A Teesside midwife swapped her mop for managing morning sickness after deciding to follow her teenage dreams.
Lisa Payne has dedicated her career to delivering babies at North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust after taking the brave move to re-train as a midwife twenty years ago this year.
After starting work at the health care trust in 1994 as a domestic on the maternity ward, Lisa was struck by how hard the staff there worked, and how rewarding the job was for her colleagues. She explains more ‘back in 1999 I took a permanent role with the hospital as a domestic on the maternity ward. I spent time getting to know the staff, and it started to really interest me’.
After chatting to her then manager, she enrolled on a level 2 NVQ in Care and secured a role as a Health Care Assistant on the ward. By now Lisa explains, the learning bug had bitten ‘I finished the level 2 qualification, then immediately applied for the level 3. It had become addictive and I was so keen to learn more, I even took a qualification to become an assessor myself to support others studying’.
By 2004 Lisa was ready to take the plunge, she signed up and funded her ‘Access to Health’ course which would allow her to apply for a place at the University of Teesside a year later on a midwifery degree.
Explaining the challenges, she faced, she says ‘I had a formal education and achieved my GCSE results, but math’s had been a struggle for me at school. As condition of the offer from university, I had to ensure I had a minimum level 2 qualification in the subject. After a lot of hard work – I finally achieved it’.
She was accepted through clearing a year early to complete her midwifery degree, and says she has never looked back – ‘when I was 17 I actually applied to be a midwife, but was told I was too young. At that time my family emigrated to Australia, so thoughts of delivering babies went out of my mind. When I think about the way it’s all worked out, I’m really proud’.
Lisa is married with three children and credits her family, friends and colleagues for her success ‘my children were very young when I started my learning, it was challenging at times but my husband was wonderful’.
Lisa’s career has spanned a number of organisations across the region, but she returned to University Hospital of North Tees earlier this year, describing it as ‘coming home’.
Louise Wilkinson, Ward Manager at the Trust comments ‘Lisa is a real success story for what you can achieve once you commit to your ambitions. We determined that she has delivered over 340 babies across our region, impacting so many families at the very start of life. Her dedication has been inspiring, we hope her story might inspire others to choose midwifery as a career’.