My overall experience at the urgent care clinic was
very well. Lisa the RN and also the NP were very friendly and made sure to
include me in everything that was going on. It was nice to see the two of them
work so well with each other which must be in order to efficiently and
effectively take care of all the patients coming in. It was interesting to
watch Lisa do proper age assessments on all the patients and incorporate
parents when needed. Every assessment I watch and do, can only benefit my
future and help me become a better nurse for my patients. This experience
really made me see how truly important getting annual physicals and follow ups
are. As I become a nurse I will make sure to emphasize how important these
screenings are. Prevention is key!
DCIS stands for ductal carcinoma in situ. This is
the most common type of non-invasive breast cancer. The cancer starts inside
the milk ducts, but doesn’t spread beyond the ducts into any normal surrounding
breast tissue. This type of cancer is not life-threatening, but can increase
the risk for developing invasive breast cancer later on (DCIS, 2017).
A female cancer survivor in her 70’s had come in
for similar symptoms and the other patients that day, however when her x-rays
came back the NP had notices a nodule on one of her breasts. This reiterates
the priority the screenings and follow up with doctors is. I’m very interested
in oncology so I had asked the NP and Lisa more about this. Lisa had previously
worked in the oncology department for multiple years and is very knowledgeable
about different types of cancer. With that knowledge she had learned, she
believed that this woman may have DSIS cancer.
There are many diseases that can be prevented by
having a healthy lifestyle. The purpose of health screenings, is to find
medical conditions and diseases. These screenings are very important not only
to find medical conditions but they can help people learn about the risk
factors such as high blood pressure and obesity can lead to heart diseases.
Knowing the risk factors allow people to make the appropriate lifestyle changes
for prevention. Health screenings can also track your overall health over time
(Health Screening, n.d.).
Health Screenings and Prevention
It’s important for each patient to understand when
prescribed an antibiotic they must be sure to take all of the medication. Only
using part of the prescription means it can only treat part of the infection.
Not finishing the medicine can cause resistant bacteria to develop (CDC, 2018)
In every room and in the hallway of the clinic,
there were signs about the difference of bacterial infections and viruses. Many
patients think an antibiotic can cure any sickness which is far from the truth.
Antibiotics can cure bacterial infections, not viral infections. Viruses such
as the common cold, most coughs and the flu cannot be treated by an antibiotic (CDC,
Teaching and Learning
For most of the patients seeing in the clinic today, the NP
had ordered a chest x-ray to make sure nothing was going on in their lungs that
we couldn’t see. A throat culture was also taken of many of the patients. A
throat culture is a test used to diagnose bacterial infections such as strep
throat, pneumonia, tonsillitis, whooping cough, and meningitis (Harkin and Wu, 2016). The throat
culture was done by the nurse. She had swabbed the back of the patient throat
and then we tested the swab for any of those bacterial infections. Many of the
patients seeing were sent home with an antibiotic.
There were a variety of patients aging from a few months old
to some people in their 80’s. Each were treated with patient centered care. It’s
very important for the nurse to be knowledgeable about the different age groups
and how to communicate with them best. Not only does the nurse need to be knowledgeable
about different age groups but seasonal health issues also. In summer, the
clinic will frequently see clients with allergies but specifically right now,
is the cold and flu season. Most of the patients that came into the urgent care
clinic had a chief complaint of a cough, sore throat, chest cold, painful ears
and pressure in the sinuses. Knowing the seasonal changes can help the nurse
treat the patients more efficiently and can have enough supplies to do the
appropriate assessment and labs.
Patients Seeing in Clinic
are multiple roles that an RN plays in an urgent care setting. They work under
general supervision of a Physician, PA, or NP. Activities change daily and from
each individual patient. They may vary from triage, answering phones, taking
medical histories, perform lab work, etc. The nurses must have a high level of
communication skills to consistently receive and greet patients, visitors, and
staff members all in a professional manner.
Role of An Urgent Care Nurse