Louth Nurse Retires Following Distinguished 46 Year Career

Helping to set up a military health clinic in The Yemen, meeting Mother Teresa and mentoring students here in Lincolnshire are among the highlights of a distinguished nursing career for Julie Bevan. 

But Julie is now looking forward to enjoying a slower pace of life as she retires from her post as a respiratory complex case manager with Lincolnshire Community Health Services NHS Trust (LCHS).

Julie's colleagues bid her a very fond good luck and farewell on Friday with a special celebration at County Hospital, Louth.

"I have had an amazing time here at LCHS," explained Julie. "I have had the pleasure of working with lots of like-minded people and such wonderful and courageous respiratory patients. It's going to be a huge change to retire, but it is time to take a breath and give myself time to go and do something nice."

After joining the Army as a nurse at 17, Julie's 46-year career took her all over the world, including to be a midwife's assistant in Germany. In 1989, her military connections gave her the opportunity to set up a clinic for the American Embassy in Sana'a for the marines. It was here that she met Mother Teresa, who was visiting a leper colony near to the clinic where Julie worked. 

Over the years, Julie has worked in many nursing homes, including her own which she had in Penzance. It was a nursing home that brought Julie to Lincolnshire, where she worked for many years. She began working in intermediate care for the NHS in 2004. 

Julie had already developed a keen interest in education, having been one of the first students to undertake a gerontology nursing degree module and successfully apply for a Florence Nightingale scholarship. She undertook opportunities to study at John Hopkins University in the United States of America and present some of her work on nursing people with dementia in Japan. Her research was influenced by caring for her own mother. In 2010, she became a Queen's Nurse.

Julie said: "Everything I have done has been inspired by a patient or experience I have had. When I have students I always ask them who their role models are and what they aspire to do. It's important to remember every day why we aspired to be a nurse; it's about the patients, no matter who they are."

Julie add
ed: "When I am with my patients I think about how courageous they are and it makes me feel very humble. If you enjoy something, it's no effort at all and that is how I feel about nursing."