Nurses as Patients: the Stories of Two Woman Nurse Educators as Recipients of Nursing Care
In this research two nurse-patients have engaged in a conversation about theirexperience of ‘being nursed’. The project sets out to address the following questions:How might our experiences as nurses who have been hospitalised be drawn upon toinfluence positive changes in nursing practice? What effect might our experiences ofhospitalisation have on us as nurses and on our nursing practice?
The study utilises narrative as inquiry and the method of story telling andauto/biography to tell the stories of Maria (a pseudonym) and myself, the researcher.
This interpretive research has been informed by the feminist process and sits within apostmodern framework. Maria’s stories were audio taped and transcribed beforebeing prepared for analysis using ‘core story creation’, and the process of'emplotment' (Emden, 1998b). My reflective topical autobiographical narrative wasconstructed through the processes described by Johnstone (1999).
Three distinct qualities emerged from both of our experiences. The first,‘knowing as nurse-patient’ contains the three sub themes of ‘having knowledge’,‘expectations of being nursed’, and ‘knowledge gained’. The second distinct quality‘being nursed’ contains the two sub themes of ‘feeling safe and cared for’ and‘presencing’; and the third ‘not being nursed’ contains the four sub themes ‘feelingvulnerable’, ‘invisibility of nurses’, ‘getting out’ and ‘feeling let down’. The subtheme ‘getting out’ includes three additional sub themes of ‘wanting to get out andnot wanting to be there’, ‘leaving and the need for closure’ and ‘not wanting to goback’,This study on nurse-patients receiving nursing care will be useful for nurseeducators, students of nursing, and nurse clinicians. Nursing does make a differenceto patient care. For patients to receive therapeutic care new graduate nurses must bepreceptored/mentored by experienced nurses in supportive programmes. Suggestionsfor further research have been identified.