1. Academic Learning and Application

By the end of my preceptor-ship (April 7th, 2019), I intend to have developed superior knowledge of the most common complications of spine surgery so as to be able to play an active role in the minimization of complications during spine surgery, and hence promote better outcomes following surgery. In the words of Reis, Oliveira, Rotta, and Botelho (2015), “complications are the main concern of patients and physicians at the time of spine surgery indication, and when they occur, may have personal and economic consequences, affecting the quality of life and future independence of patients” (21). For this reason, the relevance of minimizing the incident of the said complications cannot be overstated.

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Towards this end, I first and foremost intend to consult the relevant academic literature in seeking to further improve my knowledge of the approaches key to the minimization of spine surgery complications. More specifically, I will be consulting peer-reviewed journal resources on, for instance, dural tear risk during spinal surgery and how the said risk can be minimized. Secondly, I will also ensure that I actively engage my preceptor on issues relating to spine surgery risk factors and the various risk mitigation strategies that have sufficient backing from evidence-based research.

2. Skill Development

By the end of my preceptor-ship (April 7th, 2019), I intend to have familiarized myself with all the methods and approaches associated with proficient bedside handoff so as to promote patient safety and ensure continuity of care. According to Maxson, Derby, Wrobleski and Foss (2012), patient handoff between nurses continues to be one of the most important clinical nursing practice processes. Ineffective bedside handoff practices and processes could put the safety of patients at risk. This is more so the case in instances where the said undertaking fails to highlight key aspects of care such as the prescribed medications, plan of care, and physical assessment findings.

Towards this end, I will properly utilize the feedback I receive from my preceptor especially when it comes to the most appropriate change-of-shift practices and proper implementation of bedside shift reports. Secondly, I intend to ensure that I further improve my patient-involvement proficiencies during bedside handoff. This is particularly important given that as Maxson, Derby, Wrobleski and Foss (2012) observe, roping in patients at the time of bedside handoff “encourages patients to be involved actively in their care… and allows an opportunity for patients to correct misconceptions” (141).

3. Personal Development

By the end of my preceptor-ship (April 7th, 2019), I intend to be confident enough to take care of 3- 4 patients and utilize the competencies and capabilities gathered so far to further promote clinical outcomes.

One of the strategies that will help me achieve this goal is the further augmentation of my ability to promote patient understanding and education. According to Adams (2010), enhanced patient outcomes are anchored on not only the provision of superior care by the health care team, but also on the involvement of patients in their own treatment and therapy. For this reason, I will seek to actively engage in the promotion of patient health care literacy and self-care abilities. Already, “significant clinical benefits have been seen from trials of self-management or lifestyle interventions across conditions such as diabetes, coronary heart disease, heart failure and rheumatoid arthritis” (Adams, 2010, p. 62). Secondly, I intend to improve my collaborative skills and abilities so as to ensure that I am able to effectively interact and engage in consultative efforts with my peers and superiors in the delivery of care. This is particularly important given that “exceptional health care is facilitated by a collaborative approach including many different professionals and their clients” (Morley and Cashell, 2017, p. 207).






















Adams, R.J. (2010). Improving Health Outcomes with Better Patient Understanding and Education. Risk Management and Healthcare Policy, 3, 61-72.

Maxson, P.M., Derby, K.M., Wrobleski, D.M. & Foss, D.M. (2012). Bedside Nurse-To-Nurse Handoff Promotes Patient Safety. Medsurg Nursing, 21(3), 140-144.

Morley, L. & Cashell, A. (2017). Collaboration in Health Care. Journal of Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences, 48, 207-216.

Reis, R.C., Oliveira, M.F., Rotta, J.M. & Botelho, R.V. (2015). Risk of Complications in Spine Surgery: A Prospective Study. The Open Orthopaedics Journal, 9, 20-25.