Having one of your patients code for the first time or responding to a code within the hospital for the first time, can definitely cause some anxiety.
I, for one, was nervous about my first code, before it even happened! I was worrying about what I would do, would I be in anyones way, and would I remember what to do. Before I knew it, I had a code the very next night, an hour before change of shift.
My first word of advice, is to keep your ears open and go with the flow.
For my first code, I was in a room with about 10 different health care professionals. I felt like “What could this student have to offer in this situation”, until I realized, thinking too much was the problem. Once I stopped questioning myself, I opened my ears and just paid attention to what the physician needed for the intubation procedure. Granted, this code didn’t need immediate action from a nurse, I still was part of a code and in a very stressful situation. It was sort of like testing the waters for the time that I will be first to respond. I now feel comfortable, have more confidence, and won’t be questioning my skills. Of course, I may get a bit of nerves next time, but I will respond the best way I know how based off of my knowledge.
My second piece of advice is to be confident. Confidence goes a long way and can mess with your head. Once you start questioning yourself, you will start slipping. Remember, you went to school for this, you KNOW what to do. It’s a matter of calming down and channeling your critical thinking skills that we all know so well.
I have attached a video that is a great example of what a code blue scenario looks like. Watch this video and take it all in. Everyone works together as a TEAM, you’re not alone! Hundreds of tests, hundreds of hours of clinical practice, THOUSANDS of pages read in your textbook, you KNOW what to do, calm your nerves and get to work! Click the link below.