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READERS’ BLOG

'The term “student nurse” almost comes with the description of “doormat” in some areas'

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Mikey was unconvinced about how much the 6Cs could do for nursing, until he received a phone call from Marie Batey.

I recently wrote an article challenging whether the 6Cs nursing strategy was enough to be considered a health reform and what we, as students, can do to bring it into our practice on a day to day basis.

Shortly after Nursing Times published it, I was contacted by Marie Batey; who is part of the 6Cs Live team and also works in Jane Cummings’ office in London. I felt privileged to have a conversation with such a reputable figure in the nursing world, and it ended up being an extremely uplifting chat too.

Marie told me that I had ended my article with a question, which was: “Is the 6Cs really enough to reform the NHS?” to which she gave this answer: “No, but it’s a start”.

This simple statement of only five words was enough to inspire me in such a way that it got me to thinking, what could be the next step? I totally agree with Marie, it’s a great start. And now we have made such a positive start with a tremendous response from nurses nationwide, what is the next stage in cultivating our reform of the NHS?

“This simple statement of only five words was enough to inspire me”

Notice I wrote our reform, we as nurses control more than we realise.

We may even have more power than I think we realise, but a lot of our actions are governed by our fear of speaking out and becoming subsequently berated for doing so.

I am the future of the NHS. All student nurses are.

Why should we of all people be scared to stand up and challenge bad practice or speak out where it is needed? Why should we allow qualified members of staff and doctors to treat us in a lesser way? We are the future of the NHS, and right now we are determining how the NHS will pan out for our future.

“Right now we are determining how the NHS will pan out for our future”

If we ignore bad practice; allow ourselves to be treated in a lesser way than other members of staff, it will carry on into the future of the NHS.

When I walk onto a ward, I expect to be extended the same level of respect that I give out to everyone I meet. If this is not reciprocated, I would need to find out why and rectify it.

The term “student nurse” almost comes with the description of “doormat” in some areas of healthcare; as in most professions the newbies and less qualified workers are sometimes taken advantage of and that is fine, it comes with playing your dues in the world.

But there is thin line between paying your dues and being a doormat! As student nurses, we will only ever be treated in the way we allow ourselves to be treated.

Mikey Whitehead is a former student nurse editor paediatric branch and a student nurse studying children’s nursing

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