About Me

undergrad RN
I'm a twenty-something Canadian student. After stumbling through a few years of college, I finally managed to get into the nursing school of my dreams, where I hope to graduate in 2012 with a nursing baccalaureate degree. I want to offer an honest look into how a modern nurse is educated, both good and bad. Eventually I hope to compare my education to my day-to-day career and see how it holds up. Whatever happens, it should be somewhat entertaining. Find me on allnurses.com!
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Thursday, June 12, 2008

A small commentary...

On the effect that a proper uniform can have.

A couple of weeks ago, I went to the 'Gina Doc for my semi-annual exam. The clinic is small, friendly, and pro-female, so I really like going there. It's got a casual sisterhood vibe. Actually, the first time I went there and an RN consulted with me on my sexual history, I got my first real glimpse into the world of nursing beyond the hospital. It seems like a great job! She was wearing some business casual slacks and jewelry, and had a little office overlooking the park. No shiftwork for her, either. That clinic is a we-close-early-on-Friday kind of place.

So getting more to the point: I went for an exam a couple of weeks ago, and a different nurse escorted me back to the exam room. This nurse was a far cry from my first nurse. It didn't even occur to me that she was a nurse, honestly.

First impression: big woman in smaaalll clothes. Tighty jeans and spaghetti strap tank. Open-toe heels, bangles, and loud rings on every finger. Lovehandles showing, complete with tramp stamp, and was that a thong strap? All-around yikes. Nice lady. Did NOT get the memo about her work attire.

Which leads me to a point brought up on I am a Nursing Student:

It always amazes me how willing people are to get naked for you once you wear a hospital uniform. I've had a good number of patients sofar this semester, and not a one objected to me lifting their shirts to listen to their chest, or helping them put on clean undies and a gown. Of course, they have no reason to worry about me seeing them naked; I am a professional. I'm going to see a million before I'm done. But what is it that makes them trust me with their body more than they would any other stranger? Surely it isn't the purple uniform... though I'm certain they'd be more uneasy if I was there wearing jeans and a tee-shirt.

Until my nurse introduced herself as one, I had no idea what her role in this clinic might be. I thought she was a receptionist who needed a visit from Stacy and Clinton. My mind, already attuned to the healthcare industry, did not jump to "Healthcare Professional".

This is not a commentary on how she did her job. She was nice, sounded professional, and she obviously has some brains.

This is a commentary on the power of first impressions. I would not have felt as comfortable dropping my pants for her as I would have for someone in scrubs, regardless of level of training. I would, at first blush, rather have a student in scrubs assist in my exam than an RN dressed like a hoochie mama.

Strange, no?

[Picture Credit]


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