NUR 4010 FA 2013

As my community nursing course comes to an end, one of the required assignments was to write a self reflection of my growth and feelings towards my experience during clinical. With this being said, I hope you all get a good idea of how my experience was, and my feelings towards the whole experience.

I must start off by saying that the clinical for community nursing is one of my favorite experiences that I’ve had through out my nursing education. I say this because I was able to work with seniors on a level that I’ve never with them on before. Fundamentals of nursing clinical was the first and last clinical rotation interaction that I had with seniors up until now. In the clinical for fundamentals of nursing I was in a nursing home with very frail, sick, and hospice elderly patients. The clinical for community exposed me to very live, active, and positive seniors and it shined a new positive light on how I view them as a whole.

Objective 1: Demonstrates individual professionalism through personal behaviors and

appearance.

During my clinical rotation at the SeniorSteinCenter, I strongly believe that I maintained professionalism through my personal behaviors and appearance. Just as I would maintain client confidentiality in a hospital, clinic, or nursing home, I maintained it in the SteinCenter. Just as longs as the senior’s health wasn’t at risk, for example a high blood pressure, all information shared with me stayed with me. I went into clinical each eager and prepared to learn, and I assumed responsibility for my own learning.

My clinical professor had provided us with blue books to keep as journals from the first day of clinical and we were told to make a journal entry each clinical, which I did faithfully. We also had to present topics to the seniors that we felt pertained to them. My group’s presentation was about home safety was done on time, we were actually the group to volunteer and go first. We received great feedback from our professor. Our professor was very approachable, so I never hesitated to ask her for her opinion or guidance. I also enjoyed participating in our discussions during clinical. Although the clinical site was a distance from where I live, I made it my business to attend clinical the appropriate time and made sure that I dressed professionally. I love dressing up so that part was extremely easy and fun for me to do.

Objective 2: Employ analytical reasoning and critical thinking skills when providing

care to individuals and families in the community setting.

When it came to employing analytical reasoning and critical thinking skills at the senior center, there wasn’t much opportunity to do so because this clinical wasn’t a hands on experience when it cam to the seniors’ health and their care. We did put much thought into our presentations. Yes we took blood pressures, and yes we reached out to the seniors and had ample time to communicate with them but I feel that the associates’ nursing program has clinicals built for us to think critically and apply analytic reasoning. My group members and I did interview many of the seniors when trying to figure out what we were going to do our presentation on. We wanted to get an idea of what their concerns were so that our presentation could truly be beneficial to them.

Objective 3: Effectively communicate with diverse groups and disciplines using a

variety of strategies regarding the health needs of individuals and families in the

community setting.

I feel as thought I was able to communicate appropriately and effectively with the seniors I had conversations with. Some of these seniors actually opened up to me, and shared a lot of their life stories with me. For someone to open up to you and not know you on a personal level, trust is a big part of that. Being a registered nurse and knowing how to communicate effectively allowed some of the seniors to trust me. That gave me an awesome feeling. As mentioned before, my clinical professor was very approachable which made communication between her and I easy. My peers were also respectful and easy to communicate with.

 

Objective 4: Establish environment conducive to learning and use a plan for learners

based on evidence-based practice

The environment at the SteinCenter was welcoming. I can tell by the amount of seniors that go there faithfully that the employees of Stein Senior Center has the seniors in their best interest. Even after having to move locations more than once, they still have a good turn out. There was no hostility among the employees and each person seemed approachable. The support of the employees and the seniors made it possible for my group to build a presentation suitable for them. I feel that our presentation was a learning experience for the seniors that attended, and as well as for my group because of the constructive feedback we got from them. They also expressed the feeling of appreciation because we took the time out to focus on home safety.

Objective 5: Utilize informational technology when managing individual and families in

the community

The fact that the center had a computer lab was pretty awesome. There were seniors that were in the lab faithfully using the computers which I thought was cool because they showed interest in evolving technology of today. The computer can grant you access to a lot of vital information. We used the computer lab to get information for our presentation. There were no electronic medical records involved in this clinical. All information that was shared with me by the seniors was kept confidential if it didn’t cause a health hazard.

 

Objective 6: Demonstrate a commitment to professional development

During clinical I do believe that I demonstrated commitment to professional development. All literature and websites that we used for our presentation were reputable and up to date. It was important for us to use such literature because what good would it have been if we presented information that wasn’t reputable or up to date?  It would not have been useful in our plans of making a well, educational and organized presentation. I think we all assumed responsibility when it came to life long learning, and without this time for me to engage in this self evaluation I don’t think I would really be able to reflect on the many good moments I had during this clinical rotation. I were to pursue my nursing career in community nursing I would most definitely adjust to the many challenges of independent practice in community health nursing.

Objective 7: Incorporate professional nursing standards and accountability into practice

American Nurses Association Standards will always be a reference for me to follow anywhere I go in the nursing field. Whether it be in my education, in a clinical setting, or in my career. From day one, the director of SteinCenter laid out their standards and thoroughly let us know what the SteinCenter was about and how it was developed. I made sure I understood them and I complied with all of their standards. I took full accountability for all of my actions at the center, and I was well aware of the center’s mission.

Objective 8: Collaborate with clients, significant support persons and members of the

health care team

The SteinSeniorCenter has people in charge of different areas. For example, they have someone there to help any of the seniors who go there who have been victims of any crimes. I was shocked to find out that many seniors are victims of identity theft, and domestic violence was another shocking piece of information. They also have people that are in charge of daily activities for the seniors, such as belly dancing.

When it came to collaborating with some of the employees of the center so that our presentation can pull together, it was easy. Since these people are with the seniors on a daily basis and know the crowd, they were able to give us insight on how they are as a group. We also had help with printing out our brochures. They were very helpful when we needed tem. At the end of presentation we provided a list of recommended numbers and gadgets that could be of help to the seniors. One of the things on the list was the med alert system, which is a device that could be worn by seniors and in case of an emergency, and they can’t reach help they can press the button on the device and help would be on its way. This recommendation was vital to our presentation because this is where technology can be very beneficial to seniors, and senior’s are at high risk for falling.

Objective 9: Recognize the impact of economic, political, social and demographic forces

that affect the delivery of health care services

When it comes to me recognizing any political, social and demographic forces that affect the delivery of health care service, I feel like I did. The SteinSeniorCenter is not that big, and I feel as though if it was bigger then they would be able to explain more and accommodate to many more seniors. They also would be able to have more options as far as physical activities for the seniors. I found that a great amount of the seniors who attended there were well aware of their environment and of their health status. If the center had more funding from the government, they would be able to do so much more. It would be nice if there was a nurse and a doctor who on site everyday I feel like this would make the center a little bit more complete. I also think that setting up a kind of service in which people that work in the center would check up on seniors that they don’t hear from. A phone call, or even a home visit to see if they’re ok would be nice because a lot of them live alone still and not around a lot of family member.

Summary

Overall, I feel as though my experience during this clinical was a eye opening one. It also gave me the opportunity to grow as a Registered Nurse. I realize that nursing is such a diverse path and nurses do not only have to stay at the bed-side in hospitals or clinics. Nurses can take their work outside to communities that could really use their help. I love the versatility within nursing. As I continue my education in nursing, I know that I will continue to grow. I love learning about new things, especially when it comes to nursing. This community nursing course has allowed me to step outside of the box and for that, I appreciate it.

 

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