The pandemic has shown the world how important nurses are in the health care sector.
WHO has declared 2020 the Year of the Nurse, and this year more than ever we see how important nurses are within the health care system. Nurses are often the first point of contact for patients. Our extraordinary team of home care nurses consists of 280 highly skilled professionals who provide medical care outside of a hospital setting, keeping patients safe at home.
This National Nursing Week we are showcasing a few of our wonderful nurses. Meet Genet Begashaw, a passionate nurse who loves providing care in the community.
1. When did you become a nurse?
I became a nurse in 2010 and have been an RN since 2014. I am now in the process of becoming a nurse specializing in wound, ostomy and continence care (NSWOC).
2.What’s unique about being a nurse in the community?
Unlike other health care settings I have practiced in, I believe community nursing is unique. As a community nurse I have the opportunity and responsibility of providing care in patient's home and/or clinic setting. Being in the intimate setting of a home, a nurse must consider the various determinants of the patient’s health. This stands in contrast to other health care settings where focus and management of current symptoms and disease processes dominate the care plan.
My ability to assess and treat patients in their home environment allows me to provide a holistic care plan that includes the patient’s family and caregiver(s). As a community nurse I am able to promote, advocate and coordinate access to specialized health care and resources. Thus, the community nurse is involved in prevention, health promotion, as well as disease management.
3.What do you wish more people knew about nurses?
I wish more people knew that nursing is not just a job for community nurses. Beyond administering medications, we nurses care about our patients' mental, social, environmental, nutritional, financial, and health literacy among other factors.
4.What is the most challenging part of the job?
Because of the unique involvement of the community nurse, there are challenges that I face as a community nurse. There are certain home environments that may not be safe for us to provide care. Such as unsafe drug injection practices, some verbal and physical aggression from patients and/or caregivers. As well as the moral dilemma when unable to meet all of my patient's health care needs and expectations.
5.What is the most rewarding part of the job?
Community nursing is rewarding as it allows us nurses to provide care that is consistent and continuous due to the chronicity of many of our patients' conditions. We are able to form therapeutic relationships that foster effective nurse-patient collaborations.
As well, there is a degree of independence and autonomy in decision making while consulting with others within the circle of care when necessary.
6.What patient/family has impacted your practice the most?
The patient that made the greatest impact on me is one who, although within the LHIN system, did not have family/social support, had no family physician, and failed to meet many of the determinants of health. He had many needs that were challenging to meet. In the process of trying to address one need, I was reminded of the reason I became a nurse in the first place.
7.What are some of your favorite activities to do outside of work?
Outside of work, I enjoy spending time with my family and friends. I like to take walks in parks and would like to get back to my love of reading for pleasure.
Join our nursing team
We are currently hiring passionate and dedicated nurses to join our team. View our current career opportunities and apply online today!