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Friday, 24 May 2013

The BNF, the CQC and the RCN

Nursing is full of acronyms and today I thought, as I have a moment I would tell you about 1 that's like a bible and 2 that are in the news a lot. The RCN is the Royal College of Nursing and I would say is the main trade union for nurses - why do we need a trade union? Mainly for legal support and insurance actually. We live in a culture where people try to sue for a profit and sadly healthcare is not exempt. By joining the RCN we insure ourselves, get a few nice free things, keep up to date with any nursing news with their publication, get access to a great online library and also free legal advice and representation should we ever need it (although I hope I never do!!). The RCN is very well respected and often in the news telling politicians how it is. And they gave me a free tote bag and nursing dictionary - thanks for that!

Next is the CQC, I thought I would mention this one as I am on placement at the moment and the CQC visited. This is the Care Quality Comission, they visit all healthcare settings to make sure that everything is running ship shape and I am very happy to say that my placement passed with flying colours as working exactly as it should do, so that was good news. The Care Qaulity Comission have the power to shut down healthcare settings that are not performing satisfactorily, they also run enquiries where there have been problems which is why you might see them in the news. Everyone fears the CQC, but really it's about making things better.

The third is the BNF, the British National Formulary - a bible of all things pharmacological. I mention this because I've been studying some parts of it lately and downloaded a little free app for my iPhone (a must for all nursing students with a smart phone!). If you need to give out a drug you don't recognise? Check the BNF. Concerned about side effects? Check the BNF. Contraindications? Check the BNF. Is that the right dose? BNF.  The BNF is law as far as I'm concerned and so handy to have.

Here's a look at the free app - 

This is the main menu

But it's split quite helpfully into sections by health topics

And here's an example of the search

Well worth a look but you will need to sign up for an NHS Athens account beforehand. Happy Friday Readers!

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