Walking the walk

Just how far do nurses go in the care of their patients?

Each month the NSWNA will highlight a key part of our claim with activities in facilities.

In March we will draw attention to how far experienced nurses go in caring for the local community.

Experienced nurses and midwives who volunteer to participate will wear pedometers to demonstrate the miles they walk in the course of a normal working day. Data from each participant will be collected over an eight-day period.

Vicki Chaplin, an RN8, from the emergency department at Westmead Hospital is one adventurous nurse who has put up her hand to don the pedometer.

‘Why the hell not? I do long treks during my 12-hour shifts. I’m on my feet all day. I thought it would be interesting to do,’ she said.

‘From emergency, you are always off to ICU or to the wards. It’s an area where you are always on your feet.’

Vicki says she supports the part of the NSWNA claim that seeks to reward experienced nurses.

‘We should reward experienced nurses. We carry the system. In ED you have to be on the ball or patients will die. We carry the responsibility for patient care, having more practice than the junior doctors or nurses. I encourage less experienced nurses to come to me if they have a problem with their patient care or conditions.’

Vicki has no illusions about what is required to win fairer pay and conditions. ‘There will be a lot of carrying on before we win,’ she said.

Wanted: fit nurses
We are looking for respected, experienced nurses to walk the wards with a pedometer and show what they’re worth.