This reflective essay will reflect on my experience of the adaptation course. In order to gain an insight into my development I will focus on certain issues that have been prominent during the course.
I studied and trained as a nurse in the Czech Republic. Upon graduating I worked part time in an oncology department and then full time in a general medicine department for 7 months. Then I decided to come to England to learn English and to try living in different country. During my stay here it came to my attention that there was a shortage of nurses and so I went about applying to be registered with NMC.
I found there to be a very large amount of paperwork and that the process was slow but it was well worth the wait. When I started working on Wellington ward (Royal London Hospital - Whitechapel) I was very surprised just how much I had forgotten in the two years that I had away from nursing. Despite this I was quite lucky in that I had a lot of support from my mentor and the other staff in my team; it's thanks to them I am now at the end of my supervised practice period and I feel confident about being registered and having my own group of patients to look after.
One of the greatest difficulties was the language barrier even though I had been in England for a while and studied for the required International English Language Testing System qualification. I had to learn many new words, abbreviations and names of medicines. I would usually write these down and look them up as I returned home after work in order to keep up to speed.
I also found it helped immensely that I am good team worker. This combined with a friendly attitude made the adaptation process trouble-free. Completing this course meant a lot to me; I proved to myself that I am able to overcome the obstacles involved in living and working in a different country.
In a typical day, patients, their relatives or carers may present many a complaint; the role of the nurse requires much consideration in order to be effective and competent. The nurse covers all duties necessary for her allocated group of patients from managing admission to organising discharge. In between these lie may other tasks from taking observations, administering drugs, aid with personal hygiene, referrals.
Although there are several skills required in order to be become an effective nurse, there are particular areas that I personally have and continue to struggle with. During the adaptation months I found I had problems with over involving myself emotionally, this manifested itself when I spent time with the more frail elderly patients on the ward. There have been certain situations that have made me feel extremely drained and genuinely sad after I have been through them. I was in a way feeling the pain that the patient was going through, even though I could never know what this was really like. It seemed impossible not to take the way you feel home with you. In the ward we do get some chance to talk about patients at work but sometimes I do carry issues home and talk things over with a friend (without compromising confidentiality).
On reflection, I feel that I may have entered a 'dangerous zone'. (Mitchell & Cormack 1998:140). I can feel in myself that this is something that requires careful thinking and training of some sort. This should not to result in cutting myself off from what the patient may be going through, which may result in incompetent and insensitive practice, but to somehow control my emotions.
If I enter into practitioner-hood with this issue then it may result in me becoming a 'wounded healer' and my own personal health could become compromised; therefore this needs to be addressed in addition to feelings of vulnerability that could arise as an effect of the emotional involvement. The consequences of not being able to deal with the emotions that may be brought up may result in emotional exhaustion, or overexertion and result in emotional drain. (Mitchell &...
References: *1 Dr. Albert Schwetzer, Quoted in N. Cousins, (1979) Anatomy of an Illness. New York: W. W. Norton, p58
Balint M., (1964) The Doctor, His Patient and the Illness. New York: International Press.
Matthew S., Suchman A. L., Branch W. T., (1993) Making 'Connexions ': "Enhancing the Therapeutic Potential of Patient-clinician Relationship." Annuals of Internal Medicine. 118. Found in Millenson. (See below)
Millenson J. R. PhD, (1995) Mind Matters - Psychological Medicine in Holistic Practice. Eastland Press, Seattle.
Mitchell A., Cormack M., (1998) The Therapeutic Relationship in Complementary Health Care. Churchill Livingstone, London
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