You develop such a strong bond with people because they put so much trust and faith in you to keep them safe and to be the one guiding them through this whole process. It’s a really huge honor that people allow me to take care of them in that way.
When I was in high school my grandma got really sick with Alzheimer's and advanced age dementia, and she had to go live in a couple of different nursing homes. I would see the quality of the care that she was getting, and it wasn’t necessarily because of the nurses themselves—I thought that they were all wonderful—but there was just such a shortage of them. And as a result, the patients suffered neglect. I was like, things could be better, people can be really well taken care of. And that was what gave me the push to start thinking about nursing.
Why I love being an Obstetrics and Gynecology Nurse
Tiffany, BSN, RN, CLC, RNC- MNN, explains being an Obstetrics and Gynecology Nurse is the best.
I work primarily in OB/GYN.
What a typical work shift is like for me
When I go to work one of the first responsibilities that I have as a nurse is to do our daily checklists of protocols, make sure that there are no expired supplies on the unit, and make sure that everything is where it should be. We run all the tests.
Then our first patients usually arrive around 7:30. So I will respond to patient emails and calls that have come through for the physicians. We are the first stop before it goes to them so that way we can take care of as much work as is easy to answer, particularly with patient counseling and advice. And then I just kind of bop back and forth between doing that and seeing the patients in the rooms. My shift goes until about 3:00 o’clock.
My innovation story
We put together this committee that every time a fall would happen, we would go back from the beginning from the moment that the patient walked into the hospital. We would look through the chart, chart the course of the labor, and see what medication she was given. What time did the fall occur? In what setting? Was the patient feeding? Was she sitting down? Was she in her bed? And then we started to put the pieces of the puzzle together.
What that led to is us redesigning our patient beds, particularly on the postpartum unit when falls were more prone to happen. The new beds had four side rails that were completely closed off. So if a mother was to fall asleep while breastfeeding her newborn and the baby happened to fall out of the arms, the baby wasn't really going to go anywhere.
We also worked with the physicians to space out the amount of time we were giving narcotics to patients—making it every six hours instead of every four, and alternating that with pain relievers. That way they could still get quick pain relief, but not necessarily need to be on those hard-hitting medications.
We actually wrote a protocol that still exists at our hospital that I think others have modeled, which is really an honor.
I try to take at least one day a week to make sure that I’m really dedicating to self-care and allowing that day to be just for myself, to sort of restore.”