Nursing in Switzerland and in Moria Refugee Camp

I am often asked how I handle the transition from nursing in Lesbos’ Moria refugee camp to returning to practice in Switzerland. Don’t I feel contempt for my Swiss patients’ petty pains? Don’t I disdain their suffering, having seen so much “truer” suffering stemming from “worthier causes”? …

An experience of two wards as a nurse

Over the years, I have worked on a number of different wards and in different settings. Some are loud and busy, some quiet and slow. Some have good resources and are well-staffed. Others are crying out for almost everything — including running water and electricity.

Within one hospital, the nature…

The varying and contrasting needs of patients on wards

Most people work at a desk. I don’t. I work at a bed. Or, rather, I work at beds. On any given work day, I have between 2 and 15 beds as my workspace. Some of my time (actually, a depressingly large and increasing portion of my time) is spent…

How getting to know patients as people can improve care

Two of my patients today on the ward are a husband and wife pair sharing a room. Let’s call them Mr and Mrs H. When I walked in first thing yesterday morning, I couldn’t even immediately tell which was which from the doorway. They were both in their 90s, wrinkled…

Death as the central flame

As a nurse I have a fair mount of experience with death — one might say a familiarity even — after over a decade in hospitals. Sometimes I hold people’s hands as they take their last breaths (and I mean this quite literally, trite as it sounds); sometimes I am…

Erika C-B

Nurse errant, mama, food blogger. I write as a means of processing, both work and personal experiences.

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