MyPersonal Experience with the two Paradigm Cases
Paradigm cases are often learning experiences since they presentcertain insights that one will apply in other scenarios too.Personally, I have experienced a number of paradigm cases that haverevealed how certain issues in the medical setting work. However,only two paradigm cases tend to stand out from the others that I haveexperienced. The first one occurred while I was on my internship whenI met Beth, a patient with advanced bone cancer. She had been placedon intensive medication, and the chemotherapy had resulted in someserious side effects that were painful. Apart from that, she keptworrying about her kids and what will happen if she dies. I had totake my time and talk to her and encourage her while insisting thatthe medication will work. All in all, the entire scenario revealedthe essence of caring and hope since I had to look after Beth. Apartfrom that, I also had to assure her that the treatment will work evenif it seemed impossible. In fact, the cancer was right in theadvanced stages, and the chances of the medication to work were nil,and there was the need to seek hospice care as opposed to the medicalapproach that we were using. I even urged her to look on the positiveside of the entire experience to deal with the stress that she wasundergoing. In the end, Beth died, and it was sad to find out thatall the caring was unable to help her. However, the experiencerevealed the need for caring and hope even where the impact of thetreatment seems minimal.
At one time, the hospital was experiencing a shortage of nurses, yet,they had a large number of patients that needed urgent medication.Being an intern, I did not have to undertake much of the work since Ionly had to help the registered nurse that I was assigned to. In thiscase, Jane was the registered nurse that the management had asked toact as my mentor. With the shortage of nurse, the management gave usa longer shift and a lower nurse-patient ratio. In fact, in thatparticular case, I had to deal with an increased number of tasks. Ihad to run around the wards during our shift just to finish all thetasks under my sleeve. For instance, some of the patients needed someassistance with their personal hygiene as well as their ambulationneeds. I also had to deal with the sterile dressing, catheterizationsand communicate any concerns that the patient had to the RN. Lastly,I was also expected to undertake other duties at the discretion ofthe RN. At the end of each day, I was stressed and suffered fromburnout. I even contemplated changing courses, but, it was too latefor such uninformed decisions. Instead, I decided to devise copingstrategies that helped me deal with the stress I was experiencing. Itwas a learning experience, and I keep using the same strategies indealing with work-related stress.
Beth’s casereveals a number of issues that insist on caring and hope since therewas the need to combine the two with the treatment approaches. Infact, I had to associate the treatment approaches with hope since thepatient needed the encouragement to face the complications withenough courage. Utne et al., (2013) even insists that “hopeis considered an effective coping strategy for oncology patientsbecause it provides adaptive power to help them get through difficultsituations, achieve meaning, and achieve desired goals” (2528).More importantly, hope was one of the key aspects that helped Bethunderstand that there was a chance of healing later. She had toadhere to the treatment goals to achieve the desired outcome as well.I was fully focused on helping her, and the encouragement was animportant element in guiding her through the entire session. Olssonet al., (2011) refers to the entire experienceas the “simulated hope” where the nurse has to insist onunrealistic expectations. In this case, Beth experienced side effectsthat arose from the chemotherapy, and she had to take painkillers toreduce the impact of the treatment. Apart from that, she was stressedsince she knew that she was going to die, and her kids will besaddened by her death. It was devastating, and it raised the need forimmediate intervention to prevent her from experiencing depression.Rawdin et al., (2013) even suggested that “hope is a key clinicaland perhaps therapeutic variable, affecting cancer patients`adjustment and coping skills, overall well-being, immune function,and quality of life” (167). In essence, hope also served as acoping strategy to reduce the stress that Beth was experiencing atthat specific time. It also acted as a therapeutic strategy thatshowed the essence of looking at the positive side of life and usingthat instinct to overcome the challenges they face.
The case of the staffing problem also raised a number of issues thatwas mostly stress and the coping strategies to reduce the emotionalburden. More specifically, the lower staffing ratio was a problem inthe medical setting since I did not have enough time to rest. Thehuge number of tasks was an emotional burden that even interferedwith my satisfaction and often Jane complained that I was too slow inundertaking some of the duties. In the process, I had to contemplatesome coping strategies to help in dealing with the stress and burnoutthat I was undergoing. I knew that the stress was affecting mepsychologically and that meant the use of emotional intelligencewould have prevented that. Por et al., (2011) said that emotionalintelligence “encompasses the human skills of empathy,self-awareness, motivation, self-control and adeptness inrelationships” (856). Emotional intelligence provided theself-control and the motivation to face some of the challengeswithout any fears instead. Occasionally, I even took some mentalbreaks and relaxed outside before returning to the ward units. Markand Smith (2012) even suggested the essence of having short sessionsto refresh the mind before proceeding with the other tasks as well.In fact, most of the coping strategies that I had created were moreeffective in reducing the stress and the burnout. Within no time, Iwas back on track and undertook the duties effectively without anyproblems. In most cases, nursing needs the accuracy in thedecision-making since any errors will affect the patient outcome.Hence, enough rest and emotional stability are some the elements thatwill ensure the success of the treatment approaches. The treatmentapproaches will be quite effective in reducing errors in thedecision-making process and ensuring that I offer the requiredassistance.
The two cases were learning experiences where I acquired a lot ofinsights on how to handle various issues in the medical setting. Morespecifically, Beth’s case revealed that there is need to associatecaring with hope. For instance, Beth was facing a hard time,especially the side effects of the chemotherapy and other medicationsthat she was taking. Hence, a bit of hope coupled with the caring wasall she needed. At that time, she was undergoing weight loss, hairloss, the ongoing tests as well as the fear of relapse that wasstressing her throughout the time she was on medication(Pulido‐Martos et al.,2012). I ended up looking on the positive side of life even if thecircumstances revealed otherwise. In most cases, the doctor showedthat the situation kept getting worse, and that devastated her. Onthe other hand, my experience with the Jane, the RN was also quiteenlightening, and I mastered a perfect way to deal with the stress.For instance, I had to focus on the positive sides of life and ensurethat I complete each of the tasks without complaining. In fact, I hadto break a task into smaller manageable bits to make it doable andreduce the stress and burnout associated with it. At times, I eventook mental breaks to relax and freshen up as well. Such steps werehelpful in ensuring that I have control over the stressful activitiesand proceeding with the remaining tasks (Richardson et al., 2012).All in all, the two personal paradigms were enlightening and providedbetter ways to work in such a setting.
Apart from the similarities between the two paradigm cases, they alsohad a number of differences that showed how they influenced thecurrent approaches that I use. First, Beth’s case was emotionallyinvolving but, it did not interfere with the decisions that I made.I played a neutral role of caregiver and a nurse that had to ensurethat she met each of the treatment goals. In fact, I was able to helpher during the entire process, and I gave her the hope that shewanted to reduce the severity of the complications that arose fromadvanced cancer. On the other hand, the staffing problem was a hugeemotional burden since it even affected the decisions that I made(Rustøen et al., 2011). At times, I even experience burnout becauseof the huge number of tasks that I had to deal with. It was clearly adevastating experience but, I was able to seek help through mycoping strategies. In this case, I was able to deal with the issues,and I was also expected to seek solutions to each of the problemsthat I was facing. The staffing problem was the reason behind thereduced accuracy in the decisions that I made while treating thepatients (Happell et al., 2013). More specifically, the differencebetween the two paradigm cases was the emotional involvement and theway that I handled each of the cases. All in all, the two casesprovided learning experiences where I was able to capture differentways of handling the pressures that come with the duties. From thatpoint, I have been able to adopt the same coping strategies when Iface some of the stressful activities. I have been able to fuse hopewith the caring approaches since it helps in assuring the patientsthat they will recover from the specific problems that they arefacing.
In conclusion, the two paradigm cases provided learning experiencesand from that point, I have applied hope and the coping strategies indealing with any stressful events. In fact, the two paradigm caseswere informational, and the Beth’s case showed how the cancerpatients have to undergo challenging times before they recover. Onthe other hand, I believed that it is important to fuse hope and theclinical care to ensure that the patient achieves the requiredoutcomes. The staffing problem also resulted in immense stress andburnout but, the specific coping strategies helped in dealing withall the issues and ensuring that I was heading in the right directionas well.
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