The Liverpool anthem ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’ has a special meaning for nurses Petya and Rali Marinova who share the same job as well as football team.
The twins arrived in the UK over a year and a half ago and subsequently fulfilled their ambition of working at St Marks, one of the world’s leading bowel disease hospitals.
The pair’s dedication to stoma nursing is impressive. They earlier gained their masters qualification in stoma nursing by flying home to Italy once a month over the course of a year, while working as nurses in Ireland, attending the necessary lectures and exams.
“It was tough but the reward is working in a place like this,” said the sisters who originally gained degrees in public relations before retraining.
“Our goal was to always work at St Mark’s so it’s a dream come true.”
Petya and Rali joined the team as stoma nurses supporting patients’ journey prior to surgery, during recovery and their subsequent discharge home helping them adjust to life with a stoma.
Petya said: “It’s an amazing feeling to be working at St Mark’s. It’s a great team and we feel part of a family here.”
Have the twins ever had a disagreement over their career choice?
Rali added: “No, we’re very close and both liked the idea of nursing. We encourage each other to be the best we can be and get to provide care for a group of patients who come here from all over the UK."
A St Mark’s patient recently talked about his experience of living with a stoma bag in the newspapers.
Christopher David Mitchell, a voice coach whose clients include singer Boy George, had kept his condition a secret for six years but made a heartfelt and moving online video to describe his battle.
Petya added: “It can be tough for patients to come to terms with the practicalities of a stoma, but part of our job is to help them come to terms with that and be able to get on with their lives.”