Could THIS Be the Cause of the Nursing Shortage? - page 2

"...you haven't even been a nurse long enough to even have an opinion." "...she has nothing to contribute to the nursing profession until she acquires some more experience." "The nurse was... Read More

  1. by   beckymcrn
    Here Here Familymanrnbsn!! I agree with you. Nobody ever told me before I went into nursing this job was going to easy or would make me rich and famous. I went into this career with my eyes wide open. My mother has been in nursing for 20 yrs.
    Although I do agree with some of the other posts about how we devour our young (these are the things the media loves to expand and blow out of proportion) our bottom line is our patients either in a hospital, a nursing home, or doctor's office we are responsible to them! So we must spend the little time we now have with them to the best of our ability. Show compassion to your patients and this will come back to you tenfold. They may not express verbally but they notice every kind remark or jesture.
    This is what we need to express to the media and new potenial students it is not about money it is about helping people when they need it most!
  2. by   Tiara
    I agree that it is all about compassion and doing for others. I believe that. However, you can have the best intentions in the world and make an error, omit something, lose your judgment for a minute, and it's a write-up and possibly your license on the line. Altruism will not help you with this situation. I know many nurses who are trying to do their best with compassion and good intentions, but the conditions can be unsafe and your license can be in danger.
  3. by   FamilymanRNBSN L/D
    I agree that times are hard and people are having to more with less and liability is rising as we speak, but I think it's like anything, if you are careful to plan out yourentrance into a particular area of nursing that you have researched out, not just the work but the place you want to work
    than you may have a much easier time of it. I am not afraid of hard work by any means but i have seen time after time nurses get locked into an area they hate, or they fail to asert their views in the proper forum that they may be heard. This being said it must be understood that some places suck to work for and will probably continue to be nursing disposal units. It is up to nurses to help themselves through careful planning not to end up at one of these locations...You do have a choice...Don't go into a place thinking you can solve years of poor mangement, and low staff moral with coffee and cheescake...However, if God calls you to a place he will grace you to deal with it. But be sure it is a calling, and not a lack of planning on your part...There is a huge difference. Many of my classmates were content to take whatever the hospital would offer them in the blindness of their nursing school years, not realizing what a nurses market we have right now. You can name your price, bonuses, unit you name it, its all a matter of how valuable you appear to the employer. Many of my friends sold their souls into nursing hell for a scholorship, when they could have had the scholorship and a better placement than they ended up with. Todd from tulsa...
  4. by   Q.
    I agree with all of you about the altruistic side of nursing. Hell, I think EVERY healthcare professional that chooses that route has some element of altruism. Big bucks or not, it takes some human compassion to do that job from day to day. I also agree with Tiara though. How "warm and fuzzy" can it be when you are working under conditions that don't allow you to do that? I've been happy lately when all my patients have been assessed and all my babies aren't blue. There's no interaction there. There's no connection. When I'm with a labor patient and we've bonded and I'm coaching her, etc, and that I'm told that I have to stay 4-8 hours more than my original 12 hour shift, a part of me grows to silently resent my patient, and I don't like that. When I finally get a relief nurse and I give report, and she nails me for forgetting to sign out some pain medications, I feel like crap. The little reward that I did feel from the small connection that I made with my patient was just lost.

    Altruism or not, it does not put wood on the fire. In fact, I would feel better volunteering my time with children or the elderly, and get my human connection that way. But, nursing is my job. I need it to survive at this point. I need an income, I need a paycheck.

    I see it as all one big vicious cycle. As Brownie stated above, nurses are people too, with feelings, resentments, baggage, and families. Just because we are in a caring field does not mean we shouldn't care about ourselves or each other. While we relish on the moments we spend with our patients - as I look in awe and wonder of a birth, as I see my patient smile because I just helped her breastfeed her newborn for the first time, as I see a new dad cry; these are all very rewarding to me. I couldn't ask for greater rewards. But these feelings only last so long. When it comes down to it, when the bills are due, when the public is growing distrustful of nurses, when I'm afraid I'm going to make a mistake because I'm working 16 hour shifts, when my own personal life suffers, then something has to change, and the altruism just doesn't cut it anymore.

    I don't think we need to sell the idea of nursing to people using the human interaction concept. Most people get that. But there is no reason why human compassion and altruism can't go hand in hand with a professionally rewarding and respectful career as well.
  5. by   FamilymanRNBSN L/D
    Suzy K I can relate completely. I too work L/D, but I know what you mean about nurses getting petty about the one thing you forgot, as apposed to what might have gone on before they arrived...I often tell the nurses I give report to: "If I forgot anything I don't care, so don't tell me later, have a nice day...Knowing me the way they do they also know I have made a point not to sit on my patient just so they would have something to do when I leave. I think you know what I mean. Those pts. that are 3 cm checked God knows how long ago, just got their epidural, and the nurse tells you they are fine, for you to only find them pushing when you walk in the room, coplete and +1, at 1915...I never get mad I just don't trust what any of them say, I always ck on the pt.
    before getting all comfortable with chit chat at the nurses station...And can anyone relate to the guilt us poor night nurses must feel seeing that we couldn't make the day nurse cut...Personally I like my night people, we seem to do more with less, and the day shift has no idea...I'll give them this though, you could not pay me enough to work full time around some of these docs during the hours when they are awake. I prefer them sleepy, as it helps my cause, when i begin the hypnotic suggestion, for pain meds, a labor epidural, or other needed interventions give me night shift....
    Todd From Tulsa....
  6. by   Q.
    Hi Todd-
    You echo my thoughts totally. I know nurses who sit on their patients all the time! Although it's nice that they labored down like that to +1 (less pushing for her, less for me too!) Off subject, seeing as you are MALE (oh no) I have to ask.
    I work with all chicks, so we talk about this openly..but..when we are pushing with a patient, we find ourselves pushing "with" her - like we end up with hemmorhoids. Do you do that??? I know it sounds silly....

    I hate the shift to shift bickering too. I used to work full time nights - loved the staff, hated the hours. I went to per diem and now I pick and choose. I still work nights sometimes, but also work days. A nurse who's older than me by far, but actually has less seniority than me, wants to get off nights in the worst way, but with our high turnover we have too many new nurses on nights and it would be not a good skill mix if we pulled her off. Well it seemed like I would work nights for her so she could rotate to days...and that was all good for her. Sometimes we'd work nights together - and that was a blast. But if I work walk in at 0630 and she's there from nights - WHAM comes the dirty look. On top of that, we're busier than hell and there's a C-section going on in the back.

    It just sucks sometimes, Todd. I hate this feeling.
  7. by   Brownms46
    Originally posted by Susy K:
    I agree with all of you about the altruistic side of nursing. Hell, I think EVERY healthcare professional that chooses that route has some element of altruism. Big bucks or not, it takes some human compassion to do that job from day to day. I also agree with Tiara though. How "warm and fuzzy" can it be when you are working under conditions that don't allow you to do that? I've been happy lately when all my patients have been assessed and all my babies aren't blue. There's no interaction there. There's no connection. When I'm with a labor patient and we've bonded and I'm coaching her, etc, and that I'm told that I have to stay 4-8 hours more than my original 12 hour shift, a part of me grows to silently resent my patient, and I don't like that. When I finally get a relief nurse and I give report, and she nails me for forgetting to sign out some pain medications, I feel like crap. The little reward that I did feel from the small connection that I made with my patient was just lost.

    Altruism or not, it does not put wood on the fire. In fact, I would feel better volunteering my time with children or the elderly, and get my human connection that way. But, nursing is my job. I need it to survive at this point. I need an income, I need a paycheck.

    I see it as all one big vicious cycle. As Brownie stated above, nurses are people too, with feelings, resentments, baggage, and families. Just because we are in a caring field does not mean we shouldn't care about ourselves or each other. While we relish on the moments we spend with our patients - as I look in awe and wonder of a birth, as I see my patient smile because I just helped her breastfeed her newborn for the first time, as I see a new dad cry; these are all very rewarding to me. I couldn't ask for greater rewards. But these feelings only last so long. When it comes down to it, when the bills are due, when the public is growing distrustful of nurses, when I'm afraid I'm going to make a mistake because I'm working 16 hour shifts, when my own personal life suffers, then something has to change, and the altruism just doesn't cut it anymore.

    I don't think we need to sell the idea of nursing to people using the human interaction concept. Most people get that. But there is no reason why human compassion and altruism can't go hand in hand with a professionally rewarding and respectful career as well.

    Susy K,

    This post made me smile..:-)! WOW...you definitely got my attention! For a minute, I had to look to see if that was you posting, or me...LOL! This is not only an excellent post, but the strength of your words seemed to belie much more of an experience level, than 3 yrs.


    Susy K,...If you EVER leave nursing...I will hunt you down, and drag you back! Don't let me be dead either, cause I will haunt you to no end!

    Well said,..I'm now the one in awe!

    Brownie


    [This message has been edited by Brownms46 (edited April 02, 2001).]
  8. by   FamilymanRNBSN L/D
    Originally posted by Susy K:
    Hi Todd-
    You echo my thoughts totally. I know nurses who sit on their patients all the time! Although it's nice that they labored down like that to +1 (less pushing for her, less for me too!) Off subject, seeing as you are MALE (oh no) I have to ask.
    I work with all chicks, so we talk about this openly..but..when we are pushing with a patient, we find ourselves pushing "with" her - like we end up with hemmorhoids. Do you do that??? I know it sounds silly....

    I hate the shift to shift bickering too. I used to work full time nights - loved the staff, hated the hours. I went to per diem and now I pick and choose. I still work nights sometimes, but also work days. A nurse who's older than me by far, but actually has less seniority than me, wants to get off nights in the worst way, but with our high turnover we have too many new nurses on nights and it would be not a good skill mix if we pulled her off. Well it seemed like I would work nights for her so she could rotate to days...and that was all good for her. Sometimes we'd work nights together - and that was a blast. But if I work walk in at 0630 and she's there from nights - WHAM comes the dirty look. On top of that, we're busier than hell and there's a C-section going on in the back.

    It just sucks sometimes, Todd. I hate this feeling.
  9. by   tony o callaghan
    Greetings from Liverpool, England,
    I have just signed up and read this discussion. We also have a nursing shortage in the U.K.
    I WILL BE sending all my collogues your web address. Almost every thing I saw applies especially the SELF DISTRUCT MODE of professionals continually fighting about status.

    Great site
    I wish you well and I will visit often
    Kind regards
    Tony
  10. by   Q.
    Originally posted by Brownms46:

    Susy K,

    This post made me smile..:-)! WOW...you definitely got my attention! For a minute, I had to look to see if that was you posting, or me...LOL! This is not only an excellent post, but the strength of your words seemed to belie much more of an experience level, than 3 yrs.


    Susy K,...If you EVER leave nursing...I will hunt you down, and drag you back! Don't let me be dead either, cause I will haunt you to no end!

    Well said,..I'm now the one in awe!

    Brownie


    [This message has been edited by Brownms46 (edited April 02, 2001).]
    Brownie, thanks for the compliment. Coming from you, I find that compliment to be worth a million.
    You remind me of a nurse I work with: She's been a nurse for over 20 years. Graduated with her RN the year I was born! (1973) she used to be an LPN and has a wealth of knowledge, about even the simplest things.
    I consider it a priviledge to work with her.
  11. by   gpip
    Are all these thing the reason for the nrsing shortage maybe, maybe not if you new your history you would know that things cycle every few years this is not the first nor will it be the last shortage remember that there have been shotages in the 1900', 1910's,1920's, 1940's, 1960's and 1980's and again now in the 21st century get a grip and stop speculating abou the shortage one of the big reason throughout history has been the poor salaries we are paid and the working conditions. Its sad that what we were fighting against 100 years ago is the same things we are fighting forr now. Although the profession is caddy and down right crappy in its treatment of each other you can't blame the shortage on that.
  12. by   Q.
    Gpip, I know my history. I have mentioned that the nursing profession has always had a pendulum swing.....a shortage occurs, the salaries go up, the units are at staff, then admin cuts back, drops salary, and then the shortage again. The thing is, the hospitals never learn from each shortage we've had because we never make a stand against what causes it!! I don't like taking an apathetic "oh well, that's how it's always been" attitude. There needs to be changes.

    In addition, THIS particular shortage is proported to be the worst. The babyboomer generation of nurses are close to retiring, and there aren't any new grads to fill those spots. The problem to me seems to start in nursing school. Enrollment is down, that is a known fact. Don't quote me, but I believe AJN has reported a steady decline down to 25% of school enrollment.

    My very own husband, who was a junior in nursing school, decided to leave the profession because of the pettiness, nastiness and politics of it all...not to mention little pay and all the other conditions that play a part. He enjoyed nursing - wanted to be a critical care nurse, loved cardiology, but the hen-clucking that our profession is known for turned him off. He realized as I've realized...the "warm and fuzzies" of nursing only lasts so long when you're working in a stressful environment. I attribute that environment partly to our nastiness to each other: the belittling, the competition, the HORRIBLE way we treat new grads and nursing students. This kind of thing we can actually control...so why don't we?

    I see it as a stack of dominos. We get our act together, define ourselves, agree to it, unite, speak in one, unified professional coherent voice, and demand changes. I see the rest will follow suit. But until then, as we continue to voice our concerns separately, focusing on LPNs vs RNs vs NPs vs BSNs vs new grads, NOTHING will get done.
  13. by   Brownms46
    Originally posted by Susy K:
    Brownie, thanks for the compliment. Coming from you, I find that compliment to be worth a million.
    You remind me of a nurse I work with: She's been a nurse for over 20 years. Graduated with her RN the year I was born! (1973) she used to be an LPN and has a wealth of knowledge, about even the simplest things.
    I consider it a priviledge to work with her.
    Susy K,

    I'm honored, and humbled! And it seems, you were born the same year as my son! YIKES!

    Brownie


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