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Nursing Salon on Jan 17, 2008 January 21, 2008

Posted by mariemanthey in Nursing Salons, Values.
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3 comments

The group at this Salon was another interesting mixture of different ages: from a couple of student nurses, to several new as well as senior Staff Nurses, Nurse Managers, an Educator, a retired Physician and a couple of Clinical Nurse Specialists.

The discussion eventually focused on pressures created by the health care system and the relationship issues present in current practice settings. Systems and Relationships.

As usual, the electronic medical/health record was front and center, but not only the usual age-related differences in use and perception. This discussion also focused on how electronic records are changing the thought processes nurses use.  A very experienced NICU staff nurse mentioned the reality that critical thinking also refers to decisions about what not to do, which is equally as important as the decisions about what to do. However, the structure of the EMR  requires those decisions to be revisited in order to complete documentation.

That comment just opened the door to more discussion about the control over practice thinking that is mandated by the EMR.  An experienced Delivery Room nurse commented about the problem of trying to put in q2min. vitals during a critical episode (not having learned typing), while another commented on the ease of her system that automatically inputs physiological data from another computer system. Both realities impact the nurses’ thinking.

And of course, this whole discussion was framed around the issue of relationships: nurse/patient, physician/nurse and nurse/nurse.  We talked about how important is is for students to learn, while in school, to manage  themselves in these highly stressful situations. It also became clear  that if that skill is not learned in school, it must be learned in the workplace.  The key to healthy relationships is the ability to manage oneself.

At the end of the evening,  comments reflected the belief that the human contact between patient and nurse is the eternal and important truth about nursing and that there is hope it will always remain at the core of our practice.

Here are a couple of follow-up emails I received.

Marie,Thank you for allowing me to attend your last Salon with my preceptor, Michael P! I had a wonderful time. You are an excellent cook and an engaging conversationalist!

I am in the process of writing a paper about the CNS impacting organizational culture. While researching, I came across a paper written by Lorraine Hardingham, a nurse clinical ethicist, who defends her position that “as human beings, we are essentially interrelated, and therefore, both personal and professional integrity, rightly understood, is relational in nature.” It seemed to fit with that night’s themes of Systems and Relationships. I attached the article if you are interested.

You mentioned that you’d be willing to send files on how to start a Salon. I hope to finish the CNS program in May and pass the certification exams. Then, I would love to start a group here in the Fargo-Moorhead area. Please send your information when it is convenient for you.

Again, thank you for a memorable time of connecting at your home.

With deep regard, Patrick S.

And from Deb M:

Again, another stimulating evening Marie. I come home all revved up and unable to sleep with thoughts racing through my brain. Thank you so much for these incredible forums! I am able to feed my body and my soul and I thank you