Strapped for cash
Four students describe how they put their skills to use to earn money
Greg Barnes finds that communication is a crucial part of the job
I worked as a healthcare assistant on the surgical wards at the Norfolk and Norwich Hospital and Colchester General Hospital during three summer breaks before I started my clinical course. The common perception of a healthcare assistant as ‘bed maker’ and ‘bottom wiper’ is false. Such activities form only part of your work. After a training period of about three days you are equipped to work in most areas of the hospital. There are a number of job skills you may be familiar with, depending on your stage of training. These include basic clinical skills such as taking pulses, temperatures and blood pressures.
Typically, morning shifts start at 7 am. On arrival at the ward you receive “handover” from the night staff. During handover each healthcare assistant on the ward is allocated a group of patients to care