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Journal of Nursing

UN Noticed 

UN noticed by Berkley Carter Nurse Manager Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center Winston-Salem, N.C. [email protected]


I would like to take a moment to sing praises to the hero’s that I have had the privilege to work with on a daily basis. These people are the bedside personnel, which make a difference in someone’s life each day.  Many think that this is a physician or nurse, but, although I am among them and would say yes to our being the unsung hero, there are others that go mostly unnoticed. The people I am referring to are called the support staff. Now most would disagree with me about this, but, I would like to remind you of how a nurse’s day or night goes without any of them on our shift. Now are you getting the picture?


Much of my bedside knowledge, although, taught in Nursing 101, did not come from a book, clinical instructors, simulation labs, etc.  Instead a nursing assistant or nursing aid, title is determined by what part of the country you live in was my unsung hero. Here was a woman with knowledge of how to care for client’s I had just read about and taken care of briefly in the clinical area. How she knew all these things, I sometimes asked myself. But, as I watched her over the years I realized that she also observed and learned with exceptional speed, and although she could not give the meds or change a dressing, she knew the most important part of treatment and that was how to care for a patient. 


Always intriguing is the skill of the nursing assistant. I often feel we do not stop to say how much we appreciate them. They are the ones at the bedside that truly adapt their time so that they provide for patient needs. Often times, this is done without them ever knowing that this is occurring.   


We as healthcare providers should remember that it takes more than the knowledge of degrees can provide. It also takes the UN noticed hero, our nursing assistant.

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