Kirsty Jenkins Blog (Trainee Nursing Associate – March 2020 Intake)
A week in the life of a trainee nursing associate includes a whole heap of organisational and time management skills. For our cohort of March 2020, we unknowingly took the steps into what was to become an unprecedented time, Covid-19 had taken hold and our steps into an unknown adventure to expand our depth and breadth of knowledge began.
So, when asked to write about the role of the Trainee Nursing Associate I first want you to understand the bare foundation of what goes into becoming a Nursing Associate. Trainee Nursing Associates bridge the gap between healthcare assistants and nurses, we are not HCAs and we are not nurses, we are a profession in our own right. As Trainees we are here to advocate for our role, for our hard work and for the right to own our own profession, we are Nursing Associates! We are a cog in the wheel of the well-oiled institution that was founded years before our time.
My weeks’ timetable includes 22.5hrs in hub (GP Practice), 7.5hrs in university (remote online), 7.5hrs of spoke (Placement)and an additional 7.5hrs of protected learning time in Hub. This is the standard requirement to fulfil the criteria for completing the apprenticeship TNA role. I was eager to get stuck in. I could future proof my end goal and see the glory of the cap, gown, and certificate for achieving my dream! I had been given the chance to step into this adventure and I was under no illusion that this was going to be one whirlwind roller coaster! Its fast paced, its hard work, ensuring I manage to complete apprenticeship and university standards, completing a full working week, completing academic work, micromanaging a family and motherhood are just a few of the undertakings I face whilst striving to be the Nursing Associate I know I can be.
My days are rolled into military styled operations that consist of checklists and roll calls to ensure every target to get through that day has been met with a high five and a cuddle from my children to say we’ve done it! We have completed another day! Each day is a new challenge faced with ups, downs, tears, joy, love, care, compassion, resilience and enthusiasm and a team of people behind you supporting you and guiding you through the good days and the bad. There’s a saying that strives my inner positivity “The struggles, challenges and obstacles that it takes to succeed in life is what makes success more valuable” to ensure I keep on track, I keep focused and I push forward. Nursing associates are the brothers and sisters of support because they know your story.
We are Trainee Nursing Associates leading the forefront for making our role more visible and better understood.
Take Care: Stay Safe