Two long-serving members of staff who were due to retire from Hinchingbrooke Hospital, have decided to extend their stay in the light of the current coronavirus pandemic.

Jim McWilliams has put off his retirement to assist colleagues at Hinchingbrooke HospitalJim McWilliams has put off his retirement to assist colleagues at Hinchingbrooke Hospital

Jim McWilliams has spent his 26-year NHS career at the hospital assisting clinical staff and ensuring that patients get the best medical care by providing equipment and making it available and safe to use.

He said: “The most rewarding part of the job is working with my teams and being able to assist them to excel in their roles. It’s also important to work with other staff throughout the Trust and bring any issues they have to a satisfactory conclusion.”

Jim began working at Hinchingbrooke Hospital, run by North West Anglia Foundation Trust, in 1994 after serving in the Royal Air Force for 23 years’. Jim initially joined Hinchingbrooke as a medical equipment technician and then began managing technical services in 1999.

Bev Balls, patient services manager at Hinchingbrooke, has also prolonged her retirement. Bev started working for the NHS in 1980, aged 20, at the old county hospital as a domestic assistant.

When Hinchingbrooke Hospital replaced the hospital, Bev was relocated to work in catering.

Bev said: “Being in catering made me who I am and gave me the opportunity to grow and develop my potential with a great team and then move on to new challenges. I became patient service lead in 2014 and have had the privilege to manage a multi skilled team.

“I consider myself so lucky to have had the opportunities to grow and develop within an organisation that makes a real difference. I am only what I am because of the support of all the staff around me. This is why I have decided to postpone my retirement so I can stay and help out during the pandemic.”