Getting to know Marisa Curran, Head of Healthcare
After 25 years of working in South Africa’s medical field, Marisa Curran, Head of Heatherton House, Helderberg Village’s frail care centre, has a great deal of knowledge regarding the industry and more than a few profound insights about life to share.
Living within the beautiful surroundings of Helderberg Village, where there is so much one can do, is special, but one of the most valuable aspects of the estate, must be the peace of mind that comes with knowing that world-class healthcare is so readily available. And this, says Marisa is the most unusual aspect of Heatherton House.
“Heatherton House is unique in that we offer extraordinary accommodation and state-of-the-art service in a country where these qualities are difficult to find. This is in keeping with the outstanding and professional way in which the village is managed, as well as the unusual variety of opportunities available. Whether it’s sport, art, music or group excursions, there’s something for everyone,” says Marisa.
There have been many interesting twists and turns through her career journey, says Marisa, but several constants emerge: her love for people, training others and also furthering her own education.
Since first beginning her training in 1978, Marisa has gained considerable experience in hospital trauma units, recruited medical professionals for overseas markets, taught the practical components of the Enrolled Nurses Assistant course and completed her own Higher Diploma in Community Nursing and Primary Health Care.
And only last year, 30 years after her journey began, Marisa completed her Nursing Management Diploma which enables her to formally participate in the decision making process of a patient’s healthcare, an aspect of her current position that she describes as very rewarding.
Nursing is a profession that depends on having a love for people, but other characteristics that are essential to Marisa’s general nursing and staff recruitment process include professionalism, friendliness, bilingualism, honesty and hard work.
We concluded our time with Marisa with four important questions:
What is your most valuable, personal health advice?
Take time to switch off, destress and recharge the batteries. For me, that means walking my dog, living a balanced lifestyle and regular weekends away up the West Coast.
What would you change about your industry in South Africa if you could, we asked?
Training nurses effectively.
With all your own life experience and being surrounded by people in their sunset years, what life advice would you give to your younger self?
Listen to people before you speak or make a decision.
What’s it like working with the elderly and their families?
Working so closely with the elderly is enormously gratifying. My advice to families is simple, spend as much time as possible with your relatives, they will not live forever.