Posted: August 2nd, 2022
· Weekly Articles & Possible Future Improvements
St. Thomas University
Nursing Research & Evidence-Based Practice
Professor K. Price
January 25, 2022
Weekly Articles & Possible Future Improvements
I had the pleasure of interviewing one of my classmates for this week’s assignment. This classmate is a new nurse, who joined the nursing field at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. He was surprised at the day to day responsibilities nurses have. He has faced challenges with the staffing shortages, high patient ratios, and the gravity of illness COVID-19 patients experience. Treating patients with this illness has caused nurses increased stress and feelings of guilt over our failure to stop their rapid deterioration (Curtis, L., 2020). My classmate explained how he truly values and loves his job but is disappointed by how people show little to no gratitude for our work, especially during these challenging times. He explained his dismay over how people no longer see us as the healthcare heroes they once did, when the pandemic first started. He stated “now no one cares, as they believe in XYZ’s conspiracy theory regarding the government, vaccination, healthcare professionals, and the virus itself. In the past, human tragedy usually sparks a scientific revolution, but in this case, it feels like we’re moving backward” (Y. Conde, personal communication, January 25, 2022).
When I asked him about his thoughts on the articles he has been reading for our weekly assignments, he was pleased to say how helpful they have been to his growth as a new nurse. He particularly enjoyed the article by Abdi, M. et al. (2021), which speaks to the quality of care in nursing and the need for professional development. He stated he has implemented what he learned from this article and has since begun to ask more questions to his patients and the providers. He states in doing so, he has been able to understand his patients better and understand the reasoning behind the providers’ orders. His goal is to further his knowledge of patient care, in order to better help his patients. He also shared that the weekly discussions and posts by our other classmate have helped him as well. He stated, “week after week, I learn something different regarding the nursing field and my colleague’s collective experiences” (Y. Conde, personal communication, January 25, 2022).
I agree with my classmate, in regards to always asking questions and applying critical thinking when executing orders from providers. I too have always asked many questions of my patients and providers and, in doing so, it has helped me tremendously to grow my knowledge. I advised him to continue asking questions and growing his knowledge and experiences so that one day, years from now, he will look back and he will be surprised by how much growth and knowledge he has gained.
In closing our interview, Y. Conde explained how the pandemic has been a stressor for us all and how he one day hopes to practice nursing like it use to be, before the pandemic. He stated “Many of the senior nurses tell tales of times when staffing wasn’t an issue, and the normal patient load was much smaller, and all I can hope for is to get back to those times” (Y. Conde, personal communication, January 25, 2022).
Abdi, M., Khademi, E., Saeidi, M., Piri, S., & Mohammadian, R. (2021). Emotional intelligence and quality of nursing care: A need for continuous professional development. Iranian Journal of Nursing and Midwifery Research, 26(4), 361. https://doi.org/10.4103/ijnmr.ijnmr_268_19
Curtis, L. (2020). A nurse’s story: My life in A&E during the Covid Crisis. Pan.
St. Thomas University
January 27, 2022
This week I was fortunate enough to interview my colleague Jennifer Vanessa Bandin and ask her a bit of what she has learned from her experience in nursing. Jennifer is currently an Emergency Department Nurse who has almost seven years of experience in bedside and charge nursing. What stood out most to me is how much this pandemic has affected her in the ED as it has affected me on the floor. Often as telemetry or medical-surgical nurses, we forget that the style of nursing and priorities shift depending on the department. Although the ED has a revolving door of patients as opposed to the same patient day after day, the pandemic has increased the staffing issues and patient acuity hospital-wide. In her experience, she has found two separate topics she is currently facing as a nurse. The first is how to reduce nurse burnout, and the latter is how to increase beneficial patient outcomes with oxygen supplementation and COVID19 related pneumonia.
Because they have over five years of experience at the bedside, it is safe to say that Jennifer has had her fair share of moments where they have felt overwhelmed and stressed. According to Mudallal et al., they are some of the highest contributors to nursing burnout alongside patient demographic. In Jennifer’s experience, the staffing shortages, working extra shifts, increase in work hours, and higher patient ratios have catalyzed to increase nursing burnout. Many nurses, like myself, entered the field at the start of the pandemic not knowing what to expect. I have faced those exact problems, and I have personally seen many of my coworkers resign or leave for travel nursing. Jennifer believes that increasing monetary incentives for staff nurses could be the most attractive solution in long-term nurse retention, which I wholeheartedly agree with. As a staff nurse, I constantly see travel nurses fixing staffing shortages, knowing full well that those individuals are probably making double to triple what I am being compensated, which makes me want to do the same.
“I suspected that earlier treatment with oxygen could keep a patient from needing mechanical ventilation, helping lower the risk of death” (J. Bandin, personal communication, January 26, 2022). I enjoyed this quote from Jennifer since it embodies the nursing field so elegantly and defines evidence-based practice. As an experienced nurse, Jennifer was able to identify treatment regimens that worked throughout many patient encounters, which led her to hypothesize this. The science field is made up of these hypotheses that need to be evaluated. Di Domenico et al. explored the clinical outcomes of 310 COVID19 patients that were initially treated with oxygen supplementation in the ED and followed their results. The study showed that out of those 319 patients, 269 were admitted, and only 24 of them were admitted to the ICU. The study also showed that patients that did not go to ICU or needed transfer to intensive care were more likely to recover and surpass the disease, with patients 60 years of age and lower having a mortality rate of sub-10-percent. Out of 8 variable comorbidities, the highest correlation to mortality was chronic kidney disease and diabetes. The study also showed that 100-percent of patient deaths were due to respiratory failure secondary to COVID19 related pneumonia, and the patients that required the least amount of oxygen supplementation were at greater odds of survival.
Bandin, Jennifer Vanessa. (2022). Personal Communication.
Di Domenico, S. L., Coen, D., Bergamaschi, M., Albertini, V., Ghezzi, L., Cazzaniga, M. M., … & Strozzi, M. A. (2020). Clinical characteristics and respiratory support of 310 COVID-19 patients, diagnosed at the emergency room: A single-center retrospective study. Internal and Emergency Medicine, 16, 1-10. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11739-020-02548-0
Mudallal, R. H., Othman, W. M., & Al Hassan, N. F. (2017). Nurses’ burnout: The influence of leader empowering behaviors, work conditions, and demographic traits. INQUIRY: The Journal of Health Care Organization, Provision, and Financing, 54, 004695801772494. https://doi.org/10.1177/0046958017724944
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