The Gap: Nurses From Different Generations Discuss The Cases That Stay With Them
Two nurses from different generations have revealed the things that unite their profession, and the things that have changed over the years.
In the first episode of LADbible Original The Gap season two, retired nurse Christine Handcock joins 25-year-old nurse Malachi Connolly to assess the similarities and differences in nursing over the past few decades.
Whilst the fundamentals have not changed drastically, it seems as if bureaucracy and the state of the NHS have shifted over the years.
However, they both agree that their work - and specific cases - are difficult not to take home with them after their shift has finished.
Christine explained: "I remember once a patient who'd had a couple of cardiac arrests. He shook the doctor's hand and said 'thank you for saving my life' and then he turned to me and said 'thank you sister for telling doctor to save my life'.
"We're always taught that with patients, hearing is the last thing that goes and I can remember saying to this doctor who was standing nervously with these defibrillation paddles to 'get a move on', 'he's fading', or 'he's gone', and he'd obviously heard that."
Malachi, though relatively new to the profession, already has his own stories of families he's helped, and of those who he hasn't been able to save.
He said: "One of my most moving pieces of appreciation from a family was a teenager who'd lost her new-born baby, unfortunately she'd tried to end her life, but she'd done it in such a way that meant she wasn't able to go to her baby's funeral.
"She was too unwell to actually leave bed effectively, but we got her to have a viewing and spend time with her baby, and she was so grateful for that.
"She had a new lease on life after it, she actively wanted to engage in rehab and get out and carry on with her life.
"It kind of re-instilled in me the fact that I knew that this is what I wanted to do."
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Obviously, one thing that hasn't changed is the spectre of death that looms around every hospital corridor.
However, the circumstances surrounding those deaths can be more traumatic than the events themselves.
Malachi continued: "The unexpected deaths are always a bit more difficult, and the deaths of people that don't have anyone because they might be the last of their family, or their family are abroad.
"One of my first shifts in charge, [there was] someone that was in their late 90s and we just watched him get steadily more unwell for three days.
"Then, his family coming in and- obviously because I was in charge - sitting down with the doctor and having to describe what had happened.
"They didn't want to come in to collect his belongings, so me and the nurse that was caring for him on that shift went in and packed up his cards and his photos, and there was photos of him and his wife from when they were younger.
"Putting them in a bag and then closing that bag was difficult. Sometimes, I think, it's hard not to feel like you've failed."
Despite that, both agreed that their profession is important, rewarding, and - perhaps surprisingly - a lot of fun.
Subscribe to LADbible's YouTube channel to see new episodes of The Gap every Wednesday.
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