Overall view of my first placement is good. A great first experience and insight to the hospital wards. My mentor was a band 5 staff nurse who had been working the wards for years so her knowledge was amazing. In fact all of the staff working on the ward I was on were so knowledgable and really great at educating the patients on everything they asked. It showed confidence for the patient. It put the patients at ease and gave the patient confidence in the hospital, I know this because one of the things I wanted to do personally was get patient feedback about the ward, staff and the hospital itself. After all they are on the front line of it all, they hear and see everything and patient care is first priority. A number of patients I spoke to praised the ward and staff, they were highly impressed ‘especially after reading the bad press about the hospital’. The comments made me feel good about my first placement.
Main things that went well during placement:
- My mentor allowed me to do things from a distance from her. This gave me confidence that she felt I was safe to care for patients.
- Mentor encouraged me to use aseptic technique to change various dressings on wounds. This helped me use the skills I had learnt during university. I gained great feedback on this from staff.
- I have leant the routine of the ward, MDT, basic care for patients, fluid and diet assessments, pressure area care, wound management, stoma and catheter care, observations (and very poorly patient observations), admitting and discharging a patient, visit to theatres to see an operation.
- Used professional values and skills following BCU guidelines and the NMC code of conduct well and feedback has stated this.
Things that didn’t go as well:
- Nightshifts. For me personally I didn’t feel I learnt anything or had opportunity to learn any skills during my night shifts. I had 3 nights in a row and sadly had to call in sick for the third one. It really altered my whole body doing nights, I was all out of sync, I couldn’t sleep in the day and i was physically sick. Being a proud person with punctuality this really disheartened me that I had to call in sick. But I had to for patient safety and my own safety.
- I feel the ward was so busy, there wasn’t time to spend time with patients that really need it. For e.g, a patient with dementia, I feel they need a bit more support and someone to talk to on the ward.
- On my first day I dropped a jug of water on the floor in the patients bay area, I will forever kick myself for this…. haha.
Now to revise physiology ready for my OSCE exam on the 8th June!! Argghhhh…..