• 12 October 2021
  • 8 min read

Healthcare Support Worker: Who You Can Expect To See On Your First Day

  • Laura Menzies
    Healthcare Support Worker
    • Mat Martin
    • Ben Gordon
    • Richard Gill
  • 0
  • 85
Play video: "Remember that even if it is really busy on your first day and you feel overwhelmed and there's loads of people running back and forth, just embrace the situation."

Laura explains many of the staff roles & uniforms you’ll encounter on the ward, and how they can support you on your first day as a Healthcare Support Worker.

Topics covered in this article

Introduction

Understanding The Different Uniforms

Ward Staff

Visiting Staff

Doctors

Admin Staff

Pharmacy Staff

Porters, Catering & Domestic Staff

Other People Who May Visit The Ward

Gradually Over Time, You'll Learn Who's Who

Introduction

Hi everyone, my name's Laura.

Today I'm gonna be talking to you about the type of people you can expect to see on your first day as a Healthcare Support Worker, working on a ward within the NHS.

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Understanding The Different Uniforms

Firstly, I know how daunting it can be working on a ward on your first day.

I remember the first day I started, there were so many different members of staff, people in different coloured uniforms.

I felt so overwhelmed and it takes time to learn who's who.

Firstly, I just wanna point out, if you look online, you can bring up the NHS uniforms.

It'll tell you what colour uniform represents what member of staff.

That is a good little list to look through and just familiarise yourself with the different types of staff, going by what uniform they wear.

The type of people you can expect to see on a ward on your first day, let's go through them.

Ward Staff

So like yourself, there's gonna be a Healthcare Support Workers.

Depending on the size of the ward, there could be two to three, maybe a few more if the ward's bigger, but normally on average is about three or four Healthcare Support Workers.

You'll have qualified Nurses.

These are normally in the light blue scrubs and normally there's about six or seven on the ward.

And then we have the ward manager.

Normally where I work, a lot of the shifts, the ward manager work are day shifts, nine to five.

You don't tend to see them on the weekends as much as mainly on the weekdays.

If it's your first day, a week day, you're likely to bump into the ward manager.

Visiting Staff

Then there's a lot of staff who come onto the ward to do certain procedures or offer services to the patients.

If we run through some of them, especially on weekdays, you're gonna get all these members of staff on the ward.

So we've got people like Physiotherapists, Occupational Therapists.

These are the type of people who will come in, assess the patients, see how much stuff they can do for themselves, see what they might need to extra help with.

And also if the patients are due to go home soon, these types of staff will come in and put things in place for them to have a care plan in place if needed when they go home.

Also you might have phlebotomies.

In the local hospital where I work, they'll go round the wards in the morning and take all the bloods for the patients who need their bloods taken.

Doctors

We have the doctors who come on the ward for ward round.

This is normally done mid morning and it can seem quite daunting when you see the doctors come on for the ward round because there tend to be quite a few.

You might have consultants, you might have surgeons coming onto the ward.

You could have junior doctors, students coming on and they're helping the doctors with the ward rounds.

So that is a very busy time.

Admin Staff

Also you will have people coming onto the ward, perhaps admin staff, people who are after medical records for patients.

There is a lot of admin stuff on the wards as well.

On our ward, we tend to have a ward clark and a receptionist.

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They tend to juggle the admin duties themselves.

So they're normally based at the nurses station or in a separate office that we have.

It's likely you'll get to meet them on your first day.

Pharmacy Staff

We also tend to have a pharmacist, they'll come up to the ward, do what medication rounds, look at different things that the patients might need for their medication, discuss things with the Nurse in charge.

So they tend to come around once a day.

Porters, Catering & Domestic Staff

We'll also have porters back and forth to the wards.

So they're not based on the ward, but they'll come back and forth if they've got to take patients places, if they've got to transport things like linen, so they tend to come and also catering staff.

The catering staff and domestic staff, they come to the ward.

The catering staff on our ward, we've got a kitchen situated just off the ward.

So they're based on our ward for the whole day then.

You get to know them over time because they're regular staff to your ward, which is nice because you build up a bit of a relationship, a working relationship then with them.

Other People Who May Visit The Ward

Some other people who might come to the ward would be relatives of the patients, family, friends.

So at the moment, obviously that's limited in our hospital due to COVID reasons, but normally that can be quite busy at visiting times.

We're dealing in with all the different people coming to visit.

And then some other people who might visit.

You might get just normal people from other wards might pop onto your ward if they need to borrow stock, if they need to ask things.

It's just getting an awareness for who could come on to your ward and who you're likely to meet and just get to know people really.

Gradually Over Time, You'll Learn Who's Who

It is a good thing if you can learn the uniforms and see things like in our hospital, all the Healthcare Support Workers wear green.

So if you're ever stuck, if you look up for someone in green, they can help you if you're new, when you need some advice on what to be doing, etc.

And then the qualified Nurses, I mean, you're there to work alongside the nurses and they're extremely helpful and welcoming, and they'll guide you on what to do, especially if you're new to the health care role, they will really help you settle in and explain what you should be doing.

So that's mainly a lot of the people who you're likely to see on your first day. I'm trying to think.

I don't think there's any others from the top of my head that I can think of, but if you've got any other questions, please link them below or write them below and I'll try my best to answer them.

But yeah, have look at the uniform online, go through that.

That's really good before starting.

And just remember that even if it is really busy on your first day and you feel overwhelmed and there's loads of people running back and forth, just embrace the situation.

Try not to be nervous, everyone's there doing a job.

And if you don't know who someone is, then just ask them or ask the person you're working with.

And gradually over time, you'll learn who's who.

But yeah, so if you start a new job soon, good luck.

I hope you enjoy every minute of it.

And I'm sure in no time, you'll know exactly who's who.

Okay, take care, have a nice day, bye.

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Do you have any questions for Laura?

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About the author

  • Laura Menzies
    Healthcare Support Worker

I’m Laura and I work as a Healthcare Support Worker within the NHS, I’m starting the part time BSc (Hons) Nursing (flexible learning) course through the University of South Wales this September. I am looking forward to developing my skills and knowledge further and becoming a qualified nurse. Working and studying part time is important to me as it enables me to balance my family life with my children. In my free time I enjoy spending time with family and exploring new places.

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  • Laura Menzies
    Healthcare Support Worker

About the author

  • Laura Menzies
    Healthcare Support Worker

I’m Laura and I work as a Healthcare Support Worker within the NHS, I’m starting the part time BSc (Hons) Nursing (flexible learning) course through the University of South Wales this September. I am looking forward to developing my skills and knowledge further and becoming a qualified nurse. Working and studying part time is important to me as it enables me to balance my family life with my children. In my free time I enjoy spending time with family and exploring new places.

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