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Know Jack #270 Shifting Skills, Fleeting Knowledge

Several years ago, I took a nursing assignment at a children’s hospital that was part of a university complex. I went there with some hesitation. I had two concerns that troubled me. First, was my experience. I was an experienced nurse, but not working strictly with children. The second you might be able to guess—the parents.

Kids, I could deal with, worried parents had not always been a pleasant experience for me. Turns out my concerns were unfounded. I was looked up to as an expert and often requested by parents. You could have knocked me over with a feather. I did the assignment and an extension before moving on.

My next stop was a rural Emergency Room. It didn’t take long for my skills and intelligence to plummet. Suddenly, I didn’t know what the hell I was doing, especially with kids. It left me wondering what happened to me in the move of 150 miles.

Perception is what happened. If I was such a good nurse, the reasoning went, what was I doing at Podunk Hospital? Never mind, I had to perform more skills with less back-up in the rural setting. In the public mind, it was impossible that a capable nurse worked in such settings.

I get the same thing now that I’m retired.

I mention this as a word of caution when you turn on the television to listen to the “experts” reading the teleprompters or listening to doctors and healthcare folks with an agenda and a financial stake in fear and patent medicines. “Science” is for sale folks. And those public health institutes rely on politicians for their budget.

I have friends and family who are in law enforcement who tell me the value of having people repeat their story. If it doesn’t make sense, or the story keeps changing—it’s a lie. There is no innocent fantasy.

Just think for yourselves. You’ll figure it out sooner or later.


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