WHEN Mavis Midgley walks through Proserpine Hospital, she's greeted by everyone she walks by.
That comes as no surprise, because this month Mavis celebrates 46 years of looking after the health of the Whitsunday community.
"I first started out as a dental nurse at the age of 15 because I wasn't old enough to go into nursing," she said.
"I always knew as soon as I was ready I would become a nurse.
"Even when I was a little girl I was patching things up and practising on dolls."
One thing she believes never changes in healthcare is the need to connect with patients and their families, as well as the teamwork involved.
"You need to be caring and have the ability to empathise but you also have to keep your head and stay cool and calm in certain situations," she said.
"I think camaraderie is also important and we definitely have that here.
"We've been to each other's weddings, been there when babies have been born and we are like one big family."
Mavis loves her "very caring community" and the kindness she has seen over the years is what drives her to keep nursing.
"When we first built this hospital it was the service clubs that furnished the hospital and that is just one example of how giving people are here," she