The aim of this essay is to reflect on an incident, which took place in a hospital setting during the first month of my Foundation Degree Assistant Practitioner course. It will explore the importance of communication amongst the health care professionals and how a good nursing documentation is an integral part of nursing. It will also demonstrate how reflection enabled me to make sense of and learn from this experience, as well as identify any further learning developments needed to improve my practice and achieve the level of competency needed for when I qualify as an assistant practitioner.
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It was carried out in a private room to preserve the patient’s confidentiality, as the NHS is committed to the delivery of a first class confidential service. This means ensuring that all patients’ information is processed fairly, lawfully and transparently as possible according to the Department of health (2003).
A copy of a handover sheet that contains: the patient’s name, age, consultant’s name, resuscitation statues, reason for admission, past medical history, and plans for discharge was given to all staff members. The nurse, in charge from the previous night, then gave an update of any changes that occurred during her shift and handed over any plans or procedures that needed to be carried out on the day.
After the handover, the nurse in charge, who I am going to name Helen, allocated duties to each member of staff.
I was given a bay with four female patients to look after and I was responsible for assisting them with their personal care, taking and recording their observation and assisting them with any other needs they may have had. Mrs. Smith was an 88 year old lady who was admitted with a urine tract infection and dehydration. She was bed bound, needed all care and normally lives in a nursing home. It was the first time I had met Mrs Smith, so I introduced myself, asked her how she was feeling and if she wanted to have a bed bath. She was very pleasant and stated that she would appreciate my assistance. After washing my hands, thoroughly, in line with the infection control policy (Buckinghamshire trust 2010), I assembled all the necessary equipments needed for this task and closed the curtains securely to ensure Mrs. Smith’s dignity and privacy in accordance with the NMC (2010). I started washing Mrs Smith, making sure I was talking her through what I was doing step by step; I got to the point where I needed to change the bed linen and Mrs Smith was very cooperative, turning to her side to facilitate the move. I was very close to her brushing her hair, when suddenly she punched me very hard to the right side of my head.
I was so shocked by Mrs Smith’s action. I stepped back and asked her why she hit me when I was helping her. I went out of the bay and called Helen and told her what had happened. She stated that Mrs Smith was known to have mood changes and be aggressive due to her dementia, which explained why she behaved that way.
Mrs Smith suffered from Fronto-Temporal dementia, which is caused by damage to parts of the brain that help control emotional responses and behaviour. Therefore, many of the initial symptoms involve changes in emotion, personality and behaviour. NHS choices (2010).
In a way, I felt better that it was nothing personal against me, however I felt angry that I was not warned by Helen, or other staff members that Mrs Smith can be aggressive. When I checked the handover sheet, dementia was written in the Colum for the medical history for Mrs Smith, but checking the previous entries in medical...