I have very much enjoyed reading this thread. I live in Canon City, Co. I have worked here in town and over at the state hospital in Pueblo. I graduated from the ADN program at Pueblo Community College in 2002 and will be receiving my BS from UCHSC in December. I have been very disappointed in the work environment since becoming a nurse. Frankly, I have found most to be appauling, especially the state hospital. Although, I am now working in a SNF (Centura) connected to our one hospital down here and it is not any better. We have 14 prisons in this county and they are always hiring for nurses, the pay is ok (27.00/hr) but I have not heard anything great about them either. Anyway, I have been accepted into an online MS program at New Mexico State University for psych/NP and even though I could complete the program from right here, I am thinking about moving there. I just don't know how things could be any worse than they are here. I grew up in Colorado Springs back in the 70s and this state is not what it used to be. I agree with what has been said about the greed of these healthcare facilities. Centura is owned by Catholic Health Initiatives and we are supposed to be extending the healing ministry of Christ. All I see is watching the bottom line going on. I mean does anyone here think it is appropriate for a nurse on a sub-acute floor (and believe me that is what our SNF is) to have 45 patients?? Thats what I face every night on my overnight 12 1/2 hour shifts. Yes,I work 12 1/2 because I am supposed to get a 1/2 hour break ( a half hour out of 12 1/2 how generous) I have worked at this job since March and I have NEVER had time to take a break! I told this to my boss and she told me I need to get more organized, compassionate, huh? I won't even go into the drama going on at the state hospital in Pueblo, except to say, since when did nurses become the primary physical intervention force in psych nursing. In the movies there are big male orderlies on the wards to do the take downs, not in real life, it is the nurses job. I just want to close by saying I am just here trying to stay optimistic about my future and still looking for the perfect psych nurse job , thanks again.