Warning: Invalid argument supplied for foreach() in /home/nclexion/public_html/wp-content/themes/jnews/class/ContentTag.php on line 47
My emotions are quite changeable at the moment, which is unsurprising considering the situation facing the country – indeed every country – and consuming practically every second of our attention.
I am disappointed with the public in general for stockpiling supplies, leaving older people and health and social care staff unable to find essentials when they need them.
I am frustrated with them for completely disregarding government advice – and bloody common sense – at the weekend for acting like it was a bank holiday rather than a global pandemic.
Although in fairness, government advice on going out ‘for exercise’ could have been clearer.
I am angry that there are people who think that it is acceptable human behaviour to steal hand sanitiser and masks from hospitals.
“Lack of progress on PPE and testing has led unions and even the regulator, the Nursing and Midwifery Council, to speak out”
I am furious with those who are so ignorant that they think it is okay to verbally, racially or physically abuse community nurses and other staff, spitting at them and labelling them “disease spreaders”.
And I am concerned and baffled that critical care nurses are still faced with a lack of personal protective equipment (PPE), especially FFP3 masks, and at the continued lack of testing for all staff.
Lack of progress on PPE and testing has led unions and even the regulator, the Nursing and Midwifery Council, to speak out, as well as nurses working in intensive care themselves.
Health secretary Matt Hancock – clearly a man under a lot of pressure himself – has this week promised that testing is being ramped up and that more PPE is being rolled out. It had better be.
In contrast, many things have brought a smile to my face over the last week, despite the circumstances. Here are just three examples.
As of Tuesday, 6,147 former nurses had signed up to return to practice and 1,800 final-year student nurses will be going into clinical practice early to help support their colleagues. Amazing and inspiring.
“What an incredible demonstration of a profession pulling together as one”
On an individual level, Molly Watts, a nurse in Southampton, has written and illustrated a short story to help explain the coronavirus to children in a bid to reduce fears and anxieties around the outbreak. Thoughtful, informed and creative.
On a personal level, I have received messages of support for the UK from nurses working in countries such as Italy and the US and have received many emails from nurses who want to write about their experiences and feelings. International collaboration in action.
What an incredible demonstration of a profession pulling together as one, which is even poignant given that 2020 was designated the International Year of the Nurse and Midwife. It truly will be now – although not in the way we had hoped or expected.
The government and the general public just need to shape up now and back health and social care staff to the hilt, by their actions and their verbal support.