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Foundations for Professional Practice

Introduction to Foundations for Professional Practice

Reflection is an essential implement that helps a person to acquire knowledge from past experiences and proofs to better the personal as well as professional exercises. This assessment aims to focus upon the case study of a student nurse who has started the post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) in a hospital, but, felt difficulty in a case where she finds confusion in managing and handling sharp instruments (needles, cannulas) as the instructions of managing and handling sharps instruments were not appropriate for the patient's case, she was placed on and panicked at the time of performing the action. This revealed a sign of confusion and nervousness during the practice and that Driscoll's model of reflection can be a better guide regarding what an individual should do to improve things from past experiences.

Driscoll’s Reflective Model


I’m a student nurse, pursuing nursing education, and have just initiated my post-exposure prophylaxis in a medical organization. In the practice areas, a lecturer as well as a tutor taught the beneficence of how to manage sharps like needles, syringes, cannulas and instructed many times to not recap a needle after administering an injection, keep it inside the kidney dish and then, dispose of it directly in a designated sharps carrier. Also, I checked out a website in which my tutor was directing students that needles mustn’t be reclosed, twisted, or broken just after its use. When I was on my working, I got paired with a Registered Nurse who instructed me to administer insulin to the patient, I was getting nervous because the nurse can be strict if I won’t do the things in her way. I injected the injection but forgot to bring the kidney dish and I started panicking as I didn't know the location of the closest sharps container. The RN awkwardly looked towards me, as I was holding that needle and told me to re-close it. I denied because I was instructed by my tutor that reclosing the needles increases the chances of a needle-puncture injury, and that can transmit critical blood-borne syndromes and diseases. Once again, RN instructs me to re-close the needles, but I remain standing at my place once again because I was confused between the instructions which were given by the tutor and the instructions RN was giving me to do. Then the RN shouts at me to re-close the needle. Being in anxiety and stress, I started to recap the needle and my hands were shivering so much that by chance, the needle punctured the skin on my left thumb. Annoyed, the RN returns to the patient and says, “we’ll take the patient's blood sample to check what are the rare disease this imbecile has contracted".

There was confusion in instructions of both, the tutor and the RN and also, the tutor didn't mention that not every needle needs to be disposed of and some needles are re-capped after the drug administration. 

So What?

During the practice, I must not have panicked and understood the instructions by being calm and confident and asked the RN that I was instructed by my tutor that needles are not recapped as there are chances of getting a needle-stick injury. I wouldn't have refused to follow the instruction given by RN as it shows the breaching in terms of ethical concern. Also, my tutor must have instructed clearly that, all needles are not disposed of, some are re-capped again after the drug administration like a needle to be re-capped after insulin injection, which I've learned from my experience. Also, from the start, I was nervous and thought that the RN can be critical if I refuse to do things her way and as I was uncomfortable and nervous, I'd have said this to RN, also there is a fact that nurses can make arrangements with their co-workers, supervisors, and managers if required, to assign some other nurse for patient care. And, from my personal experience, I feel that nurses must have verbalized concern with their supervisors and manager so the assignments could be exchanged and substitutes could be found. Moreover, student nurses like me, who do not have the experience to deal with such dilemmas, should practice and work in care areas where there are fewer chances to come across such dilemmas and also, will learn and experience things with a better understanding to avoid getting confused, panicked and nervous in such situation (Registerednursing.org 2020). 

Accomplishing perfection is essentially necessary for a clinical profession because clinical specialists and practitioners are linking with most cherished and delightful merchandise that is called life which involves the profession of nursing. And, when you get into a job and start a new profession as a nurse you'll probably get panicked and nervous, you still adopt the environment and might rush for the time which can result you in making many mistakes. No matter how logical a nurse be and how much well-prepared they are to perform the best probable job but, they are humans, able of making errors. Also, it is often that mistakes and errors become ordinary for the nurses who work for longer shift hours, are new to do the job, having a higher load of work, or are inexperienced, as it happened in the case of mine. But luckily, there is the probability of minimizing the chances to commit errors, by taking time to prepare yourself by being aware of ordinary mistakes that are committed by new practicing nurses and in what way you can avoid those errors and mistakes (Nurse journal 2020). By understanding to ethico-legal perspectives, practicing student nurses like me could get to know and learn from their past experiences to avoid such mistakes and not getting panic or nervous, as because missing the ethico-legal standards can lead to hampering in the treatment and nurses won't understand the meaning of how they should perform in tough situations without getting nervous and confused, and perform in a better way with sound understanding, calm and confident behavior.

Now What?

I got panicked at the time of patient care and got confused with the instructions that were told by the tutor and the instructions which the RN was instructing me to do. From this experience, I've learned to raise questions which I'm getting confused with any instruction given to me and also, learn more about the knowledgeable facts apart related to the instructions provided which will make it better in handling such situations without getting confused, refusing to the senior nurse and also, getting panicked and nervous. This made me come across the fact that calmness and confidence are must as because many situations are there where we have to come across to them in our routine tasks, which can be critical and sound understanding, patience, and confidence is required to overcome such situations. Medical teams of professionals accost adoption challenges which can represent ethical cases needing legal decision-forming models to hold medical healthcare practitioners for proper and required action on the behalf of safety and adequate medical care (OJIN 2018). Ethical values in concern with the standards of ethical judgment and occupational conduct are necessary for the nurses who are liable to the public, their patients, the employees, and the whole profession. These ethical values in terms of the ethico-legal perspective must be adhered to during practice. The duties of autonomy, confidentiality, care towards every patient must be performed in a better way by nurses as these duties are supplemented via principles and standards of beneficence, promoting good towards patients and avoiding harm inpatient care (NursingAnswers.net 2020). Also, the six ethical ideal that a nurse must follow when working in a correctional surrounding is independence and self-dedication, performing in a good manner, refraining from harm, being fair, equal and truthful towards patients, working and the profession, speaking and informing the truthful information whoever needs to ask, being faithful to an individual's commitment (NCCHC 2020). Also, the NCLEX-RN investigation helps to display the knowledge as well as skills of ethico-legal practice to: identify ethical crisis and make a proper action, providing information to the staff in concern of ethical crisis that is affecting patient care, practicing constantly by adhering to code of ethics which is established for registered nurses, assess consequences of mediations to improve and enhance ethico-legal work and practice (Registerednursing.org 2020).

Conclusion on Foundations for Professional Practice

This reflection aimed to focus on ethico-legal standards that a nurse should maintain while working and practicing to provide adequate and quality care to patients without getting panicked. Getting panicked in such situations just makes the situation go to the bad side and requires correction to make it correct. Practicing in the medical profession to provide appropriate patients care, requires the nurse to be confident towards her actions, able to perform the instructions as said by the registered nurse, supervisor or any other staff member because in case of emergencies, getting panicked can put the patient's life in danger. Also, nurses must adhere to the ethico-legal standards such as code of ethics established for nurses and other ethical standards which should be kept in mind during practicing to avoid such situations of being nervous, getting panicked and confused.

Reference for Foundations for Professional Practice

NCCHS. 2020. Ethical and legal issues. [Online]. Available at: https://www.ncchc.org/cnp-ethical-legal

Nurse Journal. 2020. The 5 most common mistakes made by new nurses. [Online]. Available at: https://nursejournal.org/articles/the-5-most-common-mistakes-made-by-new-nurses/ [Accessed on June 3, 2020].

NursingAnswers.net. 2020. Legal, ethical and professional issues in nursing. [Online]. Available at: https://nursinganswers.net/essays/legal-ethical-professional.php [Accessed on Feb 11, 2020].

OJIN. 2020. Identifying and addressing ethical issues with use of electronic health records. [Online]. Available at: https://ojin.nursingworld.org/MainMenuCategories/ANAMarketplace/ANAPeriodicals/OJIN/TableofContents/Vol-23-2018/No1-Jan-2018/Identifying-and-Addressing-Ethical-Issues-EHR.html

Registerednursing.org. 2020. Ethical practice: NCLEX-RN. [Online]. Available at: https://www.registerednursing.org/nclex/ethical-practice/ [Accessed on March 11, 2020].

Registerednursing.org. 2020. How nurses can avoid the common nursing violations. [Online]. Available at: https://www.registerednursing.org/how-avoid-common-ethics-violations/ [Accessed on March 1, 2020].

Remember, at the center of any academic work, lies clarity and evidence. Should you need further assistance, do look up to our Nursing Assignment Help

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