“Paul and I are a team,” Shania, BSN, RN, begins.
Shania has worked with Paul (age 8) for almost four years and cares deeply about the quality of his care. To help train and educate other nurses, Shania works as a Nurse Preceptor for Independence Plus’ Home Nursing Residency program.
“Paul has a lot going on, so he’s great for our Nurse Residents,” Shania explains. “He also loves to play and engage with others—after all, he’s just a little boy.”
In addition to working with Paul, Shania is in school to obtain a Master of Science in Nursing. Scheduled to graduate in December, Shania says, “There’s so much to learn, and I hope I can bring what I’m learning now back to Independence Plus.”
Shania loves being a Nurse Preceptor. She spends a few shifts every month teaching newly graduated nurses how to provide care for Paul’s complex medical needs. Shania has high standards for every nurse who walks through Paul’s door, but she wouldn’t have it any other way.
“I always tell Paul that I need him to be healthy, but a little on the sick side when the Nurse Residents come,” she laughs. “We want to challenge the Nurse Residents!”
Shania’s number one priority is safety, so she makes a point to ask the Nurse Residents a lot of questions—about diagnoses, anatomy and physiology, and most importantly, she always asks “Why?”
“The head to toe assessment takes us about 90 minutes,” Shania explains. “After each step, I want them to really think about what they’re doing, so I ask a lot of questions: What is it? What should you do next? Why?”
Selina, RN, a graduate of our Home Nursing Residency program, works very closely with Shania and says, “Shania is not only a great nurse, but also a great teacher, friend, and advocate for Paul, his family, and all of the nurses on his case.”
Focusing on the Basics
“I always stress the importance of infection control and hand washing.” Shania continues, “You’d be surprised how every single action you take can impact the patient—positively or negatively.”
In addition to Paul’s care, Shania teaches the Nurse Residents to focus on what makes Paul happy, like going to school, making new friends, playing, and being outside. Shania wants to do more than just train the Nurse Residents to provide quality care—she wants them to learn how to bring joy to Paul’s life.
“Playing with Paul didn’t come naturally to me, I had to learn by watching Paul’s mom and mimicking her playtime ideas,” Shania explains.
Today, Shania is full of ideas for Paul—from baking cupcakes during St. Patrick’s Day and turning his bed into a tent and roasting fake marshmallows to putting up lights around his room for the holidays and introducing him to new friends at school.
“I’m always going to have something to learn, even when I have 20 or 30 years of nursing experience,” Shania says with confidence.
What Our Residents Said…
Deb Chamberlain, BSN, RN, Home Nursing Residency Manager, provides two weeks of comprehensive in-office training and education to initially prepare our Nurse Residents to care for our ventilator-dependent patients. And then Deb sends the Nurse Residents out into the field to learn from field nurses—like Shania. Since the program’s inception in October 2013, Shania has helped train some of our strongest Nurse Residents.
Shania encourages our Residents to think. She tells them, “If Deb was watching you, would she be happy with the way you were providing care?”
“I look at the Nurse Residents as co-workers,” Shania says. “I love seeing their confidence and skill set grow as they progress through the program.”
Jamie, RN, who recently graduated from our Home Nursing Residency, says “Shania is one of the most compassionate, competent, professional nurses I have ever worked with. I wouldn’t be where I am today without her guidance and confidence in my ability.”
Do you want to learn more about our Home Nursing Residency program? If so, click here. If you’re interested in becoming a Nurse Preceptor, contact Independence Plus at firstname.lastname@example.org.