the four walls of her room. But at the hospice every room opens up into the garden, so we were able to push her bed out onto her patio so she could spend her final hours outside.

“On one occasion, there was a couple who wanted to get married – the guy was dying and he didn’t have very long left, so the hospice actually arranged for them to get married.

“I think that if someone really wants to do something, they should because at that stage, there’s nothing to lose.”

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In another case, Gemma and other staff at the hospice helped a patient who hadn’t spoken to his family in years to make peace with his sister before he died.

“I spoke to the sister and she said how much she loved him and how much she missed him.

“I raced down the corridor to tell him – I was crying when I was telling him.

“Because he was happy that he made peace with his sister, I think he literally went just after that. But it was a nice ending.

“There was another patient who was told that he would never walk again with his condition.

“The physio here, Patrick worked very hard with him and now he’s actually walking with crutches.

“Me and some of the nurses made him a medal and presented him with it. We were singing the theme from the Olympics! He was overwhelmed, he was crying.”

The takeover will continue for 8 weeks, during which Marie Curie will be at the station, providing commuters with information about the charity’s services.



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