Why gerontology Nursing is not for me.

When I’m thinking about my options in the nursing profession after I graduate in 2020 working with the elderly doesn’t seem to stick out for a career for me, it makes me wonder why there is no appeal to it like other nursing for not only me but other young graduate nurses that come out of training with their BN (bachelor of nursing) they are always wanting to get into the DHB’s (district health Boards) as nurses in hospitals.

So the New Zealand nurses organisation (NZNO) Gerontology nursing section describes it as. “Gerontology Nursing is an evidence based nursing specialty practice that addresses the unique physiological, psychological, developmental, economic, cultural and spiritual needs related to the process of ageing and care of older adults”. [1]**.

To be honest I don’t blame people who want to work in a hospital rather than aged care as there’s more scope to be able to move specialties within a hospital setting. And I understand why new graduates are keen to work in hospitals other than aged care. Last year I went to a job interview for a HCA (Health care assistant) role at a local hospital and now hearing what people can do within the scope of just being a HCA in a big hospital each day at work is varied depending where you are for example keeping watch on a person who is overdosed and tried to kill themselves to watching over an old person who is a fall risk you don’t know what the next shift will bring until you are at work.

But please don’t get me wrong people who work in Aged care are wonderful and smart, I work with a Nurse who is so interested in wound care you should see some of the pictures of wounds she had put up the staff room…..That’s another story. She is the type of nurse I would love to be also she is the one who got me into thinking nursing is where I want to go as she is not only passionate about wound care but she is caring just like a nurse should be, but I guess it is the type of area where you do have to find you something that sparks your interests in the field like the Nurse who I work with has.

But new graduates don’t see the scope Gerontology Nursing brings and they can only see nurses handing out pills and putting bandages on legs and creating person centred care plans. They don’t see the scope of work and different aspects of Gerontology Nursing can bring and to be honest I’m one of these people who cannot see the good in Gerontology Nursing.

As a workforce how do you make Gerontology Nursing relevant and cool for the new graduates and get them engaged in a career working as a aged care nurse. And also who’s responsibility is it to make it engaging and fun to work within aged care, the company you applying to or is it the NZNO or even the training institutes making it more engaging for the new graduates.

I myself still don’t know weather Gerontology Nursing is the way to go for me, I think it could be something though out my gap year and three years training I might change my mind and see the light of Gerontology Nursing is the place for me. Or be one of those students who go into hospital nursing.

1American Nurses Association (2010) Gerontological Nursing: Scope and Standards of Practice. Nurses Books. Org, Silver Spring, Maryland, USA

** To see full verson of the definition http://www.nzno.org.nz/groups/sections/gerontology

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