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'As students most of us get to enjoy our festive period relatively stress-free'

  • Comments (2)

It’s that time of year again when we buy presents, look forward to the special food and enjoy spending time with our families; but what about the people we leave behind when our year is done?

This christmas time, like with every other, will be a time of sadness, anguish and hard work for thousands. For many students this may be your first christmas in healthcare and to somebody who has previously worked in a hospital for a number of years it can be easy to forget what happens over the festive period.

There are the nurses who will be on the wards across the country caring for the sick on Christmas Day. There will be the ambulance workers and call centre staff, so if you do need to call 999 you can be sure someone will answer. There will be surgeons and doctors performing vital operations. Then there are the midwives who deliver the numerous ‘christmas babies’ each year. There are the healthcare assistants who do so much to keep a ward running smoothly. And too, the few students who are still on placement.

Of course we have patients who desperately want to be home and the relatives who sit by their side to make sure they’re not alone. As students we are lucky, we get to enjoy our festive period relatively stress-free, but hopefully while doing so we can think of those who are less fortunate.

Thank you to all those who work so hard over the christmas and new year period. You truly make the NHS a source of pride to me and many others.

Thank you as well to everybody at the Nursing Times and Student Nursing Times, both staff and readers. It’s been an incredible couple of months and I know things are only going to get better in 2012.

Have a Merry Christmas and a safe New Year!

  • Comments (2)

Readers' comments (2)

  • Anonymous

    My placement finishes on Christmas Day and I will be working Christmas Eve night, I know that working on Christmas Day is part and parcel of becoming a Nurse but I did think that as a Third Year Student I might be afforded the day off, as my last Christmas when I didn't have to work as I was supernumerary, ho hum. :-(

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  • Adam says it all.

    I finished my placement last week but, for the first time ever being alone in the house over Christmas, I'm going - as a volunteer - to the large London hospital where I had been working, on Christmas Day to chat c. patients and pull crackers c. them.

    No brownie points for doing this - it's as much for my benefit as for their's and probably more for mine - but it will fix in my mind just how lonely and isolated patients without relatives or friends visiting them are likely to feel at this time.

    Interaction c. other patients is, I fear, unlikely to ease these feelings to any meaninful extent and, in any case, is apt only to be a temporary relief.

    At least those working on Christmas Day have usually got families and partners to whom they can return when the shift is done. Some of the patients don't; should we not be mindful of this?

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