Making The Case For Longer Studies

Recently there’s been talk about the Malaysian Nursing Board phasing out the Diploma in Nursing programme. As a result, soon all future nursing students that want to practice the profession in the country has to complete a four-year degree (Bachelor of Science in Nursing).

Many parties have been very vocal about this, citing that many nurses cannot afford the extra costs it takes to study for four years instead of the usual two for a diploma. Some students get into nursing for that reason; it offers a quick pathway to work in a respectable profession, without the added burden of a pre-university programme after completion of secondary school.

While I understand that some nurses have to support their families ASAP, I’m here to argue that there is a hidden benefit to all nurses being required to do their degree in order to be registered practitioners.

That benefit is the extra 2-4 years of age that nurses have upon graduation.

Older… Wiser?

A few days ago there was news of a 19-year old girl who will become the youngest medical doctor in Malaysia this year. The prodigy completed her secondary education at the age of 14, enrolling straight into an Australian pre-U programme, followed by medical school.

While I applaud her achievements (it is nothing to make light of), for the rest of us entering the healthcare workforce at 19 is not the best of ideas.

A doctor fresh out of medical school at the age of 25 is six years older than 19, and will have six years of extra life experiences that will make him or her relate better to patients.

The healthcare line, as we all know, is riddled with a lot of challenges and difficulties that are difficult to teach in training colleges. There are unexpected obstacles from patients, their relatives, and colleagues that are difficult to circumnavigate without emotional maturity. When these are not handled well they lead to burnouts and depression.

Forcing the degree programme for nurses rather than diploma grants student nurses extra time to prepare themselves. Most of the time, maturity comes with age. Being a nurse (or a doctor for that matter) is an arduous endeavor in itself. There will be times when you have to react to difficult situations requiring you to make a choice. Maturity grants the wisdom to make the right ones.

The healthcare line, as we all know, is riddled with a lot of challenges and difficulties that are difficult to teach in training colleges.

Being sure about oneself

As a patient, you would want nurses or doctors who are sure of themselves for your treatment. You want those who believe in what they do and believe in the importance of their work. Not the reluctant ones.

It is common for healthcare practitioners to leave the profession within the first 5 years of working. An extra few years of study provides the extra time to contemplate on whether this career path is really for them or not. This creates better rounded nurses and doctors.

Better clinicians

Better rounded nurses and doctors, who can find the balance between their personal growth and career, make for better clinicians. They are more likely to innovate and push medicine forward. This is why countries like the US and Sweden require prospective medical school students to have a Bachelor’s degree beforehand. These countries have the most number of medical innovations in history.

Removal of bad habits

Better rounded nurses and doctors make for better clinicians.

For nurses, making BSN degrees mandatory in order to be registered means an addition 4-5 years of study; 1-2 years for a pre-university course (like STPM) and another 4 years for the degree. Contrast this with immediately hopping on the diploma programme for two years after school.

The work involved to obtain a degree is very hard. It can only be done by being mentally sound, organized, and effective. These habits are not necessarily attained in school.

An older nursing graduate has more time to become a better, organized person; to know her strong points, faults, breaking points, things she cannot do, and learn how to deal with them knowing that a harder road lies ahead.



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 Technological developments continue to improve well into the 21st century, bringing in advancements in surgical care. By extension, the responsibilities of the registered nurse that assists in patient care in the operating room/theater need to keep up with the times. 



 Definition: 

 These nurses who have more specialized duties in the OT/OR are called perioperative nurses. The word “peri-” is Greek for “about”, or “around”, “enclosing.” Just think of the word “perimeter. Hence, “perioperative nursing” means the care of a patient before, during, and after a surgical procedure. 



 Duties: 

 Typically, perioperative nurses fall into two categories: 

  Scrub nurse  - These nurses select and pass surgical instruments to the surgeon during the operation. He/she might also assist in the procedure. 

  Circulating nurse  - This kind of nurse manages the operating room. She ensures the place is safe for the patient and operating staff. 

  Anaesthetic nurse  - Provides support to the anaesthetist during or before the procedure. Duties include preparing the equipment, and administering anaesthesia to the patient in a safe manner. 

  Holding bay nurse  - this term might be called differently in other countries. The holding bay nurse is responsible to bring the patient up to speed in the pre-perioperative environment. She is also responsible for all the information to be correct prior to procedure, such as fasting status, reports, and medication. 

  Post-surgery Recovery Nurse  - As the name indicates, this nurse cares for the patient immediately after surgery. Tasks such as ensuring patient’s airways are open, recording results, are the norm. 

  It is common for a single perioperative nurse to carry two or three of the aforementioned duties during a patient’s course of the surgery.  



 Education: 

 A post-basic certification is needed in order to qualify one to take up perioperative duties. The duration of the post-basic training might be within 1-2 years. Nurses undergoing training are exposed to surgical care, intensive care, and treatment of critically ill patients.  

 Most post-basic programs require 3-4 years of work experience as a registered nurse beforehand.  



 Workload and Working Conditions: 

 Surgical procedures can be very long. Moreover, complications can sometimes occur, further delaying the endpoint of the surgery. 

 Perioperative nurses are expected to be alert of the patients’ vitals during the post-surgical state to monitor any signs of abnormalities. 

 Working hours may differ across institutions. A small clinic specializing in aesthetic surgery might have more regular hours, compared to a teaching hospital that has multiple wards. 

 Work conditions and intensity also depend on the severity and complexity of the patient’s surgery. 



 Opportunities in Perioperative Nursing 

 Like most areas of nursing, job opportunities continue to grow. This specialization is expected to grow at a high rate as more institutions begin to provide surgical procedures. 

 The additional training provided to nurses with perioperative backgrounds can open many career doors. In the future, they will be able to function as OT directors, handle fiscal matters, and other managerial aspects of the operating theater. 

 With some more experience, nurses can proceed to becoming academicians or educators, as well as go into research. 

  Read more on advancing your nursing career into nursing education HERE.  

 Salary and income  
Nurses with specialization (such as perioperative nursing) stand to earn higher than the national average of nurses’ income. However, it is subject to location and healthcare institution facilities. 

 For those in the public sector, you have a high chance of being put in a higher grade. 

  Read more on how nurses can increase their income HERE.  



 Source: 

  https://healthtimes.com.au/hub/perioperative/46/guidance/nc1/perioperative-nursing/563/  

  http://www.mayo.edu/mayo-clinic-school-of-health-sciences/careers/perioperative-nursing  

 Search for high-paying perioperative nursing jobs here at  MIMS Career . Sign up and apply today with our safe, secure, and free site. MIMS Career is an extensive job portal for healthcare practitioners such as nurses, doctors, and dentists throught Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia and the Philippines. 

 Browse through our vast directory of job vacancies by top healthcare employers. See any jobs you like? Apply with one click, or save it for later if you need some time to think about it.  

 Can’t find what you’re looking for? Set up an email alert, and we’ll notify you when a job vacancy that meets your desired criteria becomes available.

Career Highlight: Perioperative Nursing

Technological developments continue to improve well into the 21st century, bringing in advancements in surgical care. By extension, the responsibilities of the registered nurse that assists in patient care in the operating room/theater need...

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 A few weeks back Malaysians were shocked to hear of a man  impersonating a medical officer at a hospital  in Alor Setar. What was impressive was that the man kept the act up for about a year before authorities caught him! 

 There have been many cases of people impersonating doctors or surgeons for all kinds of reasons. These are some of the most interesting throughout recent history. 

 1. Kristina Ross 

   

  Fake profession : Plastic Surgeon 

 Kristina Ross frequented bars and pubs, claiming to be a plastic surgeon. She’d approach unsuspecting women, sweet-talk them and get them to know about her “private practice.” Under the guise of a plastic surgeon, she would conduct “breast examinations” on these women, and have them contact her number. 

 Her years of fake activities was brought to a halt when two recipients of her “free breast examinations” contacted the number Ross gave. The number belonged to a real plastic surgery clinic, but had no surgeon that went by the name of Kristina Ross. Their suspicions of the phony surgeon grew, so they called the police. 

 The authorities launched an investigated, and arrested Ross sometime later. But that’s not the last part of the story; upon arrest, it was discovered that she was actually a transgender man who changed his sex. 

 Bottomline: don’t subjugate yourselves to medical exams in non-clinical settings. 

 2. Francisco Rendon 

   

  Fake profession : Dentist 

 Rendon was able to practice his own twisted brand of dentistry for about 16 months before the police finally caught on. 

 His dental clinic was situated between two automobile workshops. His patients grew wary of his dental credentials as they had to sit in a leather office seat instead of a reclining chair. 

 Hygiene was not maintained well; Rendon made his patients spit into a trash can rather than a proper sink. He used unlicensed tools, including a tool which purpose was to polish cars on his patients. 

 When the authorities came to his “office” to arrest him for practicing without a license, he still had many patients in the waiting room. 

 3. Keith Allen Barton 

   

  Fake profession : Doctor 

 This lying physician claimed that he could cure serious diseases like HIV and cancer. He claimed he could “stop the diseases before they spread” and “nip it off from the bud.” He spread lies about the pharmaceutical industry, propagating the myth that corporations were hiding the real cure to those diseases. 

 In reality, what he did was charge his patients exorbitant fees for his homemade cures. Most of his remedies were made of cheap ingredients and did nothing to improve patients’ conditions. Sometimes he even made it worse. 

 He shares the same name as a registered doctor in California, and used this fact to swerve past the authorities. He was finally arrested under charges of identity theft and grand theft. 

 4. William Hamman 

   

  Fake profession : Cardiologist and Medical Speaker 

 Everybody liked him; he flew commercial planes for a living, and was also a cardiologist with 15 years of experience at the side. He frequently published papers in academic journals. He went around delivering lectures at universities and Cardiology seminars. 

 One day he submitted an early draft to a university committee that oversaw publication for their medical journal. One staff member spotted a glaring flaw in the otherwise impeccable paper; he had no M.D. (medical doctor) qualification. 

 What makes Hamman so interesting is that his academic achievements as a fake cardiologist were particularly impressive. His focus was on team-based efforts and how to get cardiology teams to work better together to improve outcomes. It had real academic weight to it. 

 5. William Bailey 

   

  Fake profession : Doctor 

 Bailey was an eccentric man. Being born in the late 1800s, when radioactivity was still a poorly understood science, he was obsessed in marketing the health benefits of consuming radioactive substances for the masses. 

 In 1918, he released Radithor; a tonic that he claimed could cure diseases and restore health by stimulating the endocrine glands. Of course, there was no scientific basis to this. Radithor was made by adding radium crystals into water. It gave off an emission of 1 microcurie per mole of Ra. 

 Despite not being proven to be effective, the public lapped up Bailey’s bogus claims of the healing properties of Radithor. Eben Byers, a young Pennsylvanian competitive golf player, was urged to take the irradiated substance after a consultation with his doctor. He was suffering from pains in his side; so he bought and drank Radithor on a daily basis. 

 Byers died in 1932. He had holes in his skull due to radiation poisoning; his jaw even fell off as it degenerated. He had to be buried in a lead coffin to contain the radioactivity from his body. 

 Bailey died after the Second World War, after having suffered from multiple cancers and poisoning. 

 
 Source: 

 
	  http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1330725/Kristina-Ross-pretended-plastic-surgeon-conduct-bar-room-breast-exams.html  
	  http://www.nbcchicago.com/news/local/francisco-rendon-fake-dentistry-charges-91216374.html  
	  http://www.nbcsandiego.com/news/local/Phony-Doctor-Keith-Barton-Claimed-He-Could-Cure-HIV-Cancer-DA-186240712.html  
	  http://abcnews.go.com/Health/MindMoodNews/fake-cardiologist-william-hamman-duped-real-doctors/story?id=12395288  
	  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radithor

Top 5 Fake Medical Practitioners

A few weeks back Malaysians were shocked to hear of a man impersonating a medical officer at a hospital in Alor Setar. What was impressive was that the man kept the act up for about a year before authorities caught him! There have been...

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