Advanced search

Midwifery students......did you/will you have to a general nursing placement ??

(25 Posts)
NuttyMuffins Mon 11-Jun-07 14:16:23

Just wondering, as it is the only thing that puts me off doing midwifery, and I know it is silly really, but if i had to do a placement on a male ward I just don't think I could.

My friend attends Wolverhampton Uni and she did have to do a placement on a general ward and did have to do mens bed baths etc.

NuttyMuffins Mon 11-Jun-07 15:56:12


Coathanger Mon 11-Jun-07 18:24:40

Hi NuttyMuffins

Yes, I will have to do a couple of general nursing placements as part of my degree course. One will be in A&E which I am quite looking forward to in a weird way, another will be on general gynae ward and another in community mental health, which I am not loking forward to all that much. I think I will also have to do another general medical placements as well.

It does concern me a little, as I want to be a midwife looking after generally healthy women, not a nurse treating ill people, but on the other hand it will be invaluable in learning about other professions (and Midwifery is now part of the interprofessional learning programme, where lots of health and social care students learn together some of the time).

I keep in mind that the general placements are for a week at a time, not the usual 5 weeks placements, and it all goes towards your learning and growing as a health care professional.

And for what its worth, I don't want to wash old men's tackle, but I can stand it to reach my dream

Good luck with whatever you decide, but remember the bigger picture xxxx

StripeyKnickersSpottySocks Tue 12-Jun-07 22:52:04


I spent 4 weeks on a general medical ward and 4 weeks on gynae. The gynae was interestign and relevent, the 4 weeks on medical were the longest 4 weeks of my life. But don't let it put you off. IF you REALLY want to be a midwife, then what's 4 weeks?

I got experience of mixing IV drugs and experience......well nothing else relevant really. Spent most of the time cleaning up incontinent, bed ridden eldely people. It was very depressing. But a distant memory now.

Oooh, also had a week in community mental health which I loved so much I considered asking to be transferred to mental health. Was a great week.

wrinklytum Tue 12-Jun-07 22:57:24

Oh its not THAT bad,honest:O

I am an adult nurse

Its only 4 weeks!!!

Would LOVE to do midwifery now though.Hated my midi stint when training but was not in the least bit babified.Am now though:O

NuttyMuffins Wed 13-Jun-07 08:14:55

Thanks, I know it sounds very silly, but i really don't think I could do a general nursing placement or mental health for that matter.

Gynae would be fine.

My friend hated her general placement and she is 1000 times more confident and bubbly than me and she still found it a struggle.

Coathanger Wed 13-Jun-07 17:13:56

I can understand your concern Nutty, but if midwifery is the one thing you want to do, all experience is useful, even if it is clearing up adult poo!!! But at the end of the day, they are worthy of our care and respect and it teaches us humility and compassion. It also makes us appreciate the aspect of good health that the majority of women in our care as midwives.

Honestly, Nutty, if you want to follow your heart and go into midwifery, the sacrifices and compromises are worth it. xxx

Oh and Stripyknickers....Have you now qualified or still training?xxx

Smurfgirl Wed 13-Jun-07 17:17:19

Midwifery students only have midwifery placements at my uni.

Busybean Fri 15-Jun-07 21:42:16

As far as I know we only have midwifery placements too.
Ive done lots of general nursing care so Im not that bothered if we have to do any general nursing, but I dont think we will as its hard enough for some people to get 40 births at the end of three years without doing general placements...

NuttyMuffins Sat 16-Jun-07 09:59:13

Thanks for the replies.

I had never even been interested in midwifery until my friend started her course, anxd the more she tells me the more interested I am.

She is at Wolverhampton Uni and did a 6 week general placement, but she did say that she thinks if I felt it was a major problem I could request a non male ward, but am not sure wether I could or not tbh.

UCE is the other uni that i'd apply to but I don't know anyone doing midwifery there so can't ask whether they haxd to do general too.

I know it is only one placement and 6 weeks isn't a long time in the great scheme of things but I just know I could not do it.

Coathanger Sat 16-Jun-07 18:06:13

The best thing to do would be to contact the 2 unis and ask them their policies on general nursing placements. You could ask about requesting female only wards, and ask the other one whether they do require students to complete a general placement. Nothing ventured nothing gained, as they say Good luck

tiredemma Sun 17-Jun-07 09:22:40

I have asked my friend at UCE apparently in accordance with EU directives on Midwifery registration all students have to have 'initiation into care in the field of medicine and surgery'- so in order to qualify, you have to have experience both theoretically and clinically of general nursing.

UCE tend to send their general nursing placements to Gynae.

Thats what she said, it would be best to speak to the university and ask what they do.

I know for nursing, in order to qualify we have to experience healthcare in a MAternity setting- so perhaps it is vice versa for midwifery.

NuttyMuffins Sun 17-Jun-07 09:29:52

Thanks for asking for me emma, you are a star

I do vaguely remember the mum of a student midwife telling me that her Dd was doing a gynae placement and to my knowledge she hsn't done any placements working with both sexes.

I think I will contact both unis aswell coathanger.

FlossALump Sun 17-Jun-07 09:47:49

I think the thing to remember Nutty is that the experience you gain doing this could be invaluable. You may gain experience in caridac arrests, septic patients and general medical conditions which the women you are caring for may well have (think along the lines of chronic illness, bowel conditions, lung problems etc). By gaining a deeper understanding of these you will be able to provide a better service to the women you will be caring for. I'm sure you can request placements, we were certainly able to when I did my nursing training. And if you don't get what you request you might find that you would be able to swap with another student. Please don't let this issue, which I think once you start will become less significant, put you off.

StripeyKnickersSpottySocks Mon 18-Jun-07 16:13:31

Coathanger - I'm halfway through my last year. How about you?

Nutty - I'm not been funny, but its very, very competitive to get onto midwifery training and you have to be very committed. If 6 weeks out your life is putting you off then I'd wonder how much you really want to be a midwife.....

Some people spend years and years applying, doing voluntary work, etc and still don't get in.

NuttyMuffins Mon 18-Jun-07 16:19:11

I'm not saying that I wouldn't do anything other than midwifery placements, but what part of giving a bloke a bed bath is anything to do with midifery ?? I'd have no problem doing anything else but would just not be happy with male patients.

Even as a HCA at the hospital my mum works at they can choose to do general hca work or just womens and childrens, so I don't think it is such an odd concept that I don't want to deal with male patients.

snugglebumnappies Mon 18-Jun-07 16:26:11

twas a while ago but I did 8 weeks gynae, nothing else, could have arranged to go for other placement in that time e.g. days awa from gynae in a&e etc but was particallarly unmotivated at the time have to say i found it hard, not because it was nursing but because I was treated like a kid by the nurses. It seemed they had little experience of "mature" students (and I was only 23!!) and felt the had to micro manage my time there e.g. ok now you can go to the library and work on your assignment for a few hours....err no, I am her to do a gynae placement not my assignment, which is at home on my computer

StripeyKnickersSpottySocks Mon 18-Jun-07 16:42:06

Sorry, didn't realise it was just the male patient part you had a problem with. But we weren't allowed to opt out of caring for men. I never actually did do a male bed bath, but cartainly had to help some men get changed and use a bedpan.

NuttyMuffins Mon 18-Jun-07 16:43:22

My friend had to do loads of bed baths etc with men, thats what started me off worrying about it. She hated her placement and she is so much more confident than me that if she hated it i know i'd fall apart.

StripeyKnickersSpottySocks Mon 18-Jun-07 17:14:12

Guess you could do the placement and then when you get there just say you're not bed bathing men. I'm sure they wouldn't make you.

The nurses were suprised I cleaned shit up and said I was the first midwifery student who got stuck in and did stuff, the others previously had all just watched.

StripeyKnickersSpottySocks Mon 18-Jun-07 17:14:41

They were meant to be getting stuck in and doing stuff by the way.

Coathanger Thu 21-Jun-07 08:28:05

Stripeyknickers - I am a mere first year but loving every minute

The thought of giving men bed baths turns my stomach somewhat, but I know it is a very small part of my training and I understand that, although we will be dealing with well, pregnant women in our chosen career, it is essential to gain a knowledge of other areas of health care. And, with the art of reflection, it may help me to develop my practice.

I think the key is to have an open mind

Smurfgirl Fri 22-Jun-07 15:33:39

Giving a man a bed bath is the same as giving a woman a bed bath tbh. Aside from the obv physical differences its all the same techinque etc and its not weird or anything.

mosschops30 Fri 22-Jun-07 15:38:19

Why do you feel so strongly about it nutty? I dont mean to be rude but it doesnt seem a very professional attitude.
I am doing nursing and there are some aspects I dont like (well lots actually ) but we are healthcare professionals and required to act accordingly.
Why do you think washing a man is any different to washing a woman? (because its not apart from anatomy)

tiredemma Fri 22-Jun-07 15:41:11

I must admit- initally the idea of bed -bathing a man was really the very last thing that I wanted to do on my nurse training- but now, its just another procedure, like taking BP etc. Im sure that most men dislike having to be bedbathed, its a procedure that can take away independence and dignity.

I sure in midwifery you will be faced with many not so pleasant tasks!!!

Have you contacted the unis yet to see what their General placements consist of?

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now »

Already registered? Log in with: