Celebrating Nurses @ Lakes-Jacqui Guyton


Critical Care Nurse Jacqui Guyton has been nursing for 30 years and still loves it.

Critical Care Nurse Jacqui Guyton has been nursing for 30 years.

“Being a nurse is rewarding. It can be stressful at times, but I honestly could not have imagined myself doing anything else.

Some days I go home physically and emotionally exhausted, but I find strength in knowing I have done my best to care for and support a patient and whānau during a stressful time. Hopefully I make a difference.

I first thought about training to be a nurse when I was a teenager. My grandmother lived with us for a period of time when she had terminal cancer. I used to help her with personal cares, and she would share her thoughts and feelings with me. It was sad but I felt fortunate to have that time with her.

Back in 1994, you graduated from nursing training with a Diploma but during my first two years as a new graduate working full time at Waikato Hospital in Maternity and Paediatrics, I completed my Bachelor of Health Science (Nursing) by distance learning. I’m not sure how I managed to fit it all in!

I’ve worked in SCBU, as a community health nurse and practice nurse, in the Emergency Department for five years, had a short stint as a Plunket nurse and then as the school nurse at Rotorua Boys’ High School - being able to work Monday to Friday and having the school holidays off was a huge bonus!

I loved working with the students. They are young and so full of potential, even though some of them couldn’t see it. I formed a good rapport with so many of them, they trusted me.

I was like a mum, relationship advisor, counsellor, social worker and nurse all rolled into one. In return, they keep me young. I learnt all the latest lingo and we certainly had some laughs.

But I missed the intensity of nursing in the hospital - the clinical, hands-on stuff.

I have been in ICU/CCU (Critical Care) for just over three years. Because we are not a big unit everyone seems to know each other - I like that. It feels like we are one big whānau.

As a nurse I feel privileged to be able to assist and support people when they must be feeling vulnerable and stressed.

I couldn’t have nursed for as long as I have without the support and friendship of so many incredible nurses. The camaraderie we have is strong - maybe it’s the stress, maybe it’s the shift work or maybe it’s just our sense of humour.

Whatever it is, I love it."