Supporting the well-being of nursing students and student midwives during the COVID-19 pandemic
Intended for healthcare professionals
Evidence and practice    

Supporting the well-being of nursing students and student midwives during the COVID-19 pandemic

Monica Donovan Lecturer nursing, Nursing and Midwifery, Queen’s University Belfast, Belfast, Northern Ireland
Barry Gerard Quinn Senior lecturer, Queen’s University Belfast, Belfast, Northern Ireland
Clare Hughes Lecturer midwifery, Nursing and Midwifery, Queen’s University Belfast, Belfast, Northern Ireland
Deirdre O’Neill Lecturer nursing, Nursing and Midwifery, Queen’s University Belfast, Belfast, Northern Ireland

Why you should read this article:
  • To understand why some nursing and midwifery students felt isolated and abandoned when taking on frontline roles during COVID-19

  • To learn about the types of online support that can be offered to nursing and midwifery students

  • To appreciate the value of enabling nursing and midwifery students to explore personal and professional experiences in a safe non-judgemental environment

Throughout the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic the Queen’s University Belfast Connections (QUB Connections) project has provided online well-being support to nursing students and student midwives. The project, which was co-designed and led by students and academic staff, provided an online well-being service for students who took on front-line roles during the early part of the pandemic and for those who had to pause their studies. Insights gained from responses to an evaluation of the support sessions suggested that some students felt stigmatised, frightened, lost, isolated and abandoned during this period, but that QUB Connections gave them a sense of ‘being held’ and ‘attended to’ in a time of uncertainty.

The evaluation findings are a reminder of the need to continue to help nursing and midwifery students and newly qualified staff develop self-care and support mechanisms. QUB Connections is now embedded in the university’s school of nursing and midwifery pre-registration programmes to support students and those new to nursing and midwifery practice.

Nursing Management. doi: 10.7748/nm.2022.e2033

Peer review

This article has been subject to external double-blind peer review and checked for plagiarism using automated software

@monicad61622228

Correspondence

m.donovan@qub.ac.uk

Conflict of interest

None declared

Donovan M, Quinn BG, Hughes C et al (2022) Supporting the well-being of nursing students and student midwives during the COVID-19 pandemic. Nursing Management. doi: 10.7748/nm.2022.e2033

Acknowledgment

The authors would like to thank the nursing and midwifery students who co-created and helped shape Queen’s University Belfast Connections, and our practice partners, colleagues and academics for supporting this work in uncertain times

Published online: 15 March 2022

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