Do we get what we deserve?

  1. Has anyone ever considered that nurses are undervalued, overworked, and underpaid? Of course you have. I see it in every bulletin board on this web site. I am a recent grad from nursing school(May 2000) and in nursing school I always heard from my instructors that nurses always complain amongst themselves about injustices in the workplace but that nothing ever changes because no one stands up to take a real stand? I never really understood what my instructors were talking about until I actually got out into the workforce and witnessed it for myself. It is so true. And this web site is a prime example of it. Alot of complaining but no organized action. The nurses I work with are continually put into situations that compromise patient care. Usually one of two things happens. Either the staff nurse just takes up the slack and complains to her friends or she tells the supervisor how she feels and the supervisor (who is a nurse, by the way) says tough *$!%, deal with it. I'm sure this scenario is repeated in just about every hospital in the country. Are there any nurses out there who are willing to commit and dedicate time to improving the profession? I for one am in. I have looked around and have seen some success stories. Please respond to this bulletin if you think we can make some sort of difference. Or if you think I am completely off my rocker, I would like to know that too.
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  2. 6 Comments

  3. by   pickledpepperRN
    You are in the right state.
    We have passed Nurse Title protection, Whistle-blower law, and a staffing bill. Please check us out at: www.calnurse.org
    Now you can act to help us. Please start by attending a Town Hall Meeting. If possible take the JustHealthCare class too.
  4. by   JillR
    This is what I do when I get the typical tough sh#% response. I just calmly tell them that I have now made them aware of the situation and will put my complaints in writing. It is amazing how extra help comes out of the woodwork when the problem I legally put in their laps.

    I do not do this to be a jerk to anyone and I explain to them that I need to protect my licence and this is what I am going to do to protect it.

    I do not believe in comlaining horizsontally, it does not fix the problem and only makes the tension worse on the floor, if you need to make a compliant, make it upwards.
  5. by   nursedude
    Redeye,

    This post of yours caught my attention... The statement "nothing ever changes because no one stands up to take a real stand" also irked a response from me and so my friend I am writing this response to pose to you and other readers the question: What action is considered a "real stand"?

    In the healthcare situation that nurses currently find themselves in just what action will it take to gain the attention of the CEO's of such companies like: CIGNA, Kaiser Permanente, Aetna, USHealthcare, Columbia Healthcare, Lovelace Healthcare and Highmark BlueCross/Sheild? Combined, I would bet that the total assets that these national and international companies have eclipses the Trillion dollar mark... So again I ask you and any of the other readers of this post, "Just what the hell kind of action from the largest pool of manpower in healthcare will get the attention of the CEO's of the Healthcare giants?" Again, please keep in mind that when I speak about the largest pool of manpower in healthcare I am talking about nurses. This "large pool of manpower" is also by the way, percieved by most in the healthcare industry as also the largest piece of overhead in healthcare...

    So again, I ask you all, what is it that we can do that will gain the attention of "the healthcare giants"?

    Some say "organize and march", others say "unionize" and others say other things...

    Here is what I said.

    "I quit."


    Here is a link to the thread on this site with the most replies(almost 200 replies). This thread deals with your question "Do we get what we deserve?" among other issues.
    http://allnurses.com/bb/Forum80/HTML/000005.html
  6. by   nursejanedough
    OK, we nurses are overworked and underpaid, but I am here to tell you who the real nurses are...NURSING ASSISTANTS!..and they are grossly underpaid. I am a registered nurse and if you have ever worked in long term care, you know it is the CNA's or whatever you want to call them that do the really, really hard work. Believe me, I know because they don't show up for work most of the time (I don't blame them) and I have to change crappy diapers, turn, push and pull patients to change sheets, lift them to wheelchairs, try to bathe and feed screaming, hitting confused patients, etc. etc. (I really don't know if you could pay me enough for what they do). I want the CNA's to organize or unionize or whatever needs to be done, because I don't want to lay in my soiled diaper and develop decubitus and become malnutrioned, etc. in a few years from now.
  7. by   nursesrthebest
    Originally posted by nursejanedough:
    OK, we nurses are overworked and underpaid, but I am here to tell you who the real nurses are...NURSING ASSISTANTS!..and they are grossly underpaid. I am a registered nurse and if you have ever worked in long term care, you know it is the CNA's or whatever you want to call them that do the really, really hard work. Believe me, I know because they don't show up for work most of the time (I don't blame them) and I have to change crappy diapers, turn, push and pull patients to change sheets, lift them to wheelchairs, try to bathe and feed screaming, hitting confused patients, etc. etc. (I really don't know if you could pay me enough for what they do). I want the CNA's to organize or unionize or whatever needs to be done, because I don't want to lay in my soiled diaper and develop decubitus and become malnutrioned, etc. in a few years from now.
    ALRIGHT NURSEJANEDOUGH! I SECOND THAT!
    I was a CNA in LTC, and they get no repect. They are treated like mules! I'm right now getting my BSN, and once I finish- the NA will have my repect. Been there, done that. They too deserve more pay!
  8. by   Mijourney
    Hi redeye. I believe that if you review some of the posts in detail, you will find that some nurses on this bb have taken matters into their own hands one way or another. Most actions are reactive, but the problem still gets addressed. Please note the following actions by nurses: job changes; formal reporting of incidents; discussing staff shortages with patient and families; participation in incentive awards; establishing contracts with administration based on hospital mission, goals, and objectives; returning to school; being promoted; striking; marching; quitting; and the list goes on. I don't believe there is one remedy for the dilemma that nursing constantly finds itself in. There are nearly 2 million nurses in the U.S. which should translate into power and respect for nurses. We have recognition as a group. Instead our numbers, our diverse backgrounds, and possibly the fact that nursing is predominately female seems to be a liability for us in terms of advancing a large group agenda. We can get some solace in the fact that we still rank high in the consumer satisfaction surveys. But, as nurses, we are essentially viewed no more than a maternal sidekick to the physician at best. It's still not clear to me that we are considered as professionals although I feel like one. The media certainly doesn't help in this area. The resolutions for the problems that plague nursing are right here on this bb in the form of questions, comments, gripes, snipes, and so on. It's just a matter of reading between the lines in some cases and finding the courage to apply what you feel is appropriate to your real life situation.

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