As a current nursing student and future nurse in healthcare, we have so much emphasis on emergency medical care. The steps of basic life support is one area where critical skills must be accomplished before the time of need. All healthcare providers collaborate with each other in these times that are crucial and every second matters. A few ways I plan to mentally and physically prepare for these life saving techniques are by participating in our simulations. We role play in simulations at our hospital such as a mock code instance and we each have a part to do in making sure this patient is safe and the situation is handled appropriately and in a timely manner. We do debriefings after the simulation to review what went well and what areas we could have improved upon. It is very helpful to hear other students and teachers’ thoughts and reflect on how to make it better each time ahead.
Another way to mentally prepare is to read and keep up with all basic and advanced life support material. We want to stay up to date as new information is released. We also have our renewal every 2 years with a certified instructor on basic life support on infants, children and adults. To review the material with others helps to keep in fresh in our minds and recognize changes if they occur. Continuing education requirements and tests help as well. This tests our memory and how well we can quickly recall what to do in these emergent situations.
Some physical ways to keep up with preparing for these life saving events again are to continue with simulations such as rapid responses and mock codes. We can also practice our CPR skills such as compressions on our simulation mannequin. We have a computer that can show us if we are not going to full depth on compressions or if we are going to slow or fast. Practicing compressions correctly is a big physical factor that helps when we are presented in an actual situation. I think even daily exercises on our own time help with our ability to perform in crisis events. Our stamina must be able to hold up and keep on even when we get exhausted. Walking even 2-3 times a week is something I try to fit into my weekly schedule. Staying healthy helps us to be able to help others easier.
It takes a combination of mentally and physically staying strong in healthcare in theses urgent situations. They take place very quickly and fast response is a must. The response to life saving measures must also be safe and accurate. There is not much room for error in these situations. It takes practicing over and over just like if it were a real situation. We must be ready when the times comes. Communication is a major element in the process as well. If the communication of all those involved is not the best as it should be, then the patient is the one who suffers. Communication must be clear, concise and accurate. When we practice for these situations, we must make sure each person reads back their instructions for the event. Everyone must be on the same page and know their position. It takes fast thinking and teamwork to make these patients safe and prevent further deterioration.
Questions should be asked ahead of time if there is any hesitancy upon their part. Research must be the latest and all healthcare professionals must keep up with the changes. It is a combination of multiple things that make a lifesaving event successful. Time will help also with remembering exactly what occurs and unfolds in these events. The more situations we are put in, the more we learn from them and can improve the next time. Students being taught these things early on is a great practice for them. Many students are entering healthcare for the first time and need the education and practice of such events. Reaching out to others and making sure our mental health is extremely important after these events as well. Several nurses may choose to push these emotions to the side or ignore them. Even if it is a “routine” part of healthcare, our providers must have selfcare. We need to check our on fellow healthcare providers and make sure they are not dealing with certain emotions from these events. Keeping each other in optimal health mentally and physically first is important for us to be able to give the care needed to others.