Dean McIlear

BSc (Hons) Nursing Studies 2018
Staff nurse working in intensive care in Kings College Hospital in London

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Tell us in more detail what your role entails, what challenges you currently face, and how you are finding ways to cope.
I get to work in two ITU’s mostly one dedicated to the treatment of covid-19 cases and the general unit kept for traumas, cardiac arrests, sepsis and such. Times are tough at the moment and our work loads are increasing every day. Where normally the ratio between critically ill patients and staff nurses stood at 1:1. The ratio is beginning to change as more cases of critically ill patients present to the hospital with Covid-19. My colleagues are what is driving me to carry on, the camaraderie that exists is remarkable. Watching the service pull together and nurses stepping up with no ITU experience to help us handle these critically ill patients has been amazing. The public rooting for the NHS has been amazing too, we don’t want to let everyone down.

Do you have a top tip for coping at a time of crisis? Or a few words of advice or support for fellow students and alumni on the front line?
My advice to those students and my fellow alumni is remembering you attended, or attend, the university for the common good - you embodied this while at GCU. Continue to drive forward and know sunny days are coming. Hopefully literal sunny days. 

Take comfort with your colleagues and know you are all facing an adverse situation, but in many years to come you will look back and know that no matter what we pulled together, we tried our hardest and put in everything we had. You guys are amazing and always were, and now the country can see it too.