Belfast Telegraph

Game Of Thrones star Emilia Clarke praises nurses who cared for her dying father

The actress is an ambassador for the Royal College of Nursing.

Game Of Thrones star Emilia Clarke has spoken about the devastating experience of losing her father as she praised the nurses who helped care for him and called for cuts to their funding to stop.

The actress, whose father died of cancer in July 2016, detailed the expertise and compassion of the people caring for him in his last days.

Speaking at an awards ceremony in London, the Royal College of Nursing ambassador, 31, said: “Even in my lifetime, nursing has drastically changed. Nurses are beginning to smash the old stereotypes and, for the first time, performing operations and running doctors’ surgeries.

Silly boomerang for a very serious honour. I have been given the role of Ambassador of the Royal College of Nursing and I honestly couldn’t be happier, prouder or more in awe of the incredible work @thercn does and the masterful work of Nurses the world over. We’ve all had experience dealing with sickness of ourselves or loved ones and the nurses that care for us need our care now, they too often fall victim to outdated ideas that leave fantastic nurses overlooked, under-appreciated and underpaid. I am fiercely proud of my new role as ambassador and vow to use it to champion nurses and their work. Together, we must support the next generation to innovate and become the powerful nurses of tomorrow. #thesunwillshineagain #missingmydadbutrememberingallwhocaredforhimtoday #❤️

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“Our NHS, and other health services around the world, simply could not function without you. But even with the support you give, you aren’t getting it in return.

“Today’s nurses appear an easy target for cuts, not the priority for investment.”

She added: “This reality breaks my heart, as two years ago on the 10th of July I lost my darling dad.

“Our experience was shaped by the care he received. I was given the opportunity to be involved in the intricacies that made up a day of trying to save his life and it showed me with such clarity, not only the awe-inspiring skill that the nurses clearly had, but the emotional intelligence that came along with it.

“After a panic at hearing bells and buzzers I didn’t understand; the hug that came my way and the words that accompanied it both reassured and comforted me.

“I know my dad received the best care and medical support from our nurses that dealt with every second of those dark days.”

Urging nurses to take action to campaign against cuts, Clarke said: “The money the NHS has to keep our nurses trained and at the forefront of healthcare has been cut in half this year in England.

“This has to stop, we have to make a change. We all know the frustrations that go along with student debt.

“Young people who have the drive and commitment are being put off by the new fees they now must pay to train.

“To force the people who save our lives to live on food stamps has to stop. Now, more than ever, we must value nursing.

“Nursing is about more than just medicine; it’s about engaging with another person on a human level. Like hugging a daughter who knows that she is about to lose her dad.

“As ambassador I want to help fund and engage a new generation of specialist nurses. Who, in turn, will deliver innovative practice, improve survival rates and reduce hospital stays; and help those with long-term conditions to live their lives to the full.

“I vow to champion nurses and support workers and to help you gain the recognition and money you deserve. Together, we must support the next generation to innovate and become the powerful nurses of tomorrow.”

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