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ASK A STUDENT NURSE

'I'm terrified of making mistakes when doing drug calculations'

  • 1 Comment

Do you have any advice for this student nurse?

“I’m in my second year studying children’s nursing and love everything about it, expect drug calculations. Maths has never been my strong point but when I’m practicing at home and I’m calm I can figure out what I need to do and it seems obvious. But when I’m in an exam or, worse, with a patient, my mind just goes blank. I just keep thinking that if I get this wrong I could kill someone and I don’t trust myself to get it right.

“Does anyone else get this? How can I improve my confidence?”

Sandy, Manchester

Do you have any advice for this student nurse?

Please use the comment section below

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Readers' comments (1)

  • I felt the exact same throughout my training, and am now a graduate nurse. What helped me was developing my confidence through the use of an online programme called SafeMedicate, part of the university training. I found it helped to keep practising with the formula both online, in uni and in clinical practice - especially when out in placement as this will develop confidence. I found is useful when dispensing in the treatment room to write the formula down on paper. This can then be double checked by yourself and a registered practitioner (it can also be used as evidence in your portfolio or for proficiencies). If you are at the drug trolley and the patient's bedside, take your time, and again, write down the formula. Keep practising with numbers using different resources and you will find your way. My resolve was to conquer my fear in order to be a safe and effective practitioner.

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