There are matters of life and death in your hands. You can picture yourself in the scrubs and gloves, wielding a stethoscope over a patient in need. You’ve always wanted to be a nurse, but now that a global pandemic has turned everything up in the air, you wonder if is the right time.
Pursuing nurse registration is a life-changing decision. You take on a serious responsibility in the nursing profession. Now as the COVID-19 pandemic brings new dynamics to the job, nurse registration in Ireland offers new opportunities and new challenges – but it can still offer a promising future.
Nursing in Ireland: A Changing Landscape
The COVID-19 pandemic has no doubt changed lives and jobs all around the world, and that is true for nursing in Ireland. There are about 78,000 midwives and nurses in Ireland. The pandemic is opening up space for thousands more healthcare jobs. Medical facilities are scrambling to cope with the influx of patients over the coming cold and flu season, making new positions.
New nurses who want to jump right into the breach will find ample opportunity as the Irish Medical Organization and Health Service Executive come to agreements about adding thousands of new positions for winter 2020-21 during the pandemic. These positions will allow new nurses to learn on their feet and immediately get involved in front line healthcare work. Learn more about applying for these positions with MedDoc.
Meanwhile, general care medicine has transitioned some roles to telehealth options. This opens many new doors for nurses. Before they may have been limited to physical locations such as hospitals or general practitioner’s offices. Now they can work with people at a distance.
As older patients self-isolate, they may rely more heavily on the medical staff for social interaction when they do see them. A nurse who is a “people person” may find his or her job to feature more social interaction now alongside medical care. This can be a great option if you are looking for a job with emotional caregiving aspects.
Even amidst this changing landscape, there are 5 reasons you will want to pursue nursing registration now.
1) You Really Want to Help
Around the world, many have felt the call to assist with the COVID-19 pandemic. Their willingness to help in this trying time has been much appreciated across society.
Others, even those without skills, have felt the same call and decided to prepare to help as soon as they can, so as to be ready for the next need for care professionals, and are pursuing training.
It is admirable to want to help during the COVID-19 pandemic. It is important that you really want to help if you are getting involved in nursing during the pandemic as it is a great responsibility
Some ways you can show that you are ready to help with COVID-19 patients is to:
- make certain your qualifications are a match for what hospitals and clinics most need
- file all registration paperwork and applications properly and promptly
- be willing to take a less glamorous job that may help even more people
- prepare to work long, exhausting shifts
- be in the best health you can be, including sleeping enough, eating healthily, and getting enough exercise
- be realistic about what you can offer your job in a time like – if you have other commitments, can they take a back seat for some time?
- agree with your family about the risk you will be taking and how it might affect their lives and health
2) It Can Get You Out of the Hospital
Perhaps you have been planning to pursue Irish nurse registration for a while now, but were not looking forward to a hospital job.
Rural medicine needs nurses who can live closer to see patients now more than ever. As the older population remains in their homes, those who live far from cities need medical care to be available to them.
A big part of nursing is the social attentions that patients receive from their caregivers when they otherwise may not. Isolation becomes a widespread issue for those at risk for COVID-19. They must remain quarantined, and nurses must pick up the slack and bring some human contact to their patients as well as care.
If you are prepared to be accessible 24/7 in rural locations that may not have other care options, rural medicine may be what you were looking for.
Rural medicine offers a real chance to get connected with a community and take on a role of responsibility for its citizens. Investigate rural medicine positions if you are looking for a round-the-clock, small-village type of position.
3) You Want to Take Advantage of New Funding
The Irish Medical Organization is fighting to get extra positions open for winter 2020-21. The Health Service Executive is planning for 12,000+ new medical staff for the winter.
As COVID-19 cases undoubtedly go up and the regular flu season sets in, accepting these positions will mean a guaranteed job for the foreseeable future. However, it does not mean that position will exist forever.
Taking advantage of these extra positions now is a smart move. These are learning and networking opportunities. Though the positions may not be needed post-pandemic, young nurses can meet and connect with supervisors and mentors.
After the pandemic, they can move other more permanent positions thanks to the experience gained in these extra positions.
These new positions will also be safer as €1.5 billion has been allocated for personal protective equipment. Irish nurses have made up almost 1/3 of the country’s cases of COVID-19, and there has been a serious push to extend funding for proper equipment.
4) Variety of Positions Available
Pursuing nurse registration during a pandemic does not mean you will automatically be signed up to work with pandemic patients. As staff moves around trying to cope with the influx in patients due to the pandemic, other roles may be left open.
Now is the time to pursue one of the nursing roles you are truly interested in.
Even in a pandemic, women are still having babies. Their care is even more important as they enter medical facilities under the shadow of the virus. Registering as a nurse-midwife during the pandemic allows new nurses to get involved in a career field that always has patients.
Due to the caution surrounding pregnant women and COVID-19, nurse midwives will still find their day-to-day work affected by the pandemic, though not dictated by it.
For those looking for a position that is outside of normal scheduling, considering urgent care clinics may be a stellar option. These are typically overnight and weekend care options, when general practitioners are off the clock.
When hiring, urgent care clinics look for nurses with general and emergency knowledge. For those new to Ireland, urgent care clinics are a jumping-off point professionally.
Corporate Health Jobs
If you are interested in learning more about supporting occupational health while conducting thorough health screenings, corporate health may be the field for you. Corporate health nurses make sure that employees comply with health safety at work and give them check-ups to keep track of any issues.
Working as a corporate nurse may offer a more regular schedule than hospitals, clinics, or rural postings. Due to the nature of the job, there is less likely to be trauma cases. Consider corporate healthcare for a less demanding schedule.
Student Health Jobs
As schools reopen, student health nursing jobs are attractive options for those who are looking to work outside of traditional medical practices.
Working with young people can not only aid them during acute injuries and illness but also help shape healthy decisions for a lifetime. From elementary school to university, student health remains essential to their well-being and ability to learn.
5) You Want to Get Experience Unlike Anything Else
Working with COVID-19 patients is not only a beautiful sign of your dedication to medicine and your fellow countrymen, it will also prepare you for any urgent medical event that will come up in your future career.
Getting your foot in the door with a healthcare position during the COVID-19 pandemic is a great way to learn on the job and see what you’d like to do when it comes to medicine.
Those who are willing to work with COVID-19 patients during a global pandemic must be ready for a fast-paced, learn-on-your-feet sort of position. As regulations, treatment, and understanding of the virus and its impact on the human body shifts daily, new nurses attending to COVID-19 patients must be willing to quickly pivot in their treatment and understanding of the condition.
They must also take on the job with an understanding of the risk it poses to themselves and be ready to keep going when the job becomes difficult.
It will not be easy. You will come home tired every day. There will be creases in your face from your N95 mask.
However, you will rest easy knowing you did the most a person can do to try to defeat COVID-19.
Pursue Nurse Registration Today
If you have a suitable background, are looking for a career change, and are willing to take on the challenge of nursing during a uniquely challenging time for medical professionals, consider nurse registration today.
Visit the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland (NMBI) website for more information or reach out to MedDoc about registering today.