A clinical experience for a student nurse

Yesterday, I had the pleasure of having a student with me in the Electrophysiology Lab.

I do not often get students, because naturally they are looking after patients on inpatient nursing units.  Electrophysiology isn’t even on the radar, and most licensed nurses really have no idea what we do, so the students know even less.  Because the student’s patient was having a pacemaker placed, I got to take him to the lab.

I immediately informed him that I LOVED students and he would be having an excellent day.  I am sure that he didn’t believe me.1336717834477_2589151

He was pleasantly surprised (shocked as heck) that I got him scrubs, had him dress out, and brought him into the lab to observe the patient’s procedure. He thought he was going to have to hang out in the control room, not 3 feet behind the physician’s right shoulder.

He was encouraged to ask questions, and our physician explained the clinical reasoning for this particular treatment to the student.  I explained some things about sterile fields, radiation safety, infections, etc.  I asked him questions about what he would be looking for after the procedure, and he asked really relevant questions after we built on his knowledge.  I feel like he will be the new grad who is able to identify a pocket hematoma, and other situations that require a call to a physician.electrophysiology

So much fun! I love to see the light bulbs come on when they ‘get’ a concept.

Even better, I got to show him our safe patient handling equipment, and to talk to him about why he should not manually move patients.  The conversation went like this:

Janie: “How old are you?”

Student: “twenty-five”

Janie: “I am forty four.  All of my lumbar discs are bulging or herniated and I am in pain most of the time. Do not manually move patients unless absolutely necessary. OSHA is cracking down on hospitals that do not provide patient handling equipment. Because you are a guy, you will be called twice as often to move patients manually. Most nurses are injured while laterally transferring a patient or pulling them up in bed. Do not do it without the right equipment, or this will be you in 20 years.”

Student: “Whoa! Thanks!”enhanced-21683-1394583643-2

So, a basic lesson in electrophysiology.  A note about safe patient handling. A fun, inclusive clinical experience, and a warm welcome from our whole team.

This is what it is all about.  

Make them love it before they start.  And let them know that advocating for themselves is expected.

Connect, Engage, Advocate, Unify.  Does that sound familiar?

Show them your Stethoscope.



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Author Janie Garner

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