Thursday, January 31, 2008

First Clinical

Assisted living facility. Mostly women in residence. Caucasian population. Why are we required to take Cultural Anthroplogy? So P.C. that it bothers me a bit. I am very liberal and am not racist, sexist or anything else of the sort. I've dated guys of all races. I slept about four hours last night even though the place is only five minutes away from me. I just worried a bit though once I got there I was fine I think because it was just a tour. Next week we will start to assess our clients.

I did get a bit sad because I thought of my nana who died in April and had to be in an assisted living/rehab place after she broke her hip. I'm glad she went home from there (even though she was unwell with dementia). She died at home. I miss her sometimes. My grandfather died in September so it's all weird to see old, old people.

The lack of pocket space on the scrubs is going to be a huge issue. We are expected to carry IN OUR pockets:
bandage scissors
drug guide
nursing diagnosis book
pen light

and then she told us to leave our coats in the car? So we have to put our car keys in the pocket too along with lip gloss, hand cream? Yikes!

Five weeks here and then we move on to five weeks at a Rehab facility.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

First Day at Lab:TPR and medical math

So nervous driving over to lab today. Yikes! I thought I'd be late and then that I would not do very well on the quiz. The way it works is we do the reading, have a quiz, learn skills and then get tested on the skills [certified so that we can participate in clinical].

Temperature, pulse and respiration. I learned the proper technique for taking a tympanic temp. Rotate once its in the ear because it scans. Why didn't anyone ever tell me that? Apical pulse is a bit tricky but it's not that hard. Transitioning from taking the pulse to respirations is always a challenge. I have poor short term memory with numbers.

As far as the math that we did: I work with dimensional analysis and cannot do it any other way. In fact, with my method, I was the only one to get this problem.

grain 1/125=_____mg

Dimensional Analysis:


then>>>> 60/125 mg=

12/25 mg=

0.48 mg

Health care workers without healthcare

Have you ever considered the hypocrisy of working in healthcare without healthcare coverage-- despite the new Massachusetts law?

I am in that situation. Currently, I work at Mt. Auburn hospital as a Clinical Assistant; per-diem. I had hoped for a part-time, benefitted position but it does not seem that this will be possible in the department in which I work.

I just had to apply for Mass Health and know many of my nursing school classmates as well as a few co-workers [part-time/benefits eligible positions but healthcare is not affordable]are in the same predicament.

But we are with sick people all the time! We are on the front line for infectious diseases and we cannot maintain proper prevention by having a decent health care? Sure, I am fully immunized but I could easily be exposed to unknown toxins and microorganisms. I think it is outrageous.
Week One down and I'm already sleeping much better.

I know that the instructors need to address every student in the class and what applies to one does not apply to all etc. I found it interesting that there is much focus on mothers/children and time management in regards to a family. Does not apply for me: a single girl with no worries! Right. I wish.

As I joined the school gym [bargain] it's making it easier to work out so I will be much more consistent. My aim is five-six days/week.

Some things I found interesting:
--More than half my class has some sort of health care experience- will this make lab time faster/easier at least until we get to IVs?

--Almost every instructor mentioned "math fears" or "math weakness" and other negative math-related thoughts. I didn't like this. I have taken two Math for Nurses classes within a year and a half and should be competent but I still worry and it doesn't help when people say to "brush up on algebra and fractions." Algebra, really? My engineer fried said, "Algebra can be applied to almost any situation." As I writer, I replied, "You're an engineer."

--Our uniforms are: 1. fitted 2. uncomfortable 3. do not have enough pockets
Why no pants with pockets? And we are expected to carry our stethoscopes, pen lights, pens, bandage scissors and notebooks in the two front pockets on the scrub top

--25% of my class are men. Kudos to them. More men are always needed. To lift things and manage difficult ED situations.

--An instructor actually said, "I suggest you find a way to get your stress under control." If everyone in the U.S. could do that, imagine how lovely it would be. Like Sweden or Norway. All calm. Would there be less competition?