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First clinical?

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by Allie33 Allie33 (New) New

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So I'm starting my clinicals on Tuesday at a Long Term Care Facility and I am beyond nervous for it. Obviously because it's my first time and I don't know what to really expect for the first couple of clinical shifts.

I've worked in a healthcare before, in food service at a nursing home, but I could only do so much for the residents. Now that I'll be able to do more, I'm so nervous. Any advice? That would be greatly appreciated.

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10 Posts; 791 Profile Views

Ah, I remember my first clinical at a LTC. My best advice for you is to keep an open mind, help as much as possible and don't shy away from talking to the residents. I'm assuming your first clinical rotation is for gerontology, hence the LTC. During this rotation, you'll be learning and doing a lot of work that the CNAs do, not so much as the RNs. When I was in this clinical last year, we did all CNA work because the RNs only pass meds (which we did too, but it depends on how comfortable your clinical instructor is about that). I kinda considered this as the semester where I learned the "dirty" work of nursing (bathing patients, wiping, dressing, etc) and this is the semester you will learn to help pts with their ADLs (activities of daily living). You may be dressing a pt, helping to bathe a pt, oral care for a pt, etc. There's a lot to do in a LTC, especially in the mornings, so be prepared to help!

You will encounter great CNAs/RNs, and you may encounter ones that are not so great. They may show you a technique that you would want to use yourself later on, and they may do something that you will question. Just like the real world, there's a good and a bad. Just keep your mind open to how things are run at a LTC, because it can be different from a hospital setting, but know the difference between what's different and what's wrong. Unfortunately, during my rotation, we saw some CNAs providing horrible quality of care to the patients, which we actually reported to the manager....If you see something that you questions or are uncomfortable with, don't be afraid to talk to your clinical instructor - they are there to help you!

Talk to the residents. Get to know them. My god, if people really realize just how lonely some of the residents can be. During my rotation, there were a handful of residents who never had visitors, so just imagine how much they lit up when we interacted with them. It broke my heart when I saw this, so my group tried to be extra social with them. You may be the first person they have talked to in days or even weeks. A lot of them also came from interesting backgrounds and had great stories to share :)

Don't be nervous. Have fun, learn a lot, and absorb all you can! Clinical is where the real fun begins outside of the simulation lab :)

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