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Niru and 45 years of dedicated care of patients with memory challenges

08 Mar 2020

The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared the year 2020 as the ‘Year of the Nurse and Midwife’, recognising best nursing and midwifery practices. One who deserves such recognition for 45 years of service in the public sector and the NHS is Niru Ladva.

Niru has spent her whole working life in NHS roles across West London, in a career dedicated to working with clients with memory issues.

Niru’s recruitment journey began in 1975, when she was appointed a Domestic at Emerson Ward for ten years. Now she works for West London’s Cognitive Impairment and Dementia service (CIDs), as a Community Support Worker.

One of the leading voices for patients who have dementia, Niru promotes social inclusion of older people with memory problems, through enabling them to participate in social, economic and cultural activities, such as music therapy.

“I am really passionate about giving people with memory challenges, a voice,” Niru says. “Raising their profile through partnerships with organisations in the community, for example, can help reduce the stigma of the conditions they are living with.”

So what has kept Niru in the NHS for over 40 years?

“While I’ve seen a lot of change since 1975, what’s remained the same is how staff at West London are encouraged to train and progress,” she says. “Clinical supervision, the appraisal process and mandatory training have been vital ways to support staff.”

“The Trust is also very good at listening to carers’ voices, as they are encouraged to be proactively involved in their loved one’s care plans. The Triangle of Care really helps in developing this.”

Niru says what drives her most in her job is, “Having the balance between a good team ethic and great level of patient care and support, as this leads to staff achieving their goals. Patients are cared for in a safe environment, leaving their carers at ease. This in turn, gives everyone the knowledge that we’re doing right by our patients.”

Working for the NHS has enabled Niru to continue to expand her expertise in caring, through raising the profile of CIDs, understanding the varying cultural, religious and spiritual needs of patients, providing multilinguistic support and carrying out key neuro-psychology assessments.

Niru’s hard work was rewarded in 2016, when she received the Trust’s Employee of the Month award, in recognition of her commitment, and enjoyment in bringing the best out of colleagues and patients.