life, uni

Finished first year of uni

admin / December 16, 2018
girl 3718526 1920 - Finished first year of uni

On 9th December 2018, I completed my first year of university and all I have left is an OSCE resit in January. I have 8 weeks off before I return for second year (if I return).

My first assessed placement didn’t end too badly, I ended up having to go in the day after I finished to get my paperwork signed of, I was just glad to be finished with the place.

My second assessed placement was much better, the mentor I spent most of my time with was utter crap but my other mentor and everyone else were great. The placement provided me with lots of learning experiences and I’m really happy with how my year ended. 

I feel I have developed over the year, I just have to wait for results the board meets this week!

From now on I am working as much as possible before I return, I am only on a bank flexi contract now so I can fit work around placements much easier. 

This first year was easy compared to what lies ahead. 

life, uni

Half way through placement # 3

admin / September 2, 2018
cartoon nursing student asking questions - Half way through placement # 3

So far I have been on my placement for 3 weeks with 4 weeks left. I’ve worked with my mentor 3 times (all early shifts) and don’t appear to have a buddy mentor, though I have worked with one nurse a lot. 

I’m not sure what to make of this placement or how I am going to make up lost hours. They appear to think I need to work with my mentor 80% of the time when it really should be 40%. The only time I’m supervised is when it involved drugs, but I’ve only given them out twice.

I do the admission paperwork alone then they check and counter sign, I take out cannulas alone, I escort to theatre and x-ray alone and I’m expected to make my own arrangements to work in different areas. I went down to outpatients the other afternoon as there was nothing to do on the ward and there was nothing to do in outpatients, I’m not sure I really want to do a whole day there. I been told that my working is affecting what I can do on placement and that they really don’t usually give students a Saturday shift, they just so happen to have gave given me two?!. Fridays are their busy/interesting theatre days but they are days I usually work. I have managed to get 2 Fridays off which is good. They have ‘concerns’ about me travelling and me also working but they don’t actually express them to me. 

I have loads of competencies that need signing off but no one has seen me cover them. Also if I am lead to believe by uni, that we need to do 37.5 hrs weeks / 750 hrs in first year, then I need to make up 58 hrs during my next placement. Everything I read says 700 hours as it’s 800 in years 2+3 totalling 2300 overall. The NMC requires student nurses to work no less than 2300 hours, our student handbook states 700 hours, out unit information states both 700 & 800 but uni tutors say 37.5 hours a week or 750 hours in year 1. I’ve emailed the placement team to clarify as it’s going to mean 4 long days most weeks in my last placement to make those hours up, if they let me. It’s my fault for taking a holiday during placement time but why the increase in required hours. I still say it’s 700 hours!

life, uni

My 1st day at placement # 3

admin / August 28, 2018
20180828 043512 Edited - My 1st day at placement # 3

I got up at 4:30 am to get the train at 5:24! I had to be at placement for 7 am and arrived at 6:30 am

20180828 063202 Edited - My 1st day at placement # 3

My latest placement is at the private hospital Nuffield Health. It’s the first time I’ve done anything private, I’ve always been NHS.

There were 2 nurses + 2 hca’s in the morning and 2 nurses + 1 hca in the afternoon, with only 1 inpatient and 5 (I think) coming in as day cases or overnight. I found it very routine and I can only describe it as an admissions unit. Patient comes in, you go through admission and pre ob questions, do a set of obs, ask them to get changed, do pre ob medication  and wait for them to go down. You then escort them down and bring them back up. If they are day cases then you do 3 sets of obs 30 mins apart and once they are ready to go home you go through discharge questions and send them on their way. If they are staying in you do their medication.

I was told that it was a quiet day but a good one to start on. During the shift, I escorted patients to theatre and back, did obs, and sat around quite a bit. I was able to leave at 6 pm.

20180828 182111 Edited - My 1st day at placement # 3
20180828 180945 1 e1535896110358 - My 1st day at placement # 3

On the way home there happened to be a hot air bollon on the next food field.  I watched if for a short while but really needed to get my train home. I arrived at the station to just miss a train and then realising the trains were messed up and either delayed or cancelled. I ended up having to travel to Littlehampton and then get the train to Worthing. Due to the train issues the train I was on decided to cancel some of their station stops so I ended up getting of at Worthing rather than West Worthing. It wasn’t that big a deal but all in all it took me 2 hours from leaving placement to get home!

Back there tomorrow, here’s to leaving early again 😉 

uni

Uni: Placement number 3

admin / August 18, 2018
Nuffield Health.jpg.gallery - Uni: Placement number 3

So I start my 3rd placement the week starting 27th August for 7 weeks. This will be my 1st private placement. It turns out that they aren’t funny about my wanting to do long days and I won’t be doing any Sundays as they really don’t do anything that day, in fact not much at all all weekend. 

I currently only have the 1st two weeks of shifts, 1st week I’ll be there Tuesday + Wednesday + Saturday, the 2nd week Monday + Tuesday + Wednesday. I’ll actually be on holiday for nearly 3 weeks so I’ll only be there 4 weeks out of 7.

I also need to make up hours at work as I’m currently working 19 hours a week but getting paid for 23. This could prove difficult.

How do other people other there survive uni + placements + work?

fitness, life, uni

Life: Trying to balance everything

admin / August 13, 2018
hqdefault - Life: Trying to balance everything

Sometime it can be hard to balance everything going on in your life, I haven’t gotten it figured out just yet. How do you balance everything?

For me I have work + uni + fitness + lazyness

Work

I have a 23 hour a week contract but only work 19 hours, the missing hours need to be caught up on at some point, 5 weeks equals 10 hours so 2 days. This can be difficult as I don’t work weekends or bank holidays. 

With a 1 hr plus commute and being on call on Thursdays I have very little time those evenings. I can sometimes get off work early on Fridays and maybe I’ll meet my partner for drinks in Brighton. 

I basically write off work days as just that work.

Uni

I go to uni Monday + Tuesday all day and Wednesday half days. Sometimes I finish early on Mondays & Tuesdays too. I start back at uni February 2019 and I’m there for 4 weeks before I start placements.

Placements

This can be any day of the week, but only 3 days unless I need to make up hours. 

Fitness

This is the hardest one to fit in with the rest, that and I can be very lazy at times 😉 I fit in a gym session before uni and on days when I’m not at uni/placement/work etc 

So where does this leave me?

I haven’t figured this out yet. I need to write everything in a diary/calendar. I want to try and fit in 3 sessions a week unless I’m in a lazy mood. I can fit gym sessions in before uni but not before work and on my free days. Fitting in anything at other times can be tricky and fitting in Crossfit is another matter. Crossfit isn’t close enough to a train station or at convenient times for me to go before uni so I have resigned myself to go Wednesday evenings and weekends when at uni and weekends & any free day when at placement.

It;s going to be hard but I’m sure I can work things out and remember to listen to my body and take rest days.

life, uni

My time at uni so far….

150ml 5.07oz - My time at uni so far....

I have been at uni for 4 months now so feel it’s about time for an update.

Our first week there for all induction, info on course + modules + tutors etc, we got down to business the second week. We are only there Monday – Thursday so I have been able to keep my job, though I will be leaving it soon (more to come later).

In the first year we have the following modules:

  • Foundations Of Nursing Knowledge
  • Foundations Of Nursing Practice
  • Human Anatomy And Physiology For Nursing
  • Nursing Assessment Skills
  • Person Centred Practice

By far the hardest module is Human Anatomy And Physiology For Nursing. I find it the most interesting but also the hardest 🙁 We have four 1 hr online exams for this module, thankfully mostly multiple choice. I’m not doing any current revision as yet as I am concentrating on my other modules.

Very early on everyone broke into social groups, most people are local, but there are a few of us that have to travel some distance. There are/were 24 people in our co-hort, so a nice small group, we have since been joined by 6 (I think) students from the co-hort before us. they either needed to make up placement hours + failed a module or failed part of a module. You fail the year if you fail 60 + credits. Some are retaking Foundations Of Nursing Practice (they failed either hours or assignments), some are retaking that plus Nursing Assessment Skills and some just Nursing Assessment Skills. We have also lost one student you gave up and one student who is pregnant so isn’t allowed to do placements, therefore she is doing her placements with the September co-hort and will be in the year below us.

We have so far only handed in two assignments. One was a 1000 word report for Foundations Of Nursing Knowledge the other was a presentation that was recorded! We should be getting our marks back any day now. We have a presentation due in in July (as well as anatomy) but our main focus right now is placements.

Placements have been another thing entirely. There were many an issue for some people. I pick Portsmouth uni due to the placement area i.e Worthing, but all my placements this year are in Bognor or Chichester. When I queried this, as it turns out you stay in that area/hospital the full 3 years, they were surprised as I live in Worthing and asked if I’d be interested in Brighton. No difference in travel but a much bigger hospital, so I said yes. As far I haven’t heard anything, so either nothing will happen or it will change for next year. I was expecting to get a nursing home placement 5 min walk from my house but that hasn’t happen, maybe next year.

Other people had much bigger issue than me, some couldn’t get in touch with anyone, some had their placement taken away and some didn’t even know where they were going to start with. We start placements next week and have two 3 week placements with our OSCEs the week between them!

More on placements + OSCEs to follow.