Sheridan has recently completed a 7 week placement at our St Julia’s Hospice as part of her 2-year Nurse Associate programme. She kindly shared the following about her experience with us;
St Julia’s Hospice was a breath of fresh air, they are actively invested in the role, they are forward thinking in their approach to staff training and I had many learning opportunities whilst I was there.
I was able to attend the Advanced Care Planning training day and learnt a lot from this. My normal role is within the Community Nursing team, so we provide a lot of palliative and end of life care. The Advanced Care Planning training is completely transferable to the community setting and I will be championing this when I go back to my team.
I was able to gain lots of experience with medications, this was particularly valuable to me, as previous placements are busy environments and it can be very difficult to get adequate time for gaining experience in medication rounds. The Registered Nurses at St Julia’s were able to observe my practice and supervise me giving medications, whilst adhering to NMC (2018) guidelines and Standards for Nurse Associates. I felt I learnt a lot about medications given to patients who need help with symptom control, this will also stand me in good stead when I go back to my Community Nursing team, when I finally become a registered Nurse Associate, I will be much more involved with palliative and end of life care.
What I absolutely loved was the level of care and support St Julia’s is able to give to patients and family, there is a truly person-centred, holistic approach to care. I had not Previously had much experience in palliative and end of life care, but always felt very passionately about this side of care. It is very sad when a patient passes away, but for me it was an honour to be part of a person’s final hours of life and give the care they needed. I feel much more confident now when giving this care and knowledgeable about what we as health professionals can do for the patient but also the family. The bereavement counselling is such an important part of the service offered by St Julia’s and I saw how helpful this can be, the patient was fully supported and family/carers were followed up following a bereavement. St Julia’s is a full support package in one place, and I love that!
The whole team were so welcoming and friendly, they are absolutely amazing. Because I have seen how St Julia’s care for people in line with their wishes and preferences, and the level of care they give, I wanted to do something to help because it aligns with my own values towards patient care. I spent the whole summer fundraising for St Julia’s and have raised £575, with the support of Sister Lou Ranford and staff I am going to buy items they have suggested will be of great benefit.
To sum up I did not want to leave.