Royal Liverpool University Hospital

Charlotte Croghan has swapped her student digs for a Liverpool Hospital working as a healthcare assistant during the pandemic.

The first year adult nursing student has been working on respiratory wards for the past couple of weeks. When she isn’t working, she attends her online learning sessions for Liverpool’s John Moores University.

Charlotte chose to work on the frontline herself whilst her course is no longer on campus, giving her a chance to help people and learn at the same time.



There’s been plenty of headlines and reports of personal protective equipment not being available to NHS workers, however Charlotte says her hospital isn’t neglecting the safety hazards.

“At my trust we do have sufficient PPE, we don’t have any problems with that at the moment.”

Admitting the role is different to being a student at a placement, Croghan said the staff are always there to help.


One of the hardest parts of the job is seeing patients to the end of their lives, she says. Hospital rules have changed because of COVID-19.

“We knew patients were dying but we couldn’t stay in the room and hold their hand while they were dying”

Families aren’t allowed to visit and have to be told on the phone as their family member passes, the 20 year old recalls. “We knew patients were dying but we couldn’t stay in the room and hold their hand while they were dying.

It’s really really difficult to just watch someone die behind the closed door. It isn’t usual healthcare practice and it’s obviously really upsetting”.

However she is happy to keep on working until she’s no longer needed, and can return to her status as a full time student.

Charlotte hopes that people will see these unusual healthcare practices as further encouragement to follow the government’s advice on protecting themselves and the NHS.

Stay home, save lives. If you’re unsure of any restrictions in place because of the pandemic you can check them here.