Student Focus - Staying informed

INMO student and new graduate officer Dean Flanagan updates readers on news and issues concerning younger members of the INMO

Hello to all the new students who at this stage have had a few weeks in their new chosen profession. It will be a hard but very fruitful journey full of extraordinary experiences. I have already met with some students in DkIT, NUIG and LYIT and hope that those fresh faces will become more and more involved in the INMO and thanks to all who have come forward as local reps for their class.

Settling into college
I can remember every new college year from first to fourth and how nervous I was. It took me a good month in first year to feel relaxed in lectures and in my new lifestyle. It is so important to enjoy this experience, but to be mindful of what to expect and how to deal with, and prepare for it.

Enjoy your discounts
When your student registration is complete, enjoy some fantastic discounts with the INMO Groupscheme at Get discounts on Converse, fuel and getaways as well as fantastic walk-in discounts on presentation of your INMO card in various establishments. Visit the website to see all the offers available.

Hitting the books
I know how difficult it can be to study and I also know how easy it is to fall behind and feel completely lost. Take advantage of the study support available in the college and universities and also on offer from the INMO. The library here is an immense resource and the staff very friendly. Visit to chat with a librarian and even get assistance with those pesky literature searches.

Graduate scheme
Minister for Health Leo Varadkar has said he is open to making changes to the graduate nurse scheme to stem rising emigration. He stated that money wasn’t the only issue and that he hoped to come up with creative ways to make the scheme more attractive to young nurses.

Two years ago, former Health Minister James Reilly introduced the graduate intern scheme under which 1,000 additional graduate nursing posts were to be made available on two-year contracts at between 85-90% of the full staff nurse rate. Due to pressure and opposition from the INMO, the take-up of the scheme has been very low, and I thank all the young activists for their solidarity and fight against this scheme.

Patients First
The INMO is involved with various other organisations and patient groups, in a new campaign entitled ‘Patients First’. It is vital that all students and new graduates become involved and attend public meetings with local politicians to let them hear your story.

Patients First has had several meetings already and the stories from staff, patients, carers and student nurses were fantastic, heartfelt and, at times, saddening. You can read extracts from the meetings and follow daily updates on Twitter: @patientsfirstIE, Facebook: and on the website  Please attend your local meeting were possible and bring your family and friends and show the government the Irish people, and their healthcare professionals, are putting up a fight to protect care.

UHG lunchtime protest
I was recently involved in the lunchtime protest in Galway (see photo above). At the protest I got a chance to meet some students who took time out of their lunch break or college studies to stand and support their full-time colleagues in the hospital and I thank them for doing so. I hope all students and new graduates will come out to support these protests as this is needed. These protests aim to highlight the need for more staff, more resources and more beds. In essence, we need to keep our youngest members of the profession here in Ireland.

Panto time
The annual ‘Cheerios Christmas Pantomime’ is fast approaching and, while I know it might be early, INMO members can avail of an offer to purchase tickets at just €16. The tickets are now on sale. The performance that INMO members can purchase these discounted tickets for is on Wednesday, December 10. Book early to avoid disappointment and visit for more information.

Student Focus - Staying informed

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