Assignment 1: The Case That Defined Me as a Nurse
As a nurse, I have always had a special interest in perinatal care. As a nurse, perinatal loss is dear to my heart, because you are able to make a difference in a patient’s life in the time they need it most. The case that is most memorable to me is the first case of full term demise that I encountered. The mother was an 18-year-old first time mother who went into her 39-week appointment and discovered that the fetus had no heartbeat. Following the discovery, she was sent over to my unit to begin her induction. During the entirety of my shift, I labored with her, and she delivered to me on my next shift. Throughout the process, she received no pain medication or support from friends or family. The one thing that I cannot forget is her sobbing and screaming during delivery, and her cries of sadness that she did not want to push and have her baby really gone. This was the first case where I could not hold it together in a patient’s room. Both myself and the doctor, who was also a new mother, cried with this 18-year-old girl all night. In the end, we had a successful delivery, and as the baby had only recently passed, we were able to bathe her, dress her, and obtain memoriums. As the mother required a lot of emotional support following the procedure, my manager allowed me to keep her as a one-on-one patient that night. I spent a lot of time talking with her in her room, and holding the baby as she slept, because she did not want it left alone in the bereavement bassinet. It was a very emotional night, and to this day, the thought of it makes me sad. . [“Write my essay for me?” Get help here.]
This case still affects me in my day-to-day dealings with patients because it was a clear lesson in sensitive patient care. I learned how to hold myself together when with an emotional patient, both for the patient’s wellbeing, as well as my own. In addition to this, I learned important coping mechanisms to impart onto patients to make their loss easier to deal with. In bathing and dress the baby, the mother was better able to say goodbye to her child. While this was difficult for me to do, it made it a lot easier for the mother, and allowed her to obtain closure. This also affects my practice because it taught me to teach others similar protocols for dealing with emotional patients. In teaching others what I learned about understanding and sensitivity, we are able to provide more effective care to our patients overall, improving both the experience of our patients, as well as ourselves.
In overcoming the stress of this event, I took a holistic approach. Within the practice we have stress management programs and regular staff meetings and discussions to communicate feelings, gain support, and share innovative ideas to relieve stress (Managing Stress, 2016). I make sure to regularly attend these meetings so that I am able to relieve my own stress, help to relieve the stress of others, and improve the quality of care that I am able to provide to patients. In addition to this, after traumatic or difficult events, I make sure to take advantage of the available counselling services, for non-judgmental support of the issues I am facing. Further, I take on my own approaches such as relaxation and physical exercises to relieve any stress I may be facing (Managing Stress, 2016). Specifically, I attend yoga classes in my free time, as well as keeping a journal to allow me to express private feelings. The use of yoga postures, controlled breathing, relaxation, meditation, and nutrition allows me to release muscular and emotional tension, improve concentration, increase oxygen levels in my blood, and assist my body in healing itself (Descriptions of Healing Modalities , 2016). In addition to this, keeping a journal that explores my thoughts and feelings allows me to clarify them, and through this, allows me to gain valuable self-knowledge (Journaling: What is it?, 2016). Rather than releasing my feelings to other people, I find that journaling allows me the time to examine events that happen in my own life, put them into perspective, and allow me to deal with their consequences or come up with solutions and coping mechanisms (Journaling: What is it?, 2016). Through utilizing these stress-relief techniques, I am able to better manage the effects of traumatic and emotional events such as the one described above. This allows me to be a more effective and efficient nurse, who can be empathetic with patients, while still being able to cope with it in my own time. . [Need an essay writing service? Find help here.]
The Importance of Debriefings
Medical debriefings are a form of retrospective analysis of critical incidents and how they have been handled by the nurses and doctors involved with them. It is utilized as a critical incident stress-reduction technique that includes structured stages of group discussions (Cant & Cooper, 2010). They have also been found to enhance skills and improve the quality of patient care in clinical settings (Cant & Cooper, 2010). Through this, they have been identified as an important method of teaching, learning, and stress relief in medical-related environments (Cant & Cooper, 2010).
Debriefings are often held after significant events, such as difficult resuscitations or mass casualty incidents. Debriefings were initially developed as a concept for the military, where they would be held after missions to allow leadership to develop better strategies going forward, and to allow soldiers to have a chance to talk about the situations they had to deal with (Price, 2015). These concepts are utilized during debriefings in clinical settings, where they can be held to review the event, discuss how the staff responded, and decide if better strategies could be implemented in the future (Price, 2015). This allows for the medical staff to discuss their response retrospectively, without the active stress that plagued them during the incident. This can grant staff a better understanding of how they responded, and how they can better plan out and communicate responses in the future. The debriefings themselves often contain a review of the events that transpired, as well as the response of all team members involved. The presence of debriefings is not primarily to identify mistakes that were made, but to provide an honest review of what occurred, and what may help the team’s performance in the future (Cant & Cooper, 2010). Another important reason for the presence of debriefings is to provide nurses and doctors with a means to talk about the feelings they experience in high-pressure events, and to help them work through their emotional responses (Cant & Cooper, 2010). Through getting things off their chest and talking to others who understand them, nurses and doctors can relieve the stress they feel after emotional hospital incidents, and allow them to return to their everyday lives without lasting anxieties about what occurred.
Debriefings are frequently used within my workplace when potentially emotional or stressful incidents occur. These events may include things such as mass causality incidents, difficult or unsuccessful resuscitations, or the death of vulnerable individuals, such as children or infants. These debriefings are used both as a way for employees, such as nurses and doctors, to discuss their feelings, as well as to identify ways in which processes could be improved in the future. Within these debriefings, all staff involved within the incident, including nurses, doctors, students, and reception staff, will be involved to discuss how the event was handled. In addition to the facilitator and those involved in the incident, support workers such as counselors, social workers, and religious figures may present themselves at the debriefings. In cases where these individuals are present, they may be there either to discuss clinical aspects of the incident, or to play a role in the emotional aspect of the debriefing (Pivec, 2011). Particularly, in incidents where death has occurred, support workers can help suggest ideas for staff to deal with the stress and emotional issues that are a part of witnessing tragic events. These debriefings are often held in open breakrooms, or private meeting rooms, depending upon the size of the group. Usually, the rules of the debriefing are first discussed, to allow participants to understand the process. These rules include the honesty of all parties, and respecting the opinions and feelings of other individuals involved. Within my workplace, debriefings are held by the person who was in charge during the incident. These people may include nursing supervisors, clinical coordinators, or head physicians. < Click Essay Writer to order your essay >
Following the introduction to the debriefing, the facilitator explains what occurred, and what the response of the team was. All facts of the situation are discussed, and all individuals involved will have the chance to share information and participate in the discussion. During this section of the debriefing within my workplace, the individuals present are encouraged to talk both about their physical response to the event, as well as their thoughts and feelings. With the assistance of the facilitator, the staff examines the actions that were taken, what could have been done differently, and what could have improved the patient’s final outcome, particularly in the case of unsuccessful responses, such as resuscitations. Within this phase, the participants in the debriefing are able to ask questions to the facilitator and other individuals, as well as ask for possible ways that they could improve their own responses in the future.
Within my workplace, debriefings are possible to facilitate, and are often utilized to help the hospital manage difficult events, in terms of staff and their responses. These medical debriefings are not individual counselling sessions, but can help medical staff discuss the personal impact of difficult incidents (Pivec, 2011). It also aids managers and supervisors in identifying individuals who may have a more difficult time than others dealing with emotional events (Pivec, 2011). Additionally, debriefings can help those who would normally not seek out counselling, begin to talk about their feelings, and recognize the value in maintaining their emotional wellbeing. While some members of the teams may only rarely encounter stressful or traumatic situations, some staff, such as those who work in the emergency room, or critical care units, may often witness difficult events (Price, 2015). In the case of those who rarely encounter such situations, the after-effects of them can be very traumatic to their psyche. These individuals require such stress-relieving and understanding events such as debriefings in order to move past traumatic incidents and grow from the experience. Similarly, for those who often witness these events, debriefings are important to allow them to express their emotions frequently, rather than allowing them to build up. If nurses and doctors neglect to take care of their emotional health, they are more likely to burn out or become overwhelmed when they face an influx of emotional trauma. Through utilizing the concept of debriefings in clinical settings, nurses and doctors can better learn ways to cope with and understand difficult or traumatic situations, grow from their experiences, and help them to improve the quality of care that they are able to provide to patients.
Assignment 2:Nurse Empowerment
Powerless nurses in the workplace are ineffective ones. Ongoing research in the field has shown that nurses who have been empowered are more likely to be highly motivated and are more likely to be able to motivate and empower others by sharing their sources of power (Manojlovich, 2007). Empowered nurses are less likely to experience burnout and job strain than their un-empowered counterparts in the field (Manojlovich, 2007). To empower my staff, I would host sessions and bring in individuals to discuss leadership and stress-management techniques (Nursing Autonomy and Empowerment, 2016). In addition to this, I would hold debriefings where I would recognize how the efforts of staff members are able to make a difference, and give encouragement to those who could perform in better ways. The empowerment elements within my sphere of control are the effective leadership that I am able to supply, the supportive environment I am able to create, and the professional traits within my staff members that I am able to foster. Through harnessing the sources of power within my nursing unit, including the management, environment, and staff, I could help foster all three of these elements within my workplace. In addition to this, I could help nurses to facilitate more regular schedules and work hours, to reduce stress and encourage healthy lifestyles. The reasons that nurses may feel powerless may include no say in their work schedule, constant exhaustion, and emotional overload. By empowering my staff with the above principles, I could reduce these feelings and decrease staff turnover in the unit.
A recent group project I participated in involved a group of four students in order to create and market a laboratory outreach program. The goal of the project was to create the plan for the project in order to pitch to investors, including a brochure to highlight the details. My role within the group was to outline roles, create the brochure, and edit the final product. The other three group members each took on a specific section, such as finances, marketing, and the overview. While the goal of this project was achieved, it was not easily attained due to a difficult group decision-making processes. The group tended to strongly disagree on decisions such as the services that should be offered, and how the laboratory should have been marketed. To facilitate group decisions, I took a leadership role and created a pro and cons list of all decisions. Once individuals saw the reasoning behind others’ decisions, they were more likely to agree with them. Through doing this, the project was completed on time, and with a satisfactory grade.
Patient Care Delivery System
The patient care delivery system at my work involves working to provide continuous, consistent, and accountable care. The process of organizing patient care involves planning for the needs of the patient, assigning tasks that need to be completing, issuing instructions and coordinating activities, making rounds to the patient following tasks, evaluating all care provided, and the reporting upon the status of the delivery system and patient for the next shift of nurses (KSU, 2010). If I could implement a new care delivery system, I would work to ensure that the patient and their family is more involved in the planning process for their care. As a nurse manager, I would prefer to work with this type of system to both decrease conflict between staff and families, as well as to increase productive care the patient. As a patient, I would also prefer a model I was more involved in, so that my care is better understood by myself and my family. By creating a care delivery system that is more patient-focused, I can ensure that both the staff and the patients are better served by medical care facilities.References:
Cant, R. P., & Cooper, S. J. (2010). The benefits of debriefing as formative feedback in nurse education. Retrieved from AJAN:
Descriptions of Healing Modalities . (2016). (American Holistic Nurses Association)
Journaling: What is it? (2016). (American Holistic Nurses Association)
KSU. (2010). Patient Care Delivery System. Retrieved from KSU:
Managing Stress. (2016). (American Holistic Nurses Association)
Manojlovich, M. (2007). Power and Empowerment in Nursing: Looking Backward to Inform the Future. Retrieved from Online Journal of Nursing:
Nursing Autonomy and Empowerment. (2016). Retrieved from UR Medicine:
Pivec, C. (2011, May). Debriefing after Simulation: Guidelines for Faculty. Retrieved from St. Catherine University:
Price, J. (2015, March 31). What is a Medical Debriefing? Retrieved from Gap Medics: