Let’s Celebrate Sub-Acute Nurses
After the doctors have gone and the trauma and acute care teams have done their job, it’s the day to day care of the nursing team that supports us on our road to recovery. To show our appreciation for the dedication and compassion of nurses everywhere, we celebrate International Nurses week from the 6th to the 12th of May. The celebration ends with Nurses day on May 12th in honour of the mother of nursing as we know it today, Florence Nightingale.
The story of the sub-acute nurse
There are many different specializations within the field of nursing, acute care nursing and palliative care to name a few, but the sub-acute nurse is a bit of a super-hero wearing many different nursing capes.
We often overlook just how important the nursing team is when we’re at our lowest, so let’s take a moment to consider just how valuable they are to our overall well-being.
The story begins in a hospital. After facing a life-threatening event, such as a heart attack or life-saving surgery after an accident, or after spending some time fighting off an infection, you’re discharged from the Intensive Care Unit. The long process of healing now begins, and this is where the sub-acute nursing team steps in.
Sub-acute care is a bit of a cross between acute care and long-term care. The nursing team is available 24 hours a day to carefully monitor your progress and take immediate action should your condition deteriorate. However, healing doesn’t happen overnight. Getting back on your feet can take a long time, and the sub-acute nurse is the one that’ll be with you every step of the way.
However, sub-acute nursing isn’t restricted only to hospitals. The sub-acute nurse will be by your side in assisted living facilities and can even provide care at home. They are there to dispense medication, manage nutrition, exercise, and socialization if needs be, and coordinate care. For chronic conditions, like arthritis, or long-term health concerns, like cancer, they’ll be the ones helping with pain management and adapting to a life that suddenly has some new limitations.
The sub-acute nurse is more than just a care-giver. They advocate for their patients, protecting their rights, especially when the patients are unable to do so themselves. They are educators guiding both the family and the patient to ensure the best possible care and outcomes. They act as advisors, making sure those in their care get specialist treatment and psychological support should the need arise.
Nursing is considered one of the most trusted professions in the world, and it’s not hard to see why. The nurse is the one who’ll be with you when you’re at your most vulnerable. Their main concern is your well-being, and they share in both the victories and disappointments of those in their care.
Every single one of us will need the help and care of a nurse at least once in our lives, yet the value of nurses, not just in the daily care of their patients, but also their input in health care policies, is still undervalued throughout most of the world.
The Lady with the Lamp as she was known by the soldiers in the Crimean war, gliding from bed to bed, ensuring the comfort of her patients, was considered a pioneer and the founder of modern nursing. Her strength, compassion, fighting spirit, and desire to improve the lives of those in her care live on in nurses today. So, the next time you find yourself in the care of a nurse take some time to show your appreciation. They deserve it!