Date of release: 30 June 2020
In this week’s blog I’m going to focus on the contributions of our 200 student nurses and midwives who have been deployed to work in the Trust during the pandemic.
I would like to give you a snapshot of their journey with the Trust. The students have been with us since April when, in response to the pandemic, they opted to come and work in the Trust on paid extended placements in order to deliver care to the rising number of patients admitted with COVID-19. For many, this was a difficult time for them and their families.
The students were allocated to clinical areas where they quickly became a valuable part of the teams they worked with. These have been unprecedented times for all of us, but for the students it has been particularly challenging. While becoming part of the staff, they also had to continue with their education to become registered nurses and midwives. Many have worked in areas providing care to patients with COVID-19, both in hospital and the community.
The students at the start of their third year and those in the second year - Clinical Support Workers - will be finishing their paid placements before returning to supernumerary status which will enable them to focus on their learning and continue in their programmes. We hope they will become permanent members of the Trust so we can make the most of the enthusiasm and dedication they have shown.
The third-year final placement students (Aspirant Nurses and Midwives) are now preparing to enter the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) register, which is a really exciting time in their careers. Many of them will have permanent roles in the Trust and we look forward to watching them progress while continuing to provide a valuable service to our patients.
Both Staffordshire University and Wolverhampton University thanked us for the nurses’ and midwives’ contribution and praised the speed at which they became part of their teams.
The feedback from students has been equally positive. One said: “I am currently a Band 4. I am gaining a lot of experience as I come to the end of my student nurse journey and I feel I am ready to take on the challenge of a Band 5 staff nurse thanks to the support from staff.”
Other students were equally complimentary about the support from staff and the universities. In addition, staff praised the students’ commitment in their training and work and said they would be welcome additions to the teams where they were based.
Comments have included:
- “The students have been remarkable at this time. They embraced the challenge of what is happening including COVID-19 and being withdrawn from university. They have all taken on the challenge of what COVID was and were not fazed at all. They all really settled in well within our team.”
- “The students have been fantastic. They have been an asset. The students should be recognised for their huge contributions they have made to the pandemic crisis. Not only have they stepped up but they have also had disruptions to their studies.”
I would like to thank them personally for their hard work and dedication during this challenging time. They have made a huge contribution to patient care and their colleagues. We look forward to them joining us as registered nurses and midwives on a permanent basis and continue their careers with us.