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A nurse who beat cancer has been nominated for a top health award

Credit: ITV Wales News

An inspirational nurse who beat cancer and is now helping other people battling the disease is in the running for a top health award.

Siwan Owen, 29, who works in the North Wales Cancer Treatment Centre at Ysbyty Glan Clwyd in Bodelwyddan, has been nominated for the Welsh Language Award.

I was amazed to find out I had been nominated but it’s really nice to think someone has recognised what I do in my day to day work.

But it’s not just about me, it’s about the whole team I work with.

I know from my own experience that being able to hear your diagnosis and what’s happening to you in your first language, in my case Welsh, is so important.

It’s especially important when you have just heard you have cancer.

Translating medical information and details of medication and treatments into Welsh is so important for a Welsh first language patient especially at a time when they are at their most vulnerable.

I really am proud to have been nominated for the Welsh Language staff award although it’s just what I do every day.

I have been through the cancer experience and know what it’s like so being able to understand your diagnosis and get advice in your first language is vital.

I don’t think I do anything too special to be honest.

– Siwan Owen
Credit: ITV Wales News

Siwan said she was inspired to become a haematology clinical nurse thanks to the nurse who helped her when she was diagnosed with leukaemia.

I grew up in Trelogan, Flintshire, where I still live with my parents. I fell ill when I was 11 and it took two weeks before I finally got my diagnosis.

I had a rough time going through my cancer treatment and lost all my hair and had to use a wheelchair. I also missed a lot of school but gradually caught up.

I had to undergo two-and-a-half years of chemotherapy and as Welsh was, and still is, my first language having someone there to tell me what was happening in Welsh so I could fully understand was so important to me.

I was helped by an inspirational nurse called Eleri Roberts who now lives on Anglesey. I still see her quite often and talk on the phone. She was one of the main reasons I have followed the career path that I have.

– Siwan Owen

The awards will be announced at a ceremony next month.