Nurse Gerry Sanderson, RN, CDP
Gerry is a Hingham resident and a mother of four. She has also cared for hundreds of patients and families across the South Shore in her role as a nurse at NVNA and Hospice. She is a familiar face at Allerton House and the Pat Roche Hospice Home. Gerry is also a nursing clinical instructor at UMass Boston and the MGH Institute for Health Professionals. The Home Care Alliance of Massachusetts named her “Clinician of the Year” in 2019. She was also presented with the “Robert F. Dwyer Compassionate Care Award” last summer. An anonymous community member was so impressed with Gerry’s teaching that they donated for scholarships and created the “Gerry Sanderson Educational Fund.” This charitable gift has helped dozens of Gerry’s colleagues at NVNA and Hospice elevate their practice, earn certifications and pursue their RN and BSN. People can donate in Gerry’s honor at nvna.org.
Hingham, meet Gerry.
What inspired you to become a nurse?
Basically, I just felt nursing was a great profession to go into. When I was in high school, it was great to either be a nurse or a teacher ... now I’m both.
How long have you worked for NVNA and Hospice?
What do you consider to be the most fulfilling part of your job?
Helping patients to be able to get well and stay in their homes and teaching them to manage their disease processes
What do you enjoy more- nursing or teaching?
It is hard to differentiate. I love taking care of patients, especially the elderly. But, I also really love to teach the nursing students
If you had a different career, what would it be?
I can’t imagine a different career.
If you could pass along one message to your 21 year-old self, what would it be?
Keep learning and keep getting more degrees. My line to students is the most important thing I will teach them, “how to think like a nurse.”
When presented with two options, when did you make a choice that totally changed the course of your life?
There really have been so many memorable moments, all of them making the nurse I am still after all these years.
Do you have a favorite patient story?
When a patient‘s husband named me “Mother Theresa” because I was able to heal her chronic issue, he then shortened it to Therese, which is what he always called me, instead of Gerry. This was fine until the priest came from St Paul’s to visit while I was there and he introduced me as Mother Theresa.
What do you love most about Hingham?
I love the people of Hingham. I love the sense of community. I love the schools and the sports. It was a great place for my four children to grow up
Favorite local spots?
Stars on Hingham Harbor and the Hingham Yacht Club
Who do you find to be the most inspiring people in Hingham?
My elderly neighbors who continue to live well in the community. They are in their mid-90s.
What is one thing on your bucket list?
I want to travel more. This will make people that know me will laugh because I am always traveling. I would like to go to Italy.