210 days – that’s how long it currently takes until a position can be filled with a geriatric nurse. According to projections by the Federal Statistical Office, the need for nursing staff is expected to increase by a third by 2049 compared to 2019, to 2.15 million. But geriatric care has an image problem: lousy working conditions, poor pay, and a workload that is detrimental. Rashid Hamid, Hamburg geriatric nurse and founder of the outpatient care service Smile, doesn’t want to hide the shortcomings in his industry – but he’s annoyed that no one talks about the good things about the job. So he starts.

Mr. Hamid, in your book “A Heart and Care” you report that the nursing profession has made a different person out of you. To what extent?I used to be a typical teenager. Lazy, on my Game Boy all day, eating fast food. I was a shy, withdrawn guy. During my training, the older people motivated me to be more open. They always asked directly who I was and what I did. Through her, I learned that it’s not that difficult to start a conversation. Thanks to my work in nursing, I get along better with people these days. Through my patients I realize how good we have it these days. From Grandma Lotti I learned what it used to be like growing up without a refrigerator and without electricity, which was always available.

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