Here is a letter I sent email.
I just finished reading your article in the Friday October 4, 2002 Tampa & State section of the St. Petersburg Times. As a Registered Nurse working in the Tampa Bay area in health care for over a decade, I am compelled to comment on the findings in your article.
should struggle to find nurses! What do they have to offer a nurse? A part time position probably less than 40 hours a week and certainly less than a full twelve months every year. This too, at an hourly rate significantly lower than the market rate in an area of the country notorious for low compensation; claiming sunshine as part of the benefits package.
The age of the washing machine nurse is rapidly coming to an end, I hope! In years past the income from a nurse in the family was used to augment the husband's earnings. Her addition allowed the family to buy a new appliance, furniture or any other additional "luxury" that the husband's income would not normally allow to be purchased as soon.
Economics have caused a condition requiring most women, married or not, to earn significant income simply to maintain a basic standard of living. Every adult must work (outside the home for wages) in order for the family to survive.
Traditionally nurses are hired, scheduled and paid with the husband expected to provide the primary income to support the household. Employers of nurses knew that the paltry compensation offered to nurses would be accepted because they had not been the primary breadwinners in the family. The funds earned by nurses were only to augment the gross family income not compensation for the vital position they filled in the delivery of health care.
Employers of Nurses and Nursing Schools are clamoring a nursing shortage exists. This is not fact! It is pure fiction! There are plenty of nurses currently licensed to practice in the United States and in Florida. Nurses are not choosing to accept the paltry compensation and abusive working conditions for the service they provide.
Although Nursing education consistently provides sufficient numbers of Nurses needed to fill the open positions; significant numbers of Nurses stop practicing within a few years of becoming licensed. They discover that the compensation is not worth the sacrifices and efforts needed to do the work.
Until compensation and working conditions for nurses improve there will be the shortage of Nurses" claimed by the employers.
( the rest of the letter follows in a subsequent posting here due to the 3000 character word limit)
Oct 4, '02
GREAT post Norbert!
Corrected my spelling
Last edit by NRSKarenRN on Oct 4, '02