Richard Wiliams, who lives in Northampton, has worked as an Advantage Healthcare Assistant since 2014. He originally joined on the recommendation of his brother who worked for the company (then known as Advantage Healthcare). Richard has worked in several care packages over that time and he has progressed from a support worker role to an established and sought after complex care Healthcare Assistant.
The 42-year-old was born in Nigeria and came to the UK in 2002. After several years studying IT, Richard reassessed his choices and moved into care work. Before he joined Advantage Healthcare, Richard worked in a nursing home. He soon realised that he wanted to increase his knowledge of healthcare and train to assist clients in a more varied and challenging environment.
Richard said: “For me, healthcare is the perfect career. I like to understand people, whether they are old, or young or have reduced capacity, I have sympathy with them and their frustrations.
“As a father, I know that when young people shout and argue that they aren’t angry at me, often they are scared. So I stay calm with them and take time to explain what is happening. I feel young at heart therefore I find it easy to build rapport through humour and taking an interest in what’s important to them, like fashion or computer games.”
During his time at Advantage Healthcare, Richard’s training has included tracheostomy care, ventilation, peg feeding, incontinence care and epilepsy. He has worked in a number of long term care packages, often as a lone worker, or as part of a new team where Richard’s experience and calm manner has helped to establish the smooth running of packages at an early stage.
Richard’s clients have included a young man at Colchester University who was pursuing his studies whilst managing multiple sclerosis; a young man with a spinal cord injury and an elderly man with a spinal injury who needed tracheostomy care at night so that he could sleep. On one occasion Richard had to make a quick decision to call an ambulance for a client who has a head cold which was causing life threatening complications.
Richard explained: “I knew that he needed to be seen by a doctor so I called an ambulance straightaway. The young man spent five days in hospital and I stayed with him to provide reassurance and be a familiar face.
“At the hospital, once his condition had stabilised, they let me continue with his tracheostomy care. I’m confident in my decisions and I know that I’m trusted by my branch so I called the ambulance first and spoke to the branch later. I’m happy to say that the young man has recovered.”
Richard works in placements across the East of England. He follows care plans which have been devised by a branch nurse and client care manager.
Deputy Branch Manager, Fiona Faircloth, said: “Richard is a valuable member of the team who is frequently requested back by those he works with.” Advantage Healthcare is recruiting for complex care Healthcare Assistants as well as registered nurses.