Black Wednesday reared it’s ugly head on our floor!

What a few days does to someones running. Wednesday I could barely run 1 mile but today I ran for 1hr and managed 5 miles! I don’t know why I find running on the treadmill so much easier than outside, maybe it’s the fact that information is right there in front of me and I can adjust the pace whereas outside I never know what pace I’m running, so I run too fast but a slow pace, my pace, barely feels like more than walking.

I now feel I will be able to finish the 10k on 30th August. It will be a slow time but I’m aiming for 1.20hr or less.


So on Wednesday I did a bank shift in outpatients and I now realise why some people like it and some hate it and also why there aren’t many position going/rarely advertised.

I worked 8:30 – 12:30 and I think that was enough for my first shift. I was lucky enough to work with a regular bank staff member, someone who I did my training with. We were working in the urology clinic. There are about 15 rooms which hold clinics each day plus the breast centre. Not all clinics are every day or all day and there is one HCA to a clinic or nurse if there is need for a task we aren’t trained for.  We basically get the room ready for the Dr, lay the forms out on the desk, turn the pc on, get a trolley for patients files, get an obs machine or other machine if the clinic needs it and then wait for the first patient to arrive. Every so often you go to reception to see if there are any files waiting for you, which means the patient has arrived. For urology we would call the patient before the Dr is ready for them to get a urine sample and have them sit back down. We would then call the patient in. Some clinics will measure their height and weight them. Apparently you can sit in the clinic if you like but we didn’t so we were basically just standing around outside the door. I must admit that it is slow & boring and I can’t ever imagine a band 5 nurse actually using their training in outpatients. There are a few band 6’s that run clinics and also a cancer nurse specialist (which I want to become, once trained).

The lady who I was working with is only on bank but does 3 days a week every week. I think due to the way the clinics run there aren’t enough hours to have many contracted HCA’s so bank staff can easily make up the numbers. I have a few more shifts already booked and  can just go down there and tell them my availability and they will book me in. Outpatients appeals to me mainly for the hours 8:30am-18:00pm and the fact there are no patient washes or toileting!

I happen to book a few shifts in Opthalmology yesterday. Now that is a clinic where bank shifts never come up for and another place I wouldn’t mind working perm on. I am told that it is similar to outpatients and basic HCA duties. The perm HCA’s have more specialised skills but we wouldn’t be expected to be training in those.

So as the post title stated ‘black Wednesday’ has happened on our floor. I’m no talking about a happy event like ‘black Friday’ but rather a day when the first year newly qualified Dr’s are left to work unchaperoned, a day when the most deaths in a hospital happens.

So the story goes a little something like this:

The day staff on Wednesday handed over to a Dr that one patients wasn’t doing very good and his observations were pretty bad. This was also handed over to the night staff, all seams okay so far. Except 1.5hrs since the Dr was informed no-one had been to see this patient, this patient then arrested and died, a death that shouldn’t have happen or at least one where his family could have been there for. This was all brought up in the ‘safety huddle’ (don’t ask) on Thursday morning. I’m not sure what happens in these cases, do the family sue? does the Dr get sacked? is it a learning curve? I don’t know, I just know I never want to be a Dr.

In other work news, our matron is no longer our matron. This was announced by our matron during Wednesday’s ‘safety huddle’ and came as a bit of a shock for everyone including the matron. It isn’t a case of her applying and getting another job but rather the powers that be thought she wasn’t doing a good enough job or someone could do it better. We don’t know yet who is taking over but it appears it will be two people from the site team (site managers). I always though they were above matron but apparently it is a step up to become matron.

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