Mrs Lillian Cowdery discusses the routine of a district nurse in Stevenage
Lillian Cowdery discusses her role as a district nurse and the kinds of cases she would have on a day to day basis.
Interviewer: What sort of cases did you have?
Lillian: Ooh everything, all sorts, except midwifery of course. The midwives used to do the midwifery. Anything, anything, burns, scalds, after operation care. Anything in the nursing line we used to have.
Interviewer: And you would just visit them?
Lillian: Oh yes, when you, you’d go into a house, and with your Queen’s Training you are taught to apply different appliances to give you what you need. If there was a, if you went into a poor house and there was no basin, you would use a kettle, you would tear sheets
Interviewer: For bandages?
Lillian: Yes, all sorts, we were taught that, it was Queen’s Training you see, to adapt yourself to things that you hadn’t got for nursing, that you’d got to have and we always used to carry with us a bag with sterile towels and all the instruments we needed; forceps, scissors, probes, all sorts of things for our work, always had a bag and that used to have to be cleaned out every week
Interviewer: So it was all ready?
Lillian: To replenish towels and bandages and things like that. So it was always doing something or other. We used to have to keep a day to day sheet of what we’d done and what was wrong and all that sort of thing so that our supervisors, which would come about every 6 months to see you, check up on your work, what you’d done, what your bag was like and go around cases with you.
Interviewer: Did they come from the County?
Lillian: Came from the County yes. The last one was Miss Kestin
Lillian Cowdery 1987