Earlier this year six vets with a passion for emergency and critical care embarked on Vets Now’s pioneering Cutting Edge programme. One of those, Emma Passmore, has been writing a diary about her experiences on the 10-week induction.
In her latest entry, Emma tells how she got on in her four-week placement in Vets Now's out-of-hours clinics in Nottingham, Lincoln, Alfreton and Sheffield.
The reason you haven't heard from me for a while is our group have been out in the clinics doing mentored shifts for the past four weeks.
I'm delighted to say everyone has reported back for the second tranche of lectures and practical learning — still full of enthusiasm for what lies ahead.
Read more: Claire says Cutting Edge has provided invaluable route into ECC
Everyone had knowledge to share about the cases they'd seen, but it wasn't all just work and no play. All of us also took the opportunity to see a bit more of the country.
Esther travelled to the Lake District in-between shifts, and the photos were great. Agnieska and her family visited London, and I enjoyed exploring the countryside around our clinics in Nottingham, Lincoln, Alfreton and Sheffield.
It was in Nottingham that I enjoyed my first taste of an out-of-hours shift in emergency and critical care — and it was non-stop until midnight, which was an excellent introduction.
My mentor was very supportive, and I learned so much from every case that presented. In most situations, I expanded on my medical knowledge. But I also learned about client care, how the computer system works and about the high clinical standards at Vets Now in general.
There was always something to be gained. As the weeks progressed, my confidence began to grow. But I always felt safe and at ease, thanks to my mentor's presence.
By the end of the placements, my decision making had improved, and I'd picked up lots of ideas about how to improve my efficiency during a busy shift. As vets, we're all very aware that we must continue seeking opportunities to learn throughout our careers and then adjust our care accordingly based on the knowledge we've gained.
This is the case whether our learning is the result of new cases we've worked on or new science that's come to light. In this mentored environment, it felt very safe to continue this learning process, and I now feel more motivated than ever about where I'm going in my career.
Read more: Aoife tells how Cutting Edge programme provides perfect launchpad for career
I'm genuinely excited about working in ECC and caring for our clients and their animals. I'm also looking forward to working with my team in Alfreton, where I'll be based, and helping the clinic do the best it possibly can.
I'm sure my Cutting Edge colleagues would agree with me — we are all excited about the next step in our lives.
The next intakes for Cutting Edge are in August and January and places are filling up fast. Anyone interested in applying should call the Vets Now recruitment team now on 01383 841181 or click here.