Last week was induction week at uni – we did a lot of paperwork, form filling and introductory things. Although it was exciting to be starting, we didn’t do anything much that was midwifery related.
That changed this week!
On Monday we did a whole day of the theory behind vital signs. Why and how we take pulses, resp rates, temperatures and blood pressures, how we use urinalysis and fluid balance charts and a recap of some infection control. A lot was covered, and I definitely felt like my experience as a maternity care assistant really helped here!
Tuesday was much tougher for me. A day of biology, covering the cell, the cell membrane and types of nutrient transport. By the end of the day my brain was fried. This wasn’t helped by the fact that we were given our Ongoing Achievement Records (OARs) today – these are the files in which we will record all our deliveries, antenatal and postnatal checks for the next 3 years – it’s quite daunting knowing just how much we have to cover!
I quite enjoyed my day off on Weds……!
Thursday and Friday were clinical skills days – putting what we had covered on Monday into practice.
Thursday was spent taking each others observations, learning about documentation and record keeping, aseptic technique and handwashing, and fluid balance charts.
Friday was antenatal themed – starting off with venepuncture. At work I would take about 30 blood samples a day on average, so I was pretty confident with this skill, although I have to say that the rubber arm used for training is nothing like taking blood from a real arm! I did manage to get ‘blood’ out though, which was a relief. It would have been a bit embarrassing had I not managed it! After a recap of observations and charting, we did some abdominal palpation – and that’s when I started to really feel like a student midwife! It was such a fascinating skill to learn, and it also gave us a chance to unravel some of the midwifery terminology around positioning. It makes much more sense when you can see it and feel it ‘in real life’ than it does on a piece of paper!
Over the weekend I have spent a fair bit of time recapping the cells and cell membrane and looking at the skeleton and muscle worksheets ready for this weeks biology lectures, as well as completing the online manual handling assessment needed before we undertake the practical session.
It’s all starting to feel a bit more real now, and I can see how the workload is going to steadily increase!