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Headline

Is the doctor-nurse game still being played?

Comment

The doctor-nurse game would, in my opinion, be very person dependent. I work with doctors who very much value their nurses as professionals who provide a contribution to a holistic, multi-disciplinary approach and also doctors who view nurses as their "doers". I also work with nurses who see themselves as an equal cog in the wheel of the patient journey and those who are much less autonomous. The increased diversity of nursing roles has led to an availability of roles requiring experience supported by increased academia. This is surely to be applauded. Fundamentally there are roles which have been created to fill the gap left by the reduction in junior doctors numbers, this does not mean that these nurses are wantobe doctors but rather they are nurses who can provide similar skills from a different standpoint- this is tremendous opportunity for those of us who are old enough to know that the traditional route of nurse was into ward/hospital management or teaching. Delegation or devolvement of tasks is a NHS phenomena. Have we considered tasks of the HCA that used to be in jurisdiction of a trained nurse, physio that is in the hands of the physio assistant etc etc. Those nurses who trained in the time where doctors gave IV drugs, took bloods and cannulated must recognise the more timely manner in which these are provided now that they have become embedded in a qualified nurses' role but nurses cannot be all things to all people and there is only a certain amount of time in each day. What are the more sophisticated elements of care the doctors are supposed to be moving on to that nurses are not also moving on to? Professional respect can be earned by performance in the same way as doctors. I think, in the main, doctors are not given automatic respect by healthcare personnel anymore....it is earned as an individual and not given as a right. The same should be said for advanced nurses. The claim for equal pay is not fair..we are not doctors and despite MScs (with the occasional PhD) we have not undergone the same training. Pay should be reflected in the banding and job descriptions of individual roles. This is not helped by the NMC dragging their feet in this regard. In my Trust and in my role, my team has earned the trust and respect of our medical colleagues. We sit equally with them in ward meetings as part of the Consultant team where comments and recommendations are valued.The direction of our role has been pushed by ourselves and facilitated through Trust hoops by Consultant support (Trust board level is an arena where frequently the problems arise.) It should be a fantastic time to be a nurse....opportunities are continually arising which should be grasped for personal satisfaction. As a profession we should be stressing the positivities and not harping on about doctors v nurses. We are both essential in DIFFERENT ways. After all, nurses will know that it is possible for a nurse (suitably qualified, experienced and trained obviously) to provide holistic care without a doctor but would a doctor be able to do the same without a nurse? However much doctor training has been improved with regards to communication, how often has a doctor changed a bed with a patient in, changed an incontinent patient, given mouthcare ....need I go on.

Posted date

1 November, 2011

Posted time

7:00 pm

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