Lightening the load

It is more important than ever for nurses to know how to cope with a demanding workload. Follow these practical suggestions to keep a cool head under pressure

It is more important than ever for nurses to know how to cope with a demanding workload. Follow these practical suggestions to keep a cool head under pressure.

Abstract

Sometimes it seems like a nurse’s work is never done. Safe staffing guidance is due this year, but no one expects a major improvement in nurses’ workloads any time soon. So how are nurses to cope?

Prioritisation is paramount in a fast-paced acute environment, says Nick Simpson, chief executive of health recruiter MSI Group.

‘Although working environments can differ dramatically, the fundamentals are the same. Prioritisation takes practice, and good nurses build their shifts around permanent fixtures on the schedule, such as breakfast, handover or consultant rounds. This agenda is then filled with flexible tasks, allowing time for admin,’ he says.

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This article was first published in print in Nursing Standard: volume 30, issue 26

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