Join TSR now and get answers to all your questions about uniSign up now

Ward Volunteer Experience Watch

    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    Hello all, I'm planning to apply for GEM next year for 2019 entry. I'll be going into my 4th year in September and will then have a 'gap year'. As I want to try to get experience in this year I've pretty much resigned to dedicating the next year to studying and getting voluntary experience.

    I've been browsing for voluntary roles at hospitals in my university city and have actually found one at my university hospital as a 'ward volunteer'. Now the minute I came across this role I pretty much jumped as it seemed like a great way to get some ward experience. My role (one the same ward for the whole placement) would basically consist of getting to know the patients, running errands, helping them eat (this would be more hands of after training) and typical other things. Basically trying to help make the whole experience pleasant.

    I know that the point of experience is what you gain from it, not how much you do, so this seems like a pretty good role because it lasts for six months (meaning I'll be done by Easter) but yet still will give me A LOT of new experiences. I also plan to do some healthcare related work during my 'gap year' so this would be helpful for my CV.

    The only issue is that browsing TSR I've come across a few posts saying that these ward volunteer roles are useless because you aren't doing anything 'clinical'... Do any current students/applicants have anything to add to this or can shed some light on it? Would it be a good idea or not because to me is seems like a great way to spend six months
    Offline

    3
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by gradmed305)
    Hello all, I'm planning to apply for GEM next year for 2019 entry. I'll be going into my 4th year in September and will then have a 'gap year'. As I want to try to get experience in this year I've pretty much resigned to dedicating the next year to studying and getting voluntary experience.

    I've been browsing for voluntary roles at hospitals in my university city and have actually found one at my university hospital as a 'ward volunteer'. Now the minute I came across this role I pretty much jumped as it seemed like a great way to get some ward experience. My role (one the same ward for the whole placement) would basically consist of getting to know the patients, running errands, helping them eat (this would be more hands of after training) and typical other things. Basically trying to help make the whole experience pleasant.

    I know that the point of experience is what you gain from it, not how much you do, so this seems like a pretty good role because it lasts for six months (meaning I'll be done by Easter) but yet still will give me A LOT of new experiences. I also plan to do some healthcare related work during my 'gap year' so this would be helpful for my CV.

    The only issue is that browsing TSR I've come across a few posts saying that these ward volunteer roles are useless because you aren't doing anything 'clinical'... Do any current students/applicants have anything to add to this or can shed some light on it? Would it be a good idea or not because to me is seems like a great way to spend six months
    I did the same thing for a year when I turned 17. It was a fantastic experience because it really gave you a sense of not just the kind of patients are and their attitudes etc but you also see the doctors and nurses doing their work.

    I would 100% recommend it.
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by SGHD26716)
    I did the same thing for a year when I turned 17. It was a fantastic experience because it really gave you a sense of not just the kind of patients are and their attitudes etc but you also see the doctors and nurses doing their work.

    I would 100% recommend it.
    Hey, thanks for the advice! I've also found another role that isn't exactly like this one but is essentially supporting people with dementia. Obviously exposure to what the doctors and nurses are doing will be the same but the patients are more 'niche' I guess. Do you think this will make much difference?
    Offline

    3
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by gradmed305)
    Hey, thanks for the advice! I've also found another role that isn't exactly like this one but is essentially supporting people with dementia. Obviously exposure to what the doctors and nurses are doing will be the same but the patients are more 'niche' I guess. Do you think this will make much difference?
    I think the more exposure to patients the better. From my volunteering I could talk about mentality of patients and how they feel about their condition and what this has taught me about being a doctor. This especially links well to when they ask you stuff like what's the hardest part of being a doctor. Then you can say stuff like patients are suffering and close to death etc. You can also say stuff like being a doctor is not just a glamour job and there's the real hardship of treating patients, some who are actually aggressive toward you and some who just want to die.

    For me, it was a real eye opener, especially as my contact with patients was one on one without the presence of doctors and nurses by my side.
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by SGHD26716)
    I think the more exposure to patients the better. From my volunteering I could talk about mentality of patients and how they feel about their condition and what this has taught me about being a doctor. This especially links well to when they ask you stuff like what's the hardest part of being a doctor. Then you can say stuff like patients are suffering and close to death etc. You can also say stuff like being a doctor is not just a glamour job and there's the real hardship of treating patients, some who are actually aggressive toward you and some who just want to die.

    For me, it was a real eye opener, especially as my contact with patients was one on one without the presence of doctors and nurses by my side.
    Thank you so much!!!
    Offline

    3
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by gradmed305)
    Thank you so much!!!
    No problem and the very best of luck with your application.
    Offline

    3
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by gradmed305)
    Hey, thanks for the advice! I've also found another role that isn't exactly like this one but is essentially supporting people with dementia. Obviously exposure to what the doctors and nurses are doing will be the same but the patients are more 'niche' I guess. Do you think this will make much difference?
    Dementia as "niche". Lol.

    It'd be valuable experience no doubt. As a volunteer you'd probably be able to befriend some of the ward staff too and get to see and learn a little more.

    I just personally couldn't dedicate 6 months of my limited life to such a role :p:

    Edit: oh just once per week that's fine then.
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by nexttime)
    Dementia as "niche". Lol.

    It'd be valuable experience no doubt. As a volunteer you'd probably be able to befriend some of the ward staff too and get to see and learn a little more.

    I just personally couldn't dedicate 6 months of my limited life to such a role :p:
    Yeah I didn't know how to phrase it :')

    And yeah, another bonus!

    Meh, it's only one day a week and next year I'll have a lot of free time (only about 6 contact hours pw). I'd hopefully be done before the Easter holidays so then I can focus on my exams and research project. Who knows what will happen though xD
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by SGHD26716)
    No problem and the very best of luck with your application.
    Actually, another question if you don't mind. Is it appropriate to write that you intend to apply for medicine so think this will be useful piece of experience, in any volunteering applications? Or is it best avoided?
    Offline

    3
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by gradmed305)
    Actually, another question if you don't mind. Is it appropriate to write that you intend to apply for medicine so think this will be useful piece of experience, in any volunteering applications? Or is it best avoided?
    I mentioned it in my application and in my interview. I think it shows a real interest in the role due to it being with patients etc. At the end of the day, you are working for free so I don't think they should mind. I literally said at my interview that I want to be a doctor and this will provide my with some vital experience while also making a positive contribution toward my community.

    I don't mind at all. Feel free to ask any question anytime.
    Offline

    3
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by gradmed305)
    Hello all, I'm planning to apply for GEM next year for 2019 entry. I'll be going into my 4th year in September and will then have a 'gap year'. As I want to try to get experience in this year I've pretty much resigned to dedicating the next year to studying and getting voluntary experience.

    I've been browsing for voluntary roles at hospitals in my university city and have actually found one at my university hospital as a 'ward volunteer'. Now the minute I came across this role I pretty much jumped as it seemed like a great way to get some ward experience. My role (one the same ward for the whole placement) would basically consist of getting to know the patients, running errands, helping them eat (this would be more hands of after training) and typical other things. Basically trying to help make the whole experience pleasant.

    I know that the point of experience is what you gain from it, not how much you do, so this seems like a pretty good role because it lasts for six months (meaning I'll be done by Easter) but yet still will give me A LOT of new experiences. I also plan to do some healthcare related work during my 'gap year' so this would be helpful for my CV.

    The only issue is that browsing TSR I've come across a few posts saying that these ward volunteer roles are useless because you aren't doing anything 'clinical'... Do any current students/applicants have anything to add to this or can shed some light on it? Would it be a good idea or not because to me is seems like a great way to spend six months
    This sounds like great experience! I'm super pleased for you, it's definitely a unique perspective of both hands on patient care (feeding them) and seeing the work of the doctors and nurses. Good on you mate
    Offline

    3
    I volunteered in a nursing home a while back and i liked it.

    I was like a befriender, chatting to the residents and making sure their social needs were met. I was also feeding some of them and reporting stuff back to the nurse and healthcare assistant if something was wrong.

    The whole experience was valuable to me which i cannot express in writing.

    I would definitely like to go back because i know i provided the residents with a breath of fresh air.

    So may take would be to just do it. You have got nothing to lose and any experience is a good thing anyway as you may get a good reference at the end.
    Offline

    3
    ReputationRep:
    Hey guys,

    I've also been volunteering but to be honest at times I do not want to go because I've been having too much perverted attention recently and it has made me incredibly uncomfortable.

    What should I do?
    Offline

    3
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by geniequeen48)
    Hey guys,

    I've also been volunteering but to be honest at times I do not want to go because I've been having too much perverted attention recently and it has made me incredibly uncomfortable.

    What should I do?
    As from patients?

    Tell your manager.
    Offline

    3
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by SGHD26716)
    As from patients?

    Tell your manager.
    Yeah from patients.
    Thank you I will. Should I change ward to female only or older patients only?
    Offline

    3
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by geniequeen48)
    Yeah from patients.
    Thank you I will. Should I change ward to female only or older patients only?
    That's a good suggestion. There would be quite a few wards with only females.

    Quite disgusting that's actually happening in a hospital
 
 
 
Poll
How are you feeling about Results Day?

The Student Room, Get Revising and Marked by Teachers are trading names of The Student Room Group Ltd.

Register Number: 04666380 (England and Wales), VAT No. 806 8067 22 Registered Office: International House, Queens Road, Brighton, BN1 3XE

Quick reply
Reputation gems: You get these gems as you gain rep from other members for making good contributions and giving helpful advice.