Benefits of a Nursing Career in the UK

Benefits of a Nursing Career in the UK

Most of those who work in nursing will tell you it’s more than just a career, it’s a calling. Providing care for patients at the most critical time in their life is rewarding and challenging. It’s a job where no one day is quite like another. But choosing to pursue a nursing career in the UK comes with a whole host of benefits too. Here are just a few we’d like to mention:

Nurses Are Always in Demand

There is a shortage of nurses at the moment and the NHS recently launched a recruitment campaign to inspire people to join the profession. While there are job opportunities across the NHS there’s also the private sector which offers massive opportunity. A UK nurse can find themselves working in a local hospital, a care home or providing support for a school or even a multi-national corporation.

Flexible Working

Pursuing a nursing career in the UK will offer you the option to work flexibly. Some nurses choose to work full-time, while others decide to work part time, perhaps while they are bringing up a family. You can find employment with a company or go through an agency if you want greater variety.

Nursing Career in the UK – Career Choices

Nursing in the UK gives you the opportunity to follow a wide range of career paths. You may qualify as a registered adult nurse or focus on an vocation like children’s nursing. There’s mental health, neonatal, prison nursing and a whole host of other routes you can follow.

Unlike some other healthcare professions, the ability to define your own career choices and build up your expertise is second to none. Its’ what many UK nurses like so much about the profession.

Good Rates of Pay

Nurses are well paid and what you earn will depend on the career path you choose. A nurse just starting out in the NHS can expect to earn a minimum of £22k per year while an advanced nurse practitioner can take home as much as £72K per year. If you work in the private sector and develop your career there, you can often expect to earn a lot more. Agency nurses such as those who work for Go Nurse can expect to earn between £17 to £26 per hour, depending on the shift.

Working With a Healthcare Team

Nursing involves liaising and working with a wide range of different healthcare professionals. That’s not just doctors, other nurses and surgeons but physiotherapists, paramedics, osteopaths, dieticians and radiographers to name just a few. One of the things that often attracts an individual to pursue a nursing career in the UK is the sheer diversity of the role and what it involves.

Continuing Professional Development

The learning support and continuous personal development of a nursing career is also one of the big benefits. CPD or continuing professional development is a key priority in this sector and you’ll always have plenty of opportunities to move your career forward. CPD can vary from simple one day top up courses to university studies including at Masters level.

It’s a Career You Can Take Anywhere

Finally, training to be a nurse in the UK means that you achieve a qualification that is recognised across the world. This provides you a whole host of opportunity to travel and work in different countries and with professionals from across the globe.

If you are considering your future, it is worth considering pursuing a nursing career in the UK.

 

Go Nurse is The Stress Free Nursing Agency for London nurses. Our nurses accept shifts, update availability, see upcoming shifts and find shift locations simply via our easy to use mobile phone app! Is it time you made a change? Register online today for nursing shifts across London.

 

Nurse Self Care – The Importance of Exercise

Nurse Self Care – The Importance of Exercise

Nursing is certainly one of the most stressful and demanding jobs you can ever hope to do. It’s also one of the most rewarding. Nurse self care is vital in this role, and one important factor in self care is exercise.

Of course, when you’ve been working a long hard shift, the last thing you may want to do is exercise. Yes, you know it’s good for you, but do you have the energy? Many nurses naturally have a level of exercise as part of their daily routine, particularly if they work in an area like A&E or have a district nursing job.

Unfortunately, at least one study has found that as many as 1 in 4 nurses are thought to be overweight. It’s led to calls for employers such as the NHS to do more to keep their staff in good health.

Nurse Self Care: The Benefits of Exercise

  • Even a small amount of exercise improves physical fitness and boosts energy levels
  • Regular exercise as part of a healthy eating routine is the best way to ensure that you maintain a good weight
  • Exercise actually makes you feel good, releasing endorphins that put you in a great mood
  • When you exercise regularly, you look good and that can give your self esteem a big boost
  • Exercise builds endurance, something that’s important in many aspects of healthcare work

It’s not just the physical side of things that exercise helps with. It has been shown to reduce stress and promote good sleep leading to a better sense of overall well-being.

Nurse Self Care: How to Bring Exercise Into Your Daily Routine

There are plenty of ways to incorporate exercise into your daily routine and it doesn’t have to be expensive or time consuming. For a start, a brisk walk once a day for just 15 minutes can get your blood flowing and improve energy levels. The trick is to find something that suits you and which can be easily incorporate into your life. If you love going to the gym, that’s great, but not everybody does. The good news is there are excellent ways to practise your nurse self care and exercise at home.

You could jump on an exercise bike or simply buy yourself a skipping rope, for example. Both are great for getting the heart rate up. You can even exercise while you’re at work. Doing a few squats, side stretches or jumping jacks when you have a spare moment help release all those endorphins as well as shake off the pressures of the day. Could you walk to work instead of driving or taking public transport?

Department of Health guidelines suggest that we should all be getting at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity a week. What does moderate mean? If you’re getting slightly out of breath while doing your exercise, then you’re probably doing it just right.

Here are a few exercise options you may want to consider:

  • Joining an exercise club: There are many that operate outside nowadays in parks and on promenades around the country and they’re great if you want to join in with other people (you may even make a few new friends locally!)
  • Take up yoga: It’s perfect for stretching those limbs and muscles but is low impact enough to not be too strenuous on the body
  • Try hill walking in the country: The countryside is beautiful, and its free. Just get yourself a pair of comfy walking shoes and you’re ready to go (this will also help you to unwind mentally)
  • Go for a swim at your local leisure centre: This is one of the best all-round exercises and also not too impactful on joints
  • See if high intensity training is right for you: HIIT involves quick bursts of exercise and has been show to improve fitness quickly. It’s also a great exercise option for those who are short of time

If you’re working in healthcare or you are in need of nurse self care, it’s never too early or too late to start creating your own special exercise regime. Start with a few simple changes and you’ll soon see a difference.

 

Go Nurse is The Stress Free Nursing Agency for London nurses. Our nurses accept shifts, update availability, see upcoming shifts and find shift locations simply via our easy to use mobile phone app! Is it time you made a change? Register online today for nursing shifts across London.

Nurse Self Care – Healthy Eating Habits

Nurse Self Care – Healthy Eating Habits

Nobody is more aware of the benefits of healthy eating than a nurse. The trouble is, with the demanding and stressful job of nursing, it is easy for nurses themselves get into bad habits. Eating on the go, opting for quick but unhealthy food and working odd shifts can all have a huge impact on dietary habits. Nurse self care very much includes healthy eating options.

A survey by the Nursing Times a couple of years ago found that stress is a big driver when it comes to unhealthy eating habits in nurses. While 80% confessed to having missed important meals because they were working, nearly half also admitted to grabbing a quick bite on the move, usually something unhealthy like a burger.

While many nurses do make the effort to eat healthily because they know how important it is, many find it difficult. After a long, hard shift, it’s so easy to pick up a takeaway because it’s a quick and easy comfort food rather than having to prepare a balanced meal. There are other issues that get in the way of developing those healthy eating habits. If you are also a parent, this can be another factor affecting the time you have to spend on planning and preparing for your own nutritional needs.

For most nurses it is not that they don’t know what healthy eating is but that life simply gets in the way. The good news is that a few simple changes and planning techniques can make an enormous difference!

Nurse Self Care: Keep a Food Diary

We often underestimate the amount we are eating and are unaware of what we are actually putting into our bodies, and it can be difficult to keep track. That’s why starting a food diary will make a big difference and help you address any problems such as having too many unhealthy options on your plate. At the end of each week, read back through your food diary – you will be amazed at how many unhealthy options creep in!

Nurse Self Care: Don’t Try to Change All at Once

It can be a major challenge completely changing your diet in one go. Break your nutritional goals down into smaller ‘bite-size’ chunks and address each meal and each day individually.

Nurse Self Care: Increase Your Water Intake

Most people who lead busy and stressful lives, tend to have a problem with hydration. While that fizzy drink or coffee may seem highly appealing, swapping for a healthy bottle of water can leave you more energised and awake. Regular drinking of water will also help you manage your appetite as often when our body tells us that it is hungry, it is actually telling us that we are dehydrated.

Nurse Self Care: Opt For Healthy Snack Options

Healthy snacking does not have to mean boring or tasteless. That may have been the case in the past but there are plenty of different options to choose from today that give you a tasty, energy boost without damaging your health. Here is a list of healthy snack options that are quick and easy to prepare.

Nurse Self Care: Cut Out Processed Food

A big, modern day health challenge is eating too much processed food – not only does it contain high amounts of sugar and salt, it’s also not nutritious. While a ready meal might sound appealing, try to get into the habit of eating fresh produce as much as you can – it’s much tastier anyway!

Nurse Self Care: Sit Down to Eat

Do you spend most of your time eating on the go? Take time to sit down and enjoy your meal without any interruptions. When your shift ends, don’t slump down in front of the television with a tray, sit down and have a proper meal at the dining table – or try to do this at least 4 times a week.

Nurse Self Care: Plan and Prepare

Any nurse will tell you – there is never enough time! However spending a bit of time planning meals, will actually save you time in the long run. You can plan and prepare meals that you can freeze and then just defrost and heat to eat. Each week plan your shopping list and prepare meals for the following week, so you don’t end up buying last minute unhealthy snacks and take aways.

Planning makes it much easier to make healthy choices and that includes what you take to work with you to snack on. Make it a priority and you should discover that you find it quicker to get into healthy eating habits.

 

Go Nurse is The Stress Free Nursing Agency for London nurses. Our nurses accept shifts, update availability, see upcoming shifts and find shift locations simply via our easy to use mobile phone app! Is it time you made a change? Register online today for nursing shifts across London.

How to Respond to Nurse Bullying

How to Respond to Nurse Bullying

There is widespread incidence of nurse bullying within the healthcare profession that still continues today. Some nurses may have encountered bullies before which made them question their own ability, skills and nursing credibility. Remember that the victims are not at fault for the abuse that they are subjected to. However we wanted to explore this and how to respond to nurse bullying.

 

How to Respond to Nurse Bullying

 

Do not feel bad about Yourself

“When people don’t like themselves very much, they have to make up for it. The classic bully was actually a victim first.” — Tom Hiddleston

Bullies are often insecure people and tend to victimise individuals who they feel threatened by. They inflict resentment on their targets to feel better about themselves. If you feel that you have been victimised by one of your colleagues, try not to let it get to you and do not take it personally.  Seek out other members of staff who can guide you and mentor you to become better in your profession if you do feel any insecurity in your role.

 

Educate Yourself

One of the best ways to combat bullying in the workplace is to be completely confident in your role and responsibilities. This will mean that you will be confident in your convictions and yourself should any colleague challenge you. Familiarise yourself with the policies and procedures of your company. You could even pursue further studies to continually enhance your nursing and healthcare knowledge. It is hard for bullies to question or confront you when they know you are well informed and confident.

 

Confront your Bully

Many people don’t like confrontation, bullies included. Sometimes individuals are not aware of the impact of their behaviour and do not perceive it as bullying.  Confronting your bully brings their behaviour to their attention. They are then aware of your feelings and that you deem their behaviour as unacceptable. You can also make it clear to them that if they do not stop, you will call the attention of higher authorities to address the matter. Sometimes this is all that is required to end nurse bullying.

 

Keep a Journal

Keep a journal and diary of your working day. Nurses will be familiar with this practice in the healthcare industry! This is especially important if you find you are becoming the victim of ongoing nurse bullying or abuse. This practice will help you document details of any incidents at work. You can then use this resource to make your charge manager or superior aware of the duration as well as the nature of bullying.

 

Inform your Manager and HR in Writing

If the nurse bullying persists,  you should approach up your HR and Nurse Manager to report what has been going on. You must also make the complaint official in writing and include as much detail as you can. They will support you and take appropriate action to deal with the issue further. It is their duty to ensure the workplace remains safe not only for you but the rest of the staff, and patients as well.

 

Avoid your Bully

Once you have filed a complaint against your bully, try to avoid him or her. You could request not to be assigned in the same team or shifts. If this is not possible, try to avoid them where possible. Continue to do your job to the best of your ability.

For more information and guidance regarding nurse bullying and the things you can do to stop it, visit the RCN and NHS websites.

 

Go Nurse is The Stress Free Nursing Agency for London nurses. Our nurses accept shifts, update availability, see upcoming shifts and find shift locations simply via our easy to use mobile phone app! Is it time you made a change? Register online today for nursing shifts across London.

The Stigma of Agency Nursing

The Stigma of Agency Nursing

With the advent of the NHS staffing crisis, and shortage of care home nurses,  agency nurses are often around to support. Nurses however are quite a “clicky”bunch. Nurses like the familiar faces of colleagues and people who they are comfortable working with. They like to work with people whose skill set they are confident in, and people they can trust. For this reason, agency nurses are stigmatised. Agency nurses come from differing backgrounds and may have little or no experience working in the environment that they are placed in as an agency nurse.

Agency Nursing: The Stigma

Regular nurses can get frustrated.  Instead of receiving support, they often end up carrying out the majority of the work on shift. They doubt the agency nurse’s capacity to competently care for patients with specific conditions. It is however unfair to view agency nurses as incompetent. Just because they do not have experience working in an area of specialist nursing does not mean they are incompetent. For example, a pulmonary nurse was given a shift on a kidney and liver transplant ward. She may not have the extensive knowledge and skills to effectively work on that unit. However, when one patient developed pulmonary oedema as a result of his illness, the pulmonary nurse was able to properly apply the care which was instructed by a doctor.

Breaking the Stigma of Agency Nursing

As an agency nurse, it becomes more and more important to prove yourself. This is not only to break the stigma, but because maybe you have also been at the receiving end of unsatisfactory work as a regular nurse. This stigma also stems from the fact that some agency nurses are given shifts even though they do not have the experience in a specific area. Agency nurses are no different to regular nurses and hold the same nursing qualifications. In fact, some agency nurses are actually more experienced than the regular nurses they are put on shift with.

Responsibility on Both Sides

For agency nurses, know the basics and gain as much experience as you can. Being able to identify your limitations in a setting which is totally new to you, is vital in ensuring safe and effective care. By being able to do this you are able to show your proficiency as a nurse. This will help you earn the trust and respect of the regular nurses you are working with. Be aware of your capabilities and do not accept shifts in specialisms where you know you have no experience.

As a regular nurse, do not to be unfairly judgemental of agency nurses. Ensure you are aware of the agency nurses experience and specialisms, and be more trusting.

 

Go Nurse is The Stress Free Nursing Agency for London nurses. Is it time you made a change? Register online today for nursing shifts across London.

Top 7 Nursing Essentials

Top 7 Nursing Essentials

Every job has its only unique requirements and there are certain things without which, you would not be able to carry out your role to the best of your ability. Nursing is no different – there are nursing essentials that make the job just that much easier, and make nurses more comfortable during a long, tenuous shift.

Something as mundane as your choice of shoes can affect your level of comfort and influence work outcomes.

Read on to the essential items that every nurse must have…

Nursing Essentials No 1 – Compression Stockings

Definitely a must have especially when nurses are standing and running around all day. Compression stockings help promote circulation and help to alleviate tired feet. These stockings also help prevent unsightly varicose veins from forming. Be sure to get the correct size for your feet though, because wearing compression stockings that are too tight or too loose defeats the purpose of wearing them.

Nursing Essentials No 2 – Comfortable Footwear

Orthopaedic shoes are usually the choice of nurses when it comes to footwear. They are great in preventing joint pain and poor posture resulting from an improper stance. Shoes should also be flexible (imagine being able to wriggle your toes in them) and yet firm so your feet are protected when working with and around heavy equipment and objects. Orthopaedic shoes are all supporting and comfortable and many of the soles will take the shape of your foot.

Nursing Essentials No 3 – Nursing Bag

A light weight bag that will hold and organise all your nursing essentials from your stethoscope to your scissors is usually best. Some nurses find that a bag with many different compartments assists with keeping their bag organised and ensures that they don’t forget anything. Furthermore, a light weight, ergonomic designed bag will help prevent shoulder and back pain if you do have many items to carry.

Nursing Essentials No 4 – Comfortable Uniform

NHS and many agency nurses are provided a uniform which they are required to wear. Make sure you are provided the correct size for your frame. Materials should be soft, elasticated, and non-binding to allow the nurse to move freely. Uniforms are not always figure flattering, however remember that comfort is key and a professional image is essential.

Nursing Essentials No 5 – Pens

Part of the role of being a nurse is having to complete clear and detailed documentation, patient charts, reports ……. and the list goes on! For this, you will at all times need to have more than one fully-functioning pen. Never forget to bring your own pens to a shift, and make sure they are leak-proof, as you do not want a huge ink stain on the front of your smart, clean uniform! Also, nothing will irritate your colleagues more than you having to constantly borrow their pen!

Nursing Essentials No 6 – A Second Pair of Shoes

It is always advisable to have a second pair of shoes so you can alternate and let your work footwear breathe. This not only helps prolong the life of your shoes by helping them retain their shape, but prevents them from becoming smelly.

Nursing Essentials No 7 – Fob Watch

Nurses require a watch to carry out patient observations, as well as keep an eye on their shift time. A normal watch may scratch or hurt patients as worn on the wrist, will get in the way of hand washing, and is also not very hygienic in a medical environment. A fob watch not only is a historical nurse symbol, it is also conveniently attached to your uniform and is much more hygienic.

 

Go Nurse is The Stress Free Nursing Agency for London nurses. Is it time you made a change? Register online today for nursing shifts across London.