COVID-19 has hit us in all different ways, and as students, we are all managing and undergoing many challenges. However, it’s important during this time to not forget and thank the medical professionals who are risking their lives for others.
Since this change in normalcy, I wanted to know how a nursing major is not only being affected by this pandemic but what their thoughts are as they are soon to be medical professionals themselves. I spoke with Hale Bitner, a friend of mine who is a senior nursing major, to ask her some of my questions about this topic.
Q. Before everything happened, did you have any plans for internships or practicums? How have those plans been affected by COVID-19?
A. I did not have any plans for internships or practicums this summer. I am graduating,so I will be spending the beginning of the summer studying for the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX). COVID-19 has not affected my summer plans yet.
Q. Have your clinicals been affected?
A. Clinicals have been affected by COVID-19. The nursing department has supplied us with a virtual simulation nursing course that has simulated patients we must care for each week. We also have various written case studies we must work on every week as well. It has been difficult since we are unable to practice skills like we would have been able to on the clinical unit. We have a lot of written work to do now,and we are expected to sit in front of our computers to complete it from 1400 to 2200 two days a week. This has made a lot of us go “stir crazy,” but it’s either case studies/v-sims now or clinical again in the fall.
Q. Has this pandemic changed your desire or thoughts about becoming a nurse?
A. I will be the first to admit that it is scary to think about how infectious this disease is and how medical supplies have been limited across the country. However, this pandemic has made me wish I was out there in the hospitals caring for patients who need it most. I strive to be the nurse who is there for all my patients through thick and thin. We as nurses are able to make such a difference in a patient’s time during their hospital stay,and the world is now seeing why we are so important.
Q. All in all, how have you been affected as a senior and in general?
A. As a senior, it is absolutely devastating to think we may not be walking across the stage with our peers,and I think every senior can relate to that. However, social distancing is a necessary precaution we all need to take in order to keep each other healthy. I just hope by this time next year this will be nothing but a distant memory that we will never relive again.
I’d like to thank Hale for taking the time to answer these questions. It may be challenging to maintain our studies and education, but on the bright side, when she graduates we can say there will be one more brave soul who will help us in the medical field.