I just recently started my journey into Nursing, inspired by my mother who graduated as an RN in 2009. She always tells me stories and experiences; and some of them were about how bitter some nurses become after years of doing it.
I started my clinical a few weeks ago, and I am already seeing signs of this deterioration of care in CNAs who have been in practice for only a few years. To be honest, it shocks and truly upsets me to see such corner-cutting in this Assisted-Living Facility. They have residents sit in front of the nursing station doing nothing while the CNAs just chit-chat, some sit in front of a blank TV because no one will take the 10 seconds to put in a new video, there is still BM from a previous resident half-washed away in the tub rooms, they still have BM trails on their bottom when I do peri-care, still dirty briefs in trash cans - if there are even bags in the trash cans - and gait belts? Please! They just grab the residents by the arm and lift them up that way.
All procedural ignorance aside, I was giving a shower to a resident with a CNA from the facility. While she was complaining about the lack of care that the residents get - this one in particular, being that she is mildly "uncooperative" and most just don't want to deal with it - she talked about the resident as if she wasn't even there. As in while brushing her hair saying things like "See how thin her hair is? It's just so sad." And "Look at how dirty (the resident) is. She probably hasn't been bathed in at least a week." The resident was able to talk and able to hear, and even if she weren't I would never talk about someone in that condition in that manner while they are in the room.
I just want to know that not all nurses become like that. Perhaps some people just enter the Nursing field for the paycheck and are not very caring people by personality. My mom says that true nurses can't be trained, it's just something you have in you. I feel like I'm just like my mom in that I have it in me, even my instructor says I am really coming out of my shell and display the care of a great CNA. I know that not everyone can be Virginia Daniels, and I know that the perfection displayed in textbooks and videos is far from reality; but this just does not seem right.
-Jennifer, CNA student