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Jane Bates: new year, new rules

While Brexit may not mean Brexit, New Year always means resolutions

While Brexit may not mean Brexit, New Year always means resolutions

It is dividing the population. One half is sinking into melancholic dread about the future, while others see an exhilarating view of a new horizon.

No, not Brexit, I’m talking about new year.

Personally, I don’t see much point in celebrating an arbitrary date on the calendar when we are all partied out after Christmas, but that’s just me.


Picture: iStock

And all those resolutions. This year, which will almost certainly be a challenging one for the NHS, we nurses should make our own.

  1. We resolve to go to the loo when we need to, even if some pipsqueak is threatening you with a ‘disciplinary’ if you leave the ward for a nanosecond. If you need a wee, you need a wee. This is enshrined in the International Declaration of Human Rights (and if it isn’t, it should be). No one can think straight with a full bladder. 
  2. We resolve that we will never assume a patient understands what we mean. For example, we will desist from asking for a ‘sample’ (urine, obviously) because over the years we have been presented with everything from lemonade to seminal fluid, and all points in between.
  3. We resolve that we will no longer take it for granted that the chair in front of us, the only chair available in the whole hospital, will be able to take the weight of that rather large patient. Believe me, it won’t.
  4. We resolve to set an example to the populace by resisting the ward chocolates. We will just say no. Except to the salted caramel ones, and those round ones with the squidgy middle. And the rest.

So that’s 2019 sorted then. And whether you love it or loathe it, happy new year, and may all your Brexits – and truffles – be soft ones.


Jane Bates is an ophthalmic nurse in Hampshire 

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