A dedicated midwife has delivered her last bundle of joy before going on to enjoy a happy retirement.
Marie Pearce, originally from Canada, is hanging up her stethoscope after almost 40 years’ service to the NHS – during which time she has delivered more than 5,000 babies and looked after two generations of mothers.
Marie began her career at the Whittington Hospital, North London, as a nurse, before going on to qualified as a midwife.
She then spent time working at the former St Paul’s hospital and the ‘new’ Hemel Hempstead hospital, before joining Fernville Surgery in the town’s Midland Road in 1994.
According to Marie, some of the biggest changes she has seen over her long career include an immense increase in paperwork, which she says results in less time spent with mothers. In addition, she says birth rates are increasing each year, while there is a national shortage of midwives.
Her retirement plans include forthcoming surgery for a ‘new’ knee and travelling the globe.
Later, Marie hopes to train as a ‘doula’ – a woman who gives support to another woman during pregnancy, labour and after the birth, so that she can go back to what she enjoys doing the most.
Patient services manager at Fernville Claire Houlihan said: “On behalf of Fernville and the thousands of families that Marie has cared for over the years, we wish her a happy, healthy and fulfilling retirement.”