Day four out of six in a row, doing our group work in the big group of seventy five


Decided not to go to WiFi place after class today; so I did not upload my last blog and here I am adding  a new one. 

Start with a 31-second YouTube clip. Not so scintillating I suppose but it shows you a typical moment. Every meeting the group of seventy five people in my class spend group time.

 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZyPEEA23iHg&feature=youtube_gdata_player

  We are systematically working our way through a pile of ECG strips, also known as my “ECG Atlas”. In the afternoons we move to simulated emergency situations, but we start of each day doing this. It develops confidence.

 Now, I don’t ever simply tell them the name of the rhythm. Not ever. They apply a process of analysis and critical thinking to each one. In real life in critical care, success is often about using a thinking process to make a really good guess as to what’s going on, and how to construct the story without having a detailed case study to go by. With the minimum of info fed to them, bit by bit, the way it would happen in real life.

 So, we are having fun, and “getting there.”

 A dear colleague emailed to say ” I wish I was there with you” and (to paraphrase a line from the movie “Forrest Gump”) I emailed back :

 “you are”.

 And it’s true. For this course I do feel that I am bringing the best pieces of everything I have learned, from all the influences in my life, and putting them on the table. Certainly all I learned since 2007. Definitely stuff I learned from the late Bob Kaschub, master of doing something with nothing. The ultimate in “Old School.” Bob has died (sadly) but many are still kicking around, and on this very email list. To all those persons: thank you for your support in this, it means a lot. You have helped me bring my A game here.

Any way – random vignettes of today:

 Doing a simulated pre-arrest  scenario and the team decided to only speak in Nepali. Surreal of course…. I was the voice of the patient and I found a few terse Nepali phrases… Fun. 

 Students made out their name tag in Nepali, I was able to show my ability to read (and generally  botch) Devanagari. Which was fun. I wore my topi of course – the little Nepali cap made of woven cotton.

 Students “getting it” in terms of reading rhythms. Always rewarding, like hearing somebody finally play something nice on the flute after lots of lessons….. .

 DBT today included terkari made of artichoke hearts and mushrooms. Normally I don’t eat local mushrooms in Nepal (long story there). It was the best terkari I have ever had. Yum.

 Phone call from the administrator at hospital in Bhairawa: they are *in* – and will produce a class of 30 people for my three-day trip there. We don’t know the dates yet… Stay tuned.

Nailed down the dates for Bharatpur: July 10th, 11th and 12th.  Hooray. Travel there the 9th on the tourist bus with Aarju, the person who is from there and in the Wednesday class. Bharatpur is dead serious about upgrading their training. -It’s an honor to go.  

The Nepal visitors  who *wannabe*  cool go to the Himalaya; the ones who *are* cool go to the Terai…. and that is where Bharatpur is located. I am told I will have a classful of students there.

 And yes, I expect it will be hot. And yes yes, I will take my malaria prophylaxis.  

 Any way, right now I am watching a light romantic comedy starring Will Smith and Gene Hackman in a chase scene – don’t recall the name of it….it has to do with creepy government surveillance…

Gotta go, tomorrow is day five out of six…….

 Joe

About Joe Niemczura, RN, MS

Experienced nursing educator and problem-solver. I have fifteen years of USA nursing faculty background. Add it with fifteen more devoted to adult critical care. In Nepal, I started teaching critical care skills in 2011. I figure out what they need to know in a Nepali practice setting. Then I teach it in a culturally appropriate way so that the boots-on-the-ground people will use it. I travel outside of Kathmandu Valley as well. When the recent violence happened, I knew the cities - I had trained people in those locations. One theme of my work has been collective culture and how it manifests itself in anger. Because this was a problem I incorporated elements of "situational awareness" training from the beginning, in 2011. Global Health Nursing is not all sweetness and light; not solely milk & honey and happy moms and babies.
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2 Responses to Day four out of six in a row, doing our group work in the big group of seventy five

  1. M A says:

    Joe-I smiled at the nurses walking while reciting facts out loud. That is a
    learning strategy with tactile learning and some students do well learning
    that way or while jogging and listening to a recording. I took an
    interesting class called Brain Gym a few years ago and we learned relaxation
    strategies to release stress in a test situation for example. The students
    love to do these things especially when I am doing them right along with
    them. They improve reading scores in the elementary level.
    What is a topi? You wore it to class. I like that the students
    have grasped your concepts and then can teach others in Nepali. Great
    strategies. M A

    • Thank you. I had not even considered the degree to which this may have been an individualized strategy on the part of some educator here. Begs the chicken-or-egg question. Did western specialists get the idea from here, or did they somehow bring it here?

      Walking and reciting seems to me to be quintessentially Asian – there is a zen serenity about it – it requires mental discipline….

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