ABSTRACT

Almost all newly qualified nurses need to 'Watch out for the six-month tears!'. This stage is usually triggered by a critical situation. The nurse may be looking after a patient who suddenly becomes very unwell. They then realise that they don't know what to do. During the first six months, take the time to identify any gaps in his/her knowledge and make every effort to fill them. The following are courses that the nurse may wish to consider during the first six months to a year post qualification: risk management and accountability, venepuncture, cannulation, IV drug administration, pumps and epidurals, high-dependency course, and ALERT/emergency situation course. Even if the nurse has received the recommended training, the nurse may not have performed the skill for a period of time and are therefore not practised at the task, and thus not competent. Again, the nurse will be held accountable if the the task is performed incorrectly.