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Nursing in Practice's 'Nurse of the Week'

Una Adderley is a senior lecturer for research method and evidence-based practice at the University of Teesside.

What inspired you to become a nurse?

I couldn't face university after so many years in school, so it was a sort of act of rebellion against what was expected of me (which is ironic as I now work in a university!)

How do you start your day every morning?

A very large cup of tea and a good book in bed (at least 10 minutes reading) before getting up to walk the dog and let my ducks out.

How do you relax and unwind after a day's work?

Yet another cup of tea and a good book, phone calls with my kids, another dog walk, glass of wine in the garden if it's sunny, some decent TV and chocolate if its winter - not forgetting zumba if it's a Tuesday.

What do you most enjoy about your job?

Being in the classroom with a load of nurses.  I don't mind if they're students in their first term or senior, post-graduate nurses.  I love sharing ideas and experiences and exploring new concepts.

What is the most challenging part of your day?

Trying not to be late.  I hate being early for anything (it feels a waste of time) but I always try to pack too much in and end up rushing everywhere.

Do you think the administration burden on nurses is excessive?

It always seems too much when you are having to complete it, but good data is important (but sometimes quantity does seems to exceed quality!)

Do you get enough face-to-face time with patients?

As a lecturer, I always want more.  But I do take the opportunity to go and shadow colleagues to make sure I keep in touch with practice and as a researcher, I get opportunities to work more directly with patients and other nurses.

Do you think nursing is a more or less respected profession than it was in the past?

It depends on how far back you go!  At least we are no longer regarded as witches (17th C) or prostitutes (18C-19C) And my grandmother who desperately wanted to train as a nurse in the early 20th century wasn't allowed to because it wasn't regarded as sufficiently respectable.  So, we have made some progress……However, I am intrigued by the current debate about nurses becoming too academic.  Since when was intelligence and compassion mutually exclusive?  I do wonder if the historic suspicion of intelligent females still lingers on…..?

Where do you see yourself in five years time?

Hopefully still teaching nurses and doing research.  Coming from a family who seem to drop dead unexpectedly early in a variety of bizarre ways, I tend to not take the future for granted.

Are you surprised by how much you get done in a day?

On a good day, yes but some days can be very frustrating.