Business News

Compassion in the community: What life is like on the frontline

Claire Carmichael (pictured), who graduated from Birmingham City University, is newly-qualified and working in the community as a GP nurse. She could hardly have expected to be starting her career in the middle of a deadly pandemic and it has meant many unexpected changes. Here she gives a moving and caring description of life on the frontline in the battle against Covid-19.

a GP nurse. My year 2020 started amazingly and I couldn’t of been happier – and I’m still happy, don’t worry! However, it’s now turned into a


time of uncertainty. That’s not just for me, I think I can safely say I speak for the whole nation of healthcare professionals and keyworkers right now out there. We are all risking our own lives and our families’ lives (or health) to care for others. Now, I am a GP nurse in the

middle of this pandemic. We have cut our clinics right down and only seeing a list of urgent appointments, which may differ from those working in the acute sector. Urgent classes things such as

wound management, leg ulcers, compression bandaging (as patients are at risk of infection and sepsis never mind Covid-19), then we have our baby immunisations, urgent at risk smears tests, ECG’s for chest pain, blood tests for things such as medication monitoring. All other services have been moved to telephone and video consultations where possible and only seen if absolutely needed in clinic to reduce the risk of spreading Covid-19.

s a newly-qualified nurse (NQN) I was excited to be going into my dream job as

I was due to go on my

fundamentals of primary care course in May, which has now been put on hold until September sadly. For me, my clinics have reduced massively - I only have around three patients a day now in a 10-hour shift. But the good news is I have

more time to see each person and make sure they are ok and have the right support during this tough time. There’s plenty of time for me to stock up all the rooms and do a thorough clean down as well.

‘There needs to be far more kindness and compassion at times like these and I’m glad to be doing my bit for our patients right now’

I am now ringing patients and

making sure they are ok, that they have enough support and giving out telephones numbers of helplines if needed. We are all being reduced greatly at the minute, as management want us well rested and well ready for when this virus peaks because that’s when we will be called to help much more; things such as home visits will be put into place for

those patients who can’t get into hospital. We need to be the ones helping

those patients at that time. I’ve seen many comments from ward nurses on social media recently saying: “Why can’t you get the community GP nurses in to the wards?” But then who will look after the patients who can’t get in to hospital, those patients who have been told, “sorry we are prioritising someone else over you right now as they have more chance of survival”. Sorry that is so blunt but that is exactly what is happening. There needs to be a lot of nurses out in the community for those patients too and this is what my role will eventually involve. One of my friends said recently:

“Covid Compassion is needed the most right now, not just your clinical nursing skills” and they were right. There needs to be far more

kindness and compassion at times like these and I’m glad to be doing my bit for our patients right now. It is so lovely to see people coming together right now out there. I have seen people take to social

media and share their stories of how they have been helped by someone or they have helped their neighbours out. I have witnessed the kindness of

stores, supermarkets and companies giving freebies to

healthcare staff across the country and on 26 March, at 8pm was the first time everyone stood outside their doors or hung outside their windows to give a huge round of applause to healthcare workers. I didn’t expect my street to be

doing this, but I went to have a look and was so shocked to see everyone clapping, cheering, car horns beeping, boat horns going off and even a firework set off. It was amazing. I can’t explain the feeling this

brought, not only to me but I imagine everyone out there right now doing their bit to help in this crisis and I imagine it was a lovely motivation booster for many people out there struggling right now. It’s times like this when

communities really come together and share their kindness for one another, it’s beautiful to see. My clap and cheer didn’t go out

to just healthcare staff but to those we don’t hear about in the news: police, firefighters, military, supermarket and shop workers, transport staff, carers, support workers, and many, many, more. A huge thank you to everyone out there, whatever your role in this – thank you. Keep being amazing, keep going – you’ve got this.


Page 1  |  Page 2  |  Page 3  |  Page 4  |  Page 5  |  Page 6  |  Page 7  |  Page 8  |  Page 9  |  Page 10  |  Page 11  |  Page 12  |  Page 13  |  Page 14  |  Page 15  |  Page 16  |  Page 17  |  Page 18  |  Page 19  |  Page 20  |  Page 21  |  Page 22  |  Page 23  |  Page 24  |  Page 25  |  Page 26  |  Page 27  |  Page 28  |  Page 29  |  Page 30  |  Page 31  |  Page 32  |  Page 33  |  Page 34  |  Page 35  |  Page 36  |  Page 37  |  Page 38  |  Page 39  |  Page 40  |  Page 41  |  Page 42  |  Page 43  |  Page 44  |  Page 45  |  Page 46  |  Page 47  |  Page 48  |  Page 49  |  Page 50  |  Page 51  |  Page 52  |  Page 53  |  Page 54  |  Page 55  |  Page 56  |  Page 57  |  Page 58  |  Page 59  |  Page 60  |  Page 61  |  Page 62  |  Page 63  |  Page 64  |  Page 65  |  Page 66  |  Page 67  |  Page 68  |  Page 69  |  Page 70  |  Page 71  |  Page 72  |  Page 73  |  Page 74  |  Page 75  |  Page 76  |  Page 77  |  Page 78  |  Page 79  |  Page 80