I remember what it felt like when I got my nursing pin. I remember my first day of clinical and my very first patient. I remember that feeling I got in the pit of my stomach when a code was called. Mixing IV fluids, doing divided doses for narcotics on paper and having another nurse sign off on my math. Mixing chemotherapy (usually methotrexate) and doing narcotic count at the end of every shift. Adding up I and O's manually. Calibrating IV burettes every hour or sooner. I remember the first patient I had that died, a child and I wasn't even 20 yet myself. I remember having a patient with a fever and rash admitted on Friday and when I came back to work on Monday that eight year old was deaf and brain damaged from measles.
I remember thinking that we were practicing the most scientific and advanced level of nursing care, with the most sophisticated equipment. And back over 40 years ago, we were. If someone had asked me then, what would nursing look like 40 years in the future,...
NP's are struggling to keep up with continuing education, CE as we are constantly learning to improve our skills. Most CE is offered in large chunks at single or multi day live conferences. It's like being force fed an incredible amount of information. How much do you remember? How much do you apply to your practice? Are most of your CE programs clinical information? What about learning to improve communication, learning, empathy, compassion and avoiding burnout? Can learning new things outside your role, your job, your organization and even your profession make you a better, more fulfilled NP? Can this type of knowledge bring fresh perspective and help improve patient care?
Professionalism goes beyond nursing knowledge. It stretches to self improvement, self awareness, and improved listening and communication skills. It results in better leadership skills. To live life to the fullest, we must...
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