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Issue of Falls at a Nursing Home: Professional Reflection Essay

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Updated: Jul 21st, 2021

Introduction

An opportunity to reflect on personal work experience through convenient assessment mechanisms is a valuable practice that contributes to increasing individual professional qualifications. As a methodology for analysis, Gibb’s reflective cycle will be utilized, the tool that helps analyze a specific stage of activities from an individual perspective. The problem of patients’ falls in nursing homes is an urgent nursing issue, and my experience in one of these institutions in New Zealand is the object of evaluation.

Issue Description

Falls caused by older patients’ physiological weakness is an issue that is addressed in many healthcare institutions. According to Carrier et al., of the cases examined, 13% of incidents in New Zealand nursing homes are associated with falls, and half of them result in severe injuries (555). As Vance et al. state, addressing this problem is one of the most frequent interventions developed by students practicing in these institutions (E116). As a result, by promoting relevant methods of prevention, the percentage of falls is minimized, which influences the overall patient outcome positively. Jamieson et al. associate this problem with the use of potent drugs that affect coordination and complicate older adults’ movements (73). My work in such conditions was also aimed at reducing the level of falls, and the assessment of this practice may allow me to reflect on my professional practice.

Gibb’s Reflective Cycle

Gibb’s reflective cycle is applied to evaluate my work by the aforementioned specifics. Guise and Wiig note that this mechanism “is used to structure the debriefing process and guide the reflection” (500). As Reljić et al. argue, this methodology includes such steps as a problem description, feelings, evaluation, analysis, conclusions, and action plans (62). Based on this principle, I can discuss my working experience in one of the New Zealand nursing homes.

As a key aspect of activities, I was involved in the practice of minimizing falls among the target audience. Working with patients has left positive feelings since the overwhelming majority of patients were ready to follow all the instructions responsibly and took my recommendations as valuable advice. Based on the results of the activities, I have managed to convey to older adults the importance of self-prevention and following the principles of safety when moving, although not all the patients expressed interest in education. While analyzing my practice, I realize that I should develop more engaging strategies to involve the target audience in communication. In a conclusion, I assume that I could have offered diverse strategies to propose older adults as steps to prevent falls. Okamoto et al. remark that, in some clinics, reflective models are not common, which, in turn, is an omission (519). This practice and, in particular, Gibb’s reflective model is a valuable aspect of self-analysis. As an action plan, I could suggest creating special training courses for patients in nursing homes to increase their knowledge about the importance of observing safety measures and preventing falls.

As a result, utilizing Gibb’s model as a basic reflection methodology is a convenient mechanism. According to Cherkis and Rosciano, gaining experience is impossible without evaluating the results from a personal perspective (4). In addition, as Arumugam et al. argue, knowledge is forgotten quickly if appropriate analytical methods are not applied (48). Therefore, such an assessment mechanism addresses all potential gaps and makes it possible to avoid possible errors in the future.

Conclusion

The issue of falls among older patients in nursing homes is an acute one, and based on Gibb’s reflective model, my results in this area have been analyzed following my personal experience in one of the relevant New Zealand institutions. This assessment methodology is a convenient tool for obtaining valuable information about the quality of the work performed. The considered practice can allow me to avoid possible mistakes in the future and interact with the target audience effectively.

References

Arumugam, Balaji, et al. “Reflective Writing – How a Medical Student Can Reflect?” Journal of Education Technology in Health Sciences, vol. 4, no. 2, 2017, pp. 47-53.

Carryer, Jenny, et al. “Prevalence of Key Care Indicators of Pressure Injuries, Incontinence, Malnutrition, and Falls Among Older Adults Living in Nursing Homes in New Zealand.” Research in Nursing & Health, vol. 40, no. 6, 2017, pp. 555-563.

Cherkis, F., and A. Rosciano. “Reflective Practice: Implementation Across Curriculums.” International Journal of Nursing Research Health Care, vol. 1, no. 7, 2018, pp. 1-7.

Guise, Veslemøy, and Siri Wiig. “Preparing for Organizational Change in Home Health Care with Simulation-Based Training.” Clinical Simulation in Nursing, vol. 12, no. 11, 2016, pp. 496-503.

Jamieson, Hamish A., et al. “Drug Burden and Its Association with Falls Among Older Adults in New Zealand: A National Population Cross-Sectional Study.” Drugs & Aging, vol. 35, no. 1, 2018, pp. 73-81.

Okamoto, Reiko, et al. “Realities of Reflective Practice Skill Among Public Health Nurses in Japan and Related Learning and Lifestyle Factors.” Open Journal of Nursing, vol. 7. no. 5, 2017, pp. 513-523.

Reljić, Nataša Mlinar, et al. “Self-Reflection During First Clinical Practice: The Experiences of Nursing Students.” Nurse Education Today, vol. 72, 2019, pp. 61-66.

Vance, Esther, et al. “Health Professional Student Education Related to the Prevention of Falls in Older People: A Survey of Universities in Australia and New Zealand.” Australasian Journal on Ageing, vol. 37, no. 3, 2018, pp. E116-E119.

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IvyPanda. "Issue of Falls at a Nursing Home: Professional Reflection." July 21, 2021. https://ivypanda.com/essays/issue-of-falls-at-a-nursing-home-professional-reflection/.

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IvyPanda. 2021. "Issue of Falls at a Nursing Home: Professional Reflection." July 21, 2021. https://ivypanda.com/essays/issue-of-falls-at-a-nursing-home-professional-reflection/.

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IvyPanda. (2021) 'Issue of Falls at a Nursing Home: Professional Reflection'. 21 July.

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