Thursday, February 26, 2009

Moving up, in one way

After showing interest, I've been appointed one of my unit's representatives on the Staff Nurse Professional Practice Council. This is a group of bedside nurses (as opposed to management) representing every unit and service in the hospital who gather to discuss policy, lobby for change, and serve as a communication link as part of a shared leadership model. Fancy words sure, but so far I'm seeing the value. Other services like nutrition or pharmacy can present to us, get nursing feedback, and together we can make make beneficial changes. It's also a forum where we can discuss matters both positive and negative with the Chief Nursing Officer.

As our unit is large and employs many nurses, we have two representatives, one from the day shift and one from nights. It should come as no surprise to my friends that I'm taken on this role; I tend to be an enthusiastic change agent. Flipping to daytime wakefulness once a month is no fun, but it's nice to get paid for an eight-hour meeting.

In reference to the title of this post, I'm moving up professionally in that I'm entrusted with representing my co-workers. At the same time, I'm a little frustrated that I haven't gotten the opportunity to advance clinically in the manner I'd like. They've only had one training class since I've gotten off orientation, but I really want to start taking kidney and liver transplant patients. They have special needs that vary from our standard patients, but having talked it through with experienced nurses I should be able to handle them without a problem. It's just a matter of being offered the class and checked off on the knowledge. I also would like to get checked off to run two pieces of equipment that are frequently used, CVVHD units (continuous dialysis) and balloon pumps (support heart function). There's a waiting list for the training of course and more tenured staff are ahead of me, but I'm champing at the bit for something more.

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