An NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde critical care worker has written a poem to recognise the hard work and dedication of colleagues as part of International Nurses Day 2021.
Senior Charge Nurse, Ruth Wilson, tells the tale of a nurse’s role through ‘Helping Hands’ which outlines the huge remit and responsibility of nurses in providing day-to-day care in the health sector.
Ruth, 55 from Ayrshire who has worked as a nurse for more than 36 years, sees first-hand how colleagues look after patients on a day-to-day basis, with the spotlight on them now, more than ever before.
Ruth said: “I like to write poetry in my spare time and it seemed fitting that for this year’s International Nurses Day that I wrote something which resonated with colleagues and reflected their hard work, not just during the pandemic, but year-round year after year.
“Delivering person centred care lies at the heart of everything we do at NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde and being a nurse I think embodies this principle. I hope people enjoy the poem and take something positive away from it.”
At the start of the day, hands are washed before countless nursing tasks
Protecting ourselves with hand hygiene and professionally fitted masks
These hands will wash patients, write careplans, and administer medication
They will clean surfaces and equipment with total dedication
These hands will give out meals, make beds, and answer numerous telephone calls
They will guide and support mobilising patients in order to prevent falls
These hands will pour cups of tea, tie up linen, and empty patient bedpans
They will secure pumps and equipment to gleaming drip stands
These hands will feed and clothe, perform oral hygiene and comb hair
They will fill out fluid balance charts and give regular catheter care
These hands will take notes on ward rounds, and order things on “Trak”
They will dispense analgesia, offer a massage or give a soothing ice pack
These hands will organise flowers, open cards and tidy the place
They will dress wounds, cut nails, moisturise patient’s bodies and their face
These hands will soothe fevered brows through the comfort of touch
They will wipe away tears when it all gets too much
These hands will perform CPR and airway skills and really without much thought
Will automatically pilot to the resuscitation skills they were taught
They will support relatives with bad news, and patients will be allowed to cry
They will perform last offices when their patients die
They will sign discharge letters when people are getting home
They will clean all the surfaces shinier than chrome
These hands are priceless hands, helping hands, the hands you hope are there
If you ever get sick yourself, you want hands that care.