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    Background

    “I had a lot of fear in the beginning” – Stirling Uni student Nicola Phillips on life as a student nurse during the pandemic

    Written by on March 25, 2021

    Nicola Phillips from Dunblane is just one of many student nurses thrown onto the front-line during the coronavirus pandemic.

    The 43-year-old worked in the acute assessment unit at Forth Valley Royal at the start of the crisis during her 3rd year at Stirling University.

    She tells us how she’s balanced placements, studying, exams and being a mum throughout the past year.

    She said:

    “It’s not been easy, it’s something none of us knew was going to happen or come along.

    “It was quite difficult because everybody was learning at the same time about this, nobody knew what it was.

    “We were having to do our nursing stuff, our studies, our exams all at the same time.

    “To do all that as well as focusing on everything that goes on with your family is hard.

    “It completely changed everything and it was a complete roller coaster of emotions.”

    “It was a complete roller coaster of emotions.”

    The mum-of-one has also been working in the community with district nurses to provide care for patients in there homes.

    Nicola says this work is just as hard as being in a hospital with covid patients because the virus is harder to spot.

    She said:

    “You’ve no zones, you don’t know where covid is – you’ve got to be really with it when it comes to your PPE.

    “Unfortunately, you see a lot more vulnerability when out in the community.

    “I think sometimes it’s unseen because it’s not in the hospital but I found it just as challenging – if not more challenging.

    “It was really good to have another perspective and I feel that I gained a lot from that.”

    Unfortunately, you see a lot more vulnerability when out in the community.”

    Nicola uses blogging as a way to cope with the stress and pressures of being a nurse.

    Her website has been running since she began her course.

    Nicola’s blog – https://nicolaphillipslifeasastudentnurse.wordpress.com/blog-2/

    She tells us she uses writing as a way to escape and it’s something she will continue to do even after she leaves university.

    Nicola will graduate this year and has already landed herself a job at Edinburgh Royal Hospital.