Janice Brownhill is a Paediatric Therapy Assistant at The Royal London Hospital.
Working with the Physiotherapy and Occupational Team, she assists children following traumatic brain injuries, post orthopaedic surgeries, and polytraumas. Her role involves a range of ward work, including assessments, rehabilitation, and treatment.
Janice was born in Upney Hospital and has lived in Dagenham her whole life. She started working at Barts Health almost 23 years ago as an Orthopaedic Paediatric Receptionist.
Despite edging towards retirement, Janice made a brave career change and was successful in applying for the position she’s in today. “I decided to make the change as I wanted to be more hands on with the children on a more one to one basis. It was something I had always wanted to do, but never had the courage to do so”.
One of the reasons Janice was nominated is because of her natural ability to form meaning relationships with people. Supporting patients with complex needs and ensuring their hospital experience is always joyous is something that Janice is admired for. “Over the years I like to think I have made the patients feel at ease with their appointments by making them smile. I am always aware that I am here because I want to be, but they are here because they have to be”.
Janice also explained that she enjoyed helping staff members when needed. She believes that “a good working relationship makes a happy team”.
Since starting her new role in January 2019, Janice has flourished and become an inspiration to her colleagues. Not only does she assist the team with daily tasks and help patients reach their therapy goals, she has also overcome her fear of using technology and is now a “whizz” at writing notes on CRS! “I found the prospect of using CRS on a different scale very daunting. I like to think I am improving with each passing day but going from a system that I knew for over 20 years to something new was scary”.
When asked about some women that inspire her, Janice explained there were many. She first mentioned the Queen for her service to the country and who she has met twice. The first occasion was at the RLH after the London bombings in which Janice was tasked with caring for the wounded; the second occasion was a visit the Queen made to the healing space on the paediatric ward.
As well as admiring her two sisters for always being there when needed, Janice went on to explain how she also admired the people she worked with. “All of my colleagues work to improve patients' lives on a day-to-day basis. Sometimes, the work they do goes unnoticed or without appreciation. I know how hard they work and it’s something I admire greatly”.
A proud achievement for Janice was obtaining her new role at the age of 62. “Finding enjoyment in my new role, sharing a smile, putting all patients at ease and making their visit a more pleasurable experience are the things that motivate me greatly. The world would be a much nicer place if everyone took the time to treat as they would be treated. If I can help make my colleagues work life that little bit easier, then I know I’m doing a good job”.