Marissa’s Story

Marissa hits the jackpot with her first job at HammondCare

Marissa has been working as an Occupational Therapist in the Palliative Care team at HammondCare's Greenwich Hospital for three years. She knew she wanted to be involved on a more permanent basis after she joined the rehabilitation unit to complete her university degree placement in 2017.

“I fell in love with HammondCare straight away!” says Marissa. “I started as an Allied Health Assistant and being part of such a close-knit multi-disciplinary team is so rewarding. Every day when I arrive at work it’s as if I am coming home to family. It feels very comfortable.”

Marissa Story HammondCare Greenwich Hospital Palliative Care OT Occupational Therapy Flip

Marissa is a full-time member of the team where she provides rehabilitation and palliative support to patients.

“Our team focus is giving patients what they want, not just what they need when they are nearing the end of their lives. For example, if someone wishes to die at home, we try to make it happen for them.”

Marissa appreciates the many aspects to her role. “When I am working in the rehab space, it is very rewarding to see patients improve day by day.” She finds equal fulfilment administering care in the palliative environment. “It is wholistic, fulfilling work. We get to celebrate the small things and to be totally in the moment with the patients.”

There have been numerous memorable occasions for Marissa at Greenwich Hospital, such as when a young patient with leukaemia proposed to his girlfriend. They got married before he passed away. “It was a team effort to make this happen for him – our social worker, pastoral care team and Nurse Unit Manager came together to action his last wish.

“That’s another reason why I endorse HammondCare: it’s a level working environment where I get to work alongside patients, families and health care professionals. The combined team work hard to enable choice and we tailor our practices to include the other people in patients’ lives. It’s an inclusive setting where we are also challenged to adjust to different situations and circumstances, daily. Every patient is unique, and we respond accordingly.“As an organisation, HammondCare upholds a very flexible 'person-centred' approach to delivering care to our patients. We make things happen. I really enjoy this aspect of my job. I feel very supported by my team; we support each other. I know I can approach anyone for advice, whether it is a colleague or a senior member. I never feel alone.”

Marissa has a range of patients in her care, aged from 20s to 90s. She has grown her communication and rapport building skills on the job. “I feel valued. My opinion is always considered. I am encouraged to come up with innovative ideas no matter how complex or simple. We find time to have fun, too.”

Marissa, talking with fellow carer, OT, palliative care, HammondCare, occupational therapy

Another highlight for Marissa has been participating in the DREAMS Project. “A patient I was caring for requested to go on a shopping trip in a taxi before he passed away. It was very rewarding to enable that wish for him. I will always remember the expression of joy on his face when he saw the taxi pull up.

“I couldn't imagine working anywhere else. I feel very lucky to be working at HammondCare. The on the job training, support and friendly environment are second to none. I've hit the jackpot with my first job!”

You can find out more about a career with HammondCare Health here.