What does a student do if they are sick?

Nursing Students Pre-Nursing


Ok, so nursing school this fall. Im kinda worried about how sick I get. Usually I get sick 4-5 times a year... As of the last several months my symptoms seem to have been much more milder when I do get sick. But the last 3 weeks I got slammed with a bacterial infection from hell, and now I'm on my 3rd round of antibiotics.

Well I guess my question is, if I get slammed with another infection from hell. What is recommended. I know taking time off and or delaying with studies is impossible.

What do we do?

Specializes in LTC/Rehab, ICF/MR, Mental Health.

Whenever I was sick I came to class and clinicals and let my instructor know how I was feeling, if I had a fever etc. Usually if I wasn't contagious they gave me easier duties that night. If I was contagious they'd send me home but wouldn't count it as an absence because I did show up. I went in with pink eye once and did most of the computer stuff for my classmates. It depends on the instructor but I always made it a point of attempting to go.

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Approach your instructor and let them make the decision on whether you can stay or not when it comes to clinical. You do not want to be the one to initiate staying home if it could mean the difference between remaining in the program and being eliminated for too many absences. At this point, you would not know if the instructor would find a way for you to remain on the floor or not. If you stay home, you won't get credit for showing up.

Specializes in Critical Care, Med-Surg, Psych, Geri, LTC, Tele,.

I agree with what Caliotter said. I would attend and be ready to stay but also let the instructor or preceptor know what is going on. I got really sick a few years ago while taking a pretty intense summer school classes and working and being under a lot of stress at home.

Now, I take better care to prevent illness. I believe in natural and holistic remedies and do things like: 1) pay attention to my body so I notice before I get super sick. 2) drink lots of water and get lots of rest when I am starting to feel under the weather.

Specializes in Complex pedi to LTC/SA & now a manager.

Unless of course you are knowingly contagious with a reportable disease such as pink eye, strep throat, chicken pox, sustained high fever of greater than 101.5F (especially if it remains high when taking Tylenol or ibuprofen), continuous vomiting/diarrhea... get a physicians note and contact your instructor rather than exposing your classmates and patients to a contagious illness. Especially the patients who may already be in an immune compromised state. Depending on your history, you may be asked to present yourself for the instructor to see that you are in fact ill or simply told to stay home and present a physician's clearance when you return.

A former student elected to show up on the maternity/nursery clinical rotation with active, not-yet-treated pink eye and a suspicious skin rash that turned out to be infectious even after her PCP wrote a note excluding her until after 24-48 hours of abx treatment...it was a huge deal with the nursing staff, facility and school as we almost lost our clinical placement for putting patients, especially newborns at risk.

Do your best to stay healthy, eat right, exercise, get enough rest, do your best to stay ahead of your studies, be respectful and develop a good rapport with your instructors and classmates.

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