Reflective Essay on Blood Pressure

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Observation:

Improving patient care has become a priority for all healthcare providers with the overall objective of achieving a high degree of patient satisfaction. A number of contributing factors to improving patient care include greater awareness among the public, increasing demand for better care, keener competition, and more healthcare regulations. One of the greatest methods of enhancing patient care is self-reflection. Reflective practice is a requirement for career progression in healthcare. However, if done properly, it can greatly enhance the skills of a healthcare provider. The process of becoming a reflective practitioner takes time, effort, and practice. Hence, it is critical to start early in education in order to strengthen the reflective skills required as a medical radiation technologist. As the first step into self-reflection practice, I will be writing about my experience that evoked a response in myself during one of the labs in the patient care course. In the vital signs lab, when assessing the blood pressure of my partner, I ran into a problem. I could not take his blood pressure properly due to the defective blood pressure meter. Specifically, the inflation blub was not working well, therefore I could not inflate the cuff and take my partner’s blood pressure.

Reflection:

The experience that I encountered during the vital sign lab aroused emotions in me. Even though it was not my first time taking blood pressure, at first, I doubted myself. I thought that I was doing something wrong and as a result, I got really frustrated and nervous. My partner was really cooperative, but I could tell that he was getting impatient as time passed. After a couple of minutes of trying to take the blood pressure, I finally gave up and addressed my issue to my lab instructor. He looked into it and he told me that the inflation bulb on this blood pressure meter was not working properly and I should use another meter. This was a slight relief for me, however, I still had all those feelings and thoughts in my mind about not being able to take my blood pressure. This resulted in me not being able to take my blood pressure even with the fully functional meter. I asked my lab instructor to help me again and I felt really embarrassed because every other student was done with taking blood pressure and they were doing some new activity. I kept questioning myself why a procedure that normally takes a couple of minutes to do is taking me a long time. I felt really bad as I was holding my partner and me behind, so I let my partner try and he took my blood pressure with no problem. After that, as a result of all those emotions I did not try anymore, and I moved on to the next activity. The experience I had with defective tools in the lab brought back some memories. I remember a few years ago, I went to my doctor to freeze a small wart I had on my feet with liquid nitrogen. During the preparation of the procedure, my doctor realized that the liquid nitrogen can was empty and there was no new replacement for it. They have told me that it would take a week for the new one to arrive and I should come back in a week. In order to get to my appointment that day I had to miss my classes. I was annoyed and angry that I had to miss two days of my classes for a medical procedure that usually takes 20 minutes to do. Now I realize that I have been in the position of both the patient and the healthcare provider during a medical tool malfunction.

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Interpretation:

Having fully functional equipment and tools is the essence of providing good patient care. A defect in medical equipment, even minor, could result in multiple problems in a healthcare setting and not delivering the best patient care to the patients. For example, in my case, a problem with a blood pressure meter may not seem like a big problem but in a clinical setting, these minor defects usually lead to bigger problems. Imagine, as a healthcare provider, you struggle with taking the patient’s blood pressure because of an equipment malfunction, this may make the patient uncomfortable questioning the skillsets of their healthcare provider. Another scenario is that if your blood pressure meter is not functioning properly and you want to move the patient to another room with a functional meter and your patient has difficulty walking, you put the patient in a really unpleasant situation and even cause them harm. So, something as little as a defect with the inflation pump of a blood pressure meter could elongate the assessment time and waiting time could ultimately result in an unlikable and uncomfortable experience for our patient. Also, it could even affect us, healthcare providers, in a way that we are no longer able to provide the best care to our patients.

Decision:

As it was mentioned before, having the right and functional equipment in the healthcare setting is important to both patients and healthcare providers. Therefore, medical equipment must be checked periodically in order to maximize efficiency in a healthcare setting. Doing quality control and checking each piece of equipment is not the only solution to this problem. Machinery malfunction could happen at any point and time, even during patient assessment. Back-up plans are something that every healthcare provider should have in such a situation. These plans could be having replacement equipment and asking for help. A combination of the above-mentioned solutions could be used to provide better care and a more pleasant experience for patients. As a result, I have decided that in my clinical placement, I will regularly check the quality and functionality of my equipment and prepare backup plans in case something goes wrong during the assessment. To measure the efficiency of my work, I will keep a record of the duration of each assessment and note if a medical defect was observed during the assessment. I will therefore have an average time estimate of how long each assessment would take (with or without a medical defect). In case of a defect, I can confidently explain to my patient that I am an experienced and trusted individual who can solve this problem in a timely manner. This will build trust in my patient and keep the stress away, ultimately delivering better patient care.

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Reflective Essay on Blood Pressure. (2023, December 13). Edubirdie. Retrieved April 18, 2024, from https://edubirdie.com/examples/reflective-essay-on-blood-pressure/
“Reflective Essay on Blood Pressure.” Edubirdie, 13 Dec. 2023, edubirdie.com/examples/reflective-essay-on-blood-pressure/
Reflective Essay on Blood Pressure. [online]. Available at: <https://edubirdie.com/examples/reflective-essay-on-blood-pressure/> [Accessed 18 Apr. 2024].
Reflective Essay on Blood Pressure [Internet]. Edubirdie. 2023 Dec 13 [cited 2024 Apr 18]. Available from: https://edubirdie.com/examples/reflective-essay-on-blood-pressure/
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