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The meaningful experiences of being an Registered Nurse (RN) Buddy
journal contributionposted on 2017-12-06, 00:00 authored by R Walker, M Cooke, Margaret McallisterMargaret Mcallister
This paper describes the previously unexplored Buddy RN experience. Critical interpretive theory underpinned this exploratory study set in a large metropolitan teaching hospital in South East Queensland. Participants were five RNs who had been Buddies to undergraduate nursing student(s) in the previous 12 months. They were interviewed using semi-structured techniques and their transcribed interviews summarised to identify relevant verbatim data for participant checking. Common themes were generated via critical interpretive analysis and points of tensionextrapolated. Four main points of tension were uncovered: Acknowledgement, Experience, Balance and Interruption. These revealed a number of paradoxes: the Buddy RN role is not professionally recognised by bodies that manage nursing; nursing is still influenced by essentialist discourses which perpetuate outdated practices and attitudes to the detriment of the Buddy RN; RNs are compelled to follow direction without question or dissent even though they are mandated by nursing’s regulating body to be independent and accountable critical thinkers. A clear articulation of the Buddy RN role in the form of policy is required from nursing’s regulating bodies. From this,health service management and universities can initiate the process of creating a framework for preparing, supporting, assessing and educating the Buddy RN.