This is a moan.
And not one I will apologise for.
In one hour
I will monitor oxygen saturation levels, take blood to assess arterial blood chemistry and make sure the patient's entrotracheal tube is situated appropriately.
I perform tracheal suction and note all settings on the ventilator are written down carefully..
Measurements of heart rate, rhythm, blood pressure, blood sugar, central venous pressure are monitored and infusions of insulin , noradrenaline, potassium and fluids are titrated accordingly.
There are three infusion pumps and six syringe drivers all working together.
Antibiotics have to be retrieved, checked, made up and given.
All fluids entering the patient via vein and nasogastric tube are measured carefully
Everything leaving the patient is monitored too.
Pupils are checked for a reaction with a pen torch and sedation levels assessed.
Visiting family are supported and a plan of care discussed .
The nurse looking after the man in the next bed is helped to turn her patient.
Another nurse asks me to check their drugs before they can be given.
I have not even started to look if paperwork such as the moving & handling assessments or the nutritional audit has been completed and I need to organise help to turn my patient in the next hour.
I also need to brush my patient's teeth but as yet have not had the time to do so.
All this in one hour, of an eleven and a half hour shift.
The day before Yesterday, a chirpy electrician fixed our water heater. The part he needed cost about 25 quid
His invoice for part and labour was £82. It took him an hour to drive to the wholesalers to retrieve the part, fix it and have an animated chat about his bad back.
Don't get me wrong I was grateful he came so quickly.
Winnie was in the vets literally a couple of minutes. She had a painkiller and an assessment
£40.00 quid! Again I was grateful for the input.
The electrician's labour cost ...fifty pounds for an hour's work?
The vets? .................................Thirty pounds perhaps for five minutes.
A band 5 nurse on intensive care? .........£14 an hour.