HEALTH MATTERS:  Katie knew she wanted to be a nurse – while having a transplant

Katie Watson received the majority of her care and her transplant at the Royal Hospital for Children in Glasgow.

By Lucy Ashton

Nursing, they say is a vocation, but most people enter the profession not really knowing what to expect.
That can’t be said for 18-year-old Katie Watson, who has just begun studying paediatric nursing at Glasgow Caledonian University.

Her career inspiration came from her own personal experience after she was diagnosed with Chronic Myeloid Leukaemia, aged just 14. In 2019, after two years of oral chemotherapy she underwent a bone marrow transplant. Katie received the majority of her care and her transplant at the Royal Hospital for Children in Glasgow.

Katie said: “I had wanted to be a nurse before my treatment, but going through that experience made my mind up. The whole team were amazing, quite inspiring.

“Once the nurses knew that’s what I wanted to be, they would talk me through and explain what they were doing. They would for example show me how to take my own blood pressure; they fed me with knowledge!

“I also think, being through what I have such as my transplant, will help to make me a good nurse. I know how the person in that bed feels, so when my time comes to nurse I will have that insight.”

Katie was treated in a number of wards on the Queen Elizabeth site, including the paediatric oncology ward 6A.

Senior charge nurse Emma Somerville remembers Katie well. She said: “The team and I are delighted to hear how well Katie is doing and has started university!

“She always has a very positive attitude and this had a positive effect on other young people in the ward. She took every day as it came and I think that really helped get her through her treatment.

“We are also so proud her experience inspired her to become a children’s nurse. It’s a real boost for us and we are delighted for her that this is coming true.

“This type of feedback from patients makes all the hard work worthwhile. Good luck Katie!”

Katie is living in Glasgow and making the most of student life.

She said: “I’m enjoying living in halls in Glasgow. I’ve always been quite independent and enjoy being out and about in Glasgow. The course is going great and I’m looking forward to starting placements soon.

“I’m really excited about learning more about being a paediatric nurse and being able to give something back. I want to make children feel better – just like they did for me.”

Leave a Reply