James Paget at 40: How ward sister Toni's life is linked to hospital

Toni Ogogo is a ward sister at the hospital

Toni Ogogo is a ward sister at the hospital - Credit: JPUH

The James Paget University Hospital is celebrating the 40th anniversary of its official opening.

To help celebrate the landmark date we have been talking to some of the staff who work there. Here we speak to ward sister Toni Ogogo.

Toni Ogogo’s life is entwined with the history of the James Paget Hospital.

She was born at the hospital in 1987 - the first baby to be born on the Easter Sunday that year.

By that time, the hospital had been operating for five years. But the Maternity Department had been a late arrival, transferring from the Northgate Hospital in Great Yarmouth several years after the James Paget opened its doors to the first patients.

Scroll forward 35 years, and Toni now spends her days caring for patients at the Paget, as a sister on Ward 16.

Toni Ogogo was born at the James Paget Hospital

Toni Ogogo was born at the James Paget Hospital - Credit: JPUH

“Growing up, I knew I always wanted to be a nurse, following in my Mum’s footsteps. She was a psychiatric nurse and loved her job and I wanted to be like her. I pursued my dream and qualified myself in 2008,” said Toni, who lives in Pakefield, Lowestoft.

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In between times, Toni has had many life experiences at the hospital, where she has also worked on Ward 15 as well as supporting the COVID-19 vaccination hub at the Louise Hamilton Centre.

“The James Paget has as special place in my heart,” she said. “Both of my grandparents lived out the end of their lives here, and were shown very compassionate palliative care.

“At the other end of the spectrum, I gave birth to two of my four children at the hospital; I also had a home birth that was supported by the hospital team and again very attentive care was received.”

Looking ahead, Toni sees her future very much at Paget.

“I enjoy it here and like the fast pace of working in an acute hospital - and have been lucky to work with some great teams,” she said.

“I am also a home bird. I love living in this area - particularly the beach, where I really enjoy walking my Mum’s dog.”