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How returning to education helped Pete discover a future career opportunity

Pete works in a hospital outpatient department. He cares for people who need dialysis as their kidneys cannot remove waste products and extra fluid from their blood.

Pete's story

After working in factories since leaving school, I decided to go to college to study IT and Health and Social Care, as I saw the NHS as a future career opportunity for me. As I was good with my hands and enjoy working with people, the role of a renal care assistant ticked a lot of boxes for me as a job I could do.

How did you get started in the NHS?

I began looking at jobs in the NHS and saw a job for a renal care assistant. I did some research on dialysis, dialysis machines, and caring for patients. I then applied for the job, was given an interview, and was lucky enough to be offered the job as a renal care assistant.

Describe a typical day for you.

I work in the outpatient department, where I meet and greet renal dialysis patients. I assess their health and wellbeing before assisting the nurse in attaching the patient to the dialysis machine for their treatment. I then monitor the patients throughout their treatment, making sure they receive the best care possible.

After the treatment, I discharge the patient from the unit.

What is the best part of your day?

The best part of my day is meeting all the renal patients. Some patients are new to the unit, and others have been receiving treatment for a while. Building relations with the patients is an important part of the job. I get to know them personally and make them feel safe while receiving treatment.

What are the most important skills for a renal care assistant?

The key skills for my job include good communication skills, working in a team, and delivering excellent patient care. A willingness to learn and a flexible approach to the needs of the renal service is important too.

What advice would you give to someone else thinking about a career as a renal care assistant in the NHS?

The NHS is an amazing organisation to have a career in. Being a renal care assistant is the best job I've ever had. The support I receive from the team gives me the confidence to do my job every day.

There are endless opportunities for people of all abilities to work in the NHS.

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