Part Five – Through the Eyes of a Head Nurse.
I am Sam and I am Head Nurse at our Leamington Hospital. I have been a RVN for over 12 years now and I still have the same enthusiasm and passion as I did when I first started nursing. I have been with Feldon for over 10 years and am lucky to have a fantastic opportunity to not only to do this role on a part-time basis (so I have a good work-life balance), but to still nurse in a way that benefits others.
As a RVN I never want to stop learning; I am currently sitting my final exams for my Diploma in Advanced Veterinary Nursing at Harper Adams University. All nurses have to adhere to the guidelines of the RCVS code of conduct which stipulates we have to complete 15 hours of CPD each year to remain a Registered Veterinary Nurse and I think this is a vital part of nursing as the ever-changing environment keeps nurses on their toes. CPD can be reading an article in a journal whilst having a well-earned cup of tea, or attending an external lecture offering interesting and relevant information to allow nurses to improve their abilities and to practise evidence based medicine.
One of my favourite areas to work in is anaesthesia. I enjoy the complexity it entails; preparing patients, monitoring their vital signs and assisting in their recovery. From a routine cat castration to a complex Caesarian section, no one anaesthetic will be the same.
I have to admit that the admin side of my job is not my favourite, but it does take up around 25% of my time and is a necessary evil. A major part of this is ensuring we have the right staff in the right place at the right time, and this is no easy task.
A big passion of mine is the ability to pass on my knowledge and experience to others. Feldon is an accredited training practice and we take great pride in training and mentoring our student nurses so that they can have the best learning environment.
My real clinical passion has to be medical and critical care nursing. Critical patients can be on the edge of survival and with a dedicated team of vets and nurses we can nurse them back to full health. Being able to make a real difference to that patient at that time, spending time and getting to know them and supporting their owners through a difficult time is incredibly rewarding and motivating.
On a personal note, being a mum to two young children, studying for a diploma and working is sometimes difficult but I wouldn’t have it any other way. Some would say I love the pressure, and they’re probably correct, but the support I receive from my husband and all my colleagues at Feldon is amazing and I really don’t think I could do it all without them.
Friendly, Dedicated and Compassionate