Is there REALLY a nursing shortage? - page 15

This is an interesting article guys/gals... Here's the letter I wrote to the President, Vice-President, U.S. Congress Rep. and Senator: "I'm an R.N. and I recently started working as an agency... Read More

  1. by   Aquamarine
    Quote from PACNWNURSING
    Is there really a nursing shortage of total number licensed nurses as a whole, or is there a shortage of nursing willing to work med/surg units in hospitals? It seems every 7 years there is an announcement warning of a nursing shortage. Yet admissions to nursing programs have increased every year for the past 20 years. I just think nurses start on the those med/surg units to gain experience and quickly move on.

    What do you think?
    I think htere is a national shortage, however, many times the hospital will run nurses ragged saying they can't get nurses, or even support staff to cover. I know for a fact, nurses that leave in good standing and want to work per diem are not approached, are not called, sometimes it is pitiful. Gee, I wonder why nurses are leaving the floor type nursing? Hospital systems are corrupt....maybe it is survival financially, but it isn't working. More money, more people leaving, more money to train, etc. Not to mention our goal: patient care "is" compromised. I think they could do better but don't see the forest through the trees sort of thing. They fix it for today, to fix the budget this month, this year, but arent fixing the entire, long term nursing shortage....it is a negative cycle. Hosptial administrations of the hospital systems.... seem to be anti-nurse in general.We are the back bone of the hospitals. Someone is making money....it isn't the nurses. Getting paid for the responsibility, the emotional stress, the physical wear and tear, the daily...putting your licience on the line because of staffing issues.....sound attractive to you? A rose at Christmas, a christmas party you have to pay your way to, a card from the administration...a nice card, sorry....those don't cut it.:angryfire There are other places nurses can work, work less, and make the same or more and have lives with less stress. I for one would prefer floor nursing, but the attitudes of these large hospital business corps....don't make you want to continue, even though you love patient care.a sad commentary.
  2. by   jjjoy
    Quote from Retired R.N.
    Maybe you could do all of us a favor and explain exactly how the Kansas State Nurses Association is an advocate for all Kansas nurses. The last time I checked it was a member of ANA, and most of us feel that ANA is not considered to be an advocate for all U.S. nurses.
    Nothing can be ALL things to ALL people. By getting involved in an existing organization, such as a state nursing organization, you have more chance to hear what they are advocating for and to have some input into what they are advocating for. The more you disagree with them, the more your voice is needed. If more hospital/LTC nurses joined such organizations, and not just paying dues but actively engaging in policy debates, then perhaps the organizations would better reflect the majority of nurses.

    If the organization won't allow for shifts of position from within its ranks, then it would be great if some nurses could get together to create an organization that will listen to its members. Of course, that's a lot of work. Most of us have full-time jobs, families, etc. I know I'm not going to go out and start such an organization myself so I'm not goign to complain that no one else is doing it either. It could be something to take up in retirement - if I ever get to retire!
  3. by   Aquamarine
    Amen!! you are right on, I have suspected this for so long and quit my job because of it. When I think of how fast I went, how the patients had to wait in serious need, how I couldn't take one minute to go to the bathroom, and didn't sit down until the next shift was there for at least an hour to start my charting fromt he previous shift.....very stressful, money is a powerful thing I guess. Not for me....I walked away from it....miss it, wanted to take are of the patients....how sad.
  4. by   hope3456
    I live in Colorado - recently visited the state BON website. They say that, in this state anyway, there is a shortage of 'experienced nurses to work in specialty areas.'

    This proves the theory of the 'bottleneck.' Schools can graduate all the nurses they want, but hospitals can only train and hire so many new grads at a time - especially in the ICU's.
  5. by   Aquamarine
    The shortage is still at large a moral issue. If you graduate enough nurses...they get good training, good "experience"....work in hospitals, move to the specialty areas....new grads take thier places.....a flowing cycle. The cycle breaks when: facilities treat nurses less than optimal, pay is less than optimal or benefits too expensive (same thing), short staffing as a method to control budget, nurses quit....temporary shortage, new staff, more training, less than optimal training, frustration leads to poor care, nurses not staying in jobs, etc, etc.It isn't moral to treat any profession disrespectfully....yet nurses who are there to do their best for the patients...the backbone of the facility, the survival of health for the patients....what more could you respect? The shortage is preventable, the programs in place to retain nurses...mentors, etc. they are deficient in the facilities that really don't get it. There is only so much the mentors can do but watch the poor training, the frustration. They can and do offer support...but the nurses need the acutal respect to correct things, in every way.
    There are enough graduates.....the rest is history.
  6. by   Aquamarine
    Let us not forget everyone learns at a different level, in their own way, in their own time. Aren't we as RN's the medical profession supposed to understand that. A nurse is trained when she feels she is trained, not when the hospital says..."time's up". All ages, all learning abilities involved...but the common denominator is that they care, they want to take care of the patients, and learn as individuals. 6 patients doesn't sound like a lot but you know the complexity of your assignment can turn that into a nightmare. I have had 10...related to the fake shortage. And I felt like crying for the man that needed to be cathed...the lady with weeping wounds that needed a dressing change, the lady that was put on the bottom of the priortiy list for just, only, wanting an ambien because it wasn't an emergent situation...but in reality....every patients need is emergent....what a shame that you have to choose who to help.
    The administrators are getting bonuses, big ones for saving money and making the sitaution what it is....and who is going to complain. They get a pat on the back for the financial budget....at the expense of who?
  7. by   Lizzy6
    Quote from Aquamarine
    The shortage is still at large a moral issue. If you graduate enough nurses...they get good training, good "experience"....work in hospitals, move to the specialty areas....new grads take thier places.....a flowing cycle. The cycle breaks when: facilities treat nurses less than optimal, pay is less than optimal or benefits too expensive (same thing), short staffing as a method to control budget, nurses quit....temporary shortage, new staff, more training, less than optimal training, frustration leads to poor care, nurses not staying in jobs, etc, etc.It isn't moral to treat any profession disrespectfully....yet nurses who are there to do their best for the patients...the backbone of the facility, the survival of health for the patients....what more could you respect? The shortage is preventable, the programs in place to retain nurses...mentors, etc. they are deficient in the facilities that really don't get it. There is only so much the mentors can do but watch the poor training, the frustration. They can and do offer support...but the nurses need the acutal respect to correct things, in every way.
    There are enough graduates.....the rest is history.
    Good post Aqua.
  8. by   Lizzy6
    Quote from Aquamarine
    Let us not forget everyone learns at a different level, in their own way, in their own time. Aren't we as RN's the medical profession supposed to understand that. A nurse is trained when she feels she is trained, not when the hospital says..."time's up". All ages, all learning abilities involved...but the common denominator is that they care, they want to take care of the patients, and learn as individuals. 6 patients doesn't sound like a lot but you know the complexity of your assignment can turn that into a nightmare. I have had 10...related to the fake shortage. And I felt like crying for the man that needed to be cathed...the lady with weeping wounds that needed a dressing change, the lady that was put on the bottom of the priortiy list for just, only, wanting an ambien because it wasn't an emergent situation...but in reality....every patients need is emergent....what a shame that you have to choose who to help.
    The administrators are getting bonuses, big ones for saving money and making the sitaution what it is....and who is going to complain. They get a pat on the back for the financial budget....at the expense of who?
    Another excellent post. I have felt the same emotions as you related in regards to "choosing". It made me sad, and still makes me sad..... and of course it makes me angry the way facilities/companies are run. Also, you were talking about how nurses learn and are trained. Many new (young & older) are leaving the profession with barely a year under their belt, due to the environment and working conditions, where they do not get much support. I left bed-side nursing due to the conditions, since nothing seemed to change & I felt it was detrimental to my health. Every week you look in the paper and the same ads for the same hospitals, nursing homes, etc..are looking for nurses. I see bright colored ads in the nursing spectrum and advance magazine advertising for the same facilities, only their ads are glossy and they promise a nice open house and possibly tea & cookies during their open house. A lot of job hopping going on, nurses looking for better working conditions and not to mention decent pay, benefits etc.
  9. by   Teachchildren123
    Quote from Freedom42
    Right on, Ingelein. There's no shortage of nurses. There's a shortage of nursing jobs in good working conditions.

    If you haven't already seen it, you might find this report from the Institute for Women's Policy Research quite interesting. It's called "Solving the Nursing Shortage through Higher Wages." Bottom line: When hospitals boost wages, nurses go to work for them.

    The report also addresses nurse-patient ratios, which are supported -- in concept only, at this point -- by the union in my home state, the Maine State Nurses Association. Given that the union has just voted to affiliate with the California Nurses Association, this could get interesting.
    You took the words out of my mouth. Good working conditions with fair pay and pension would bring nurses into the profession. Everyone of us could have written a study titled "Solving the Nursing Shortage...."! ;.)
    My hospital had a campaing on hiring 100 nurses in 100 days, giving a bonus to the referring nurse to the new hire. I think that they short of 100. But now, the region will close 2 hospitals, bringing out some of these new hires and people like me with 10 years seniority to be bumped by more experiences nurses. So...
    I am glad that your association is affiliating with the one from CA. I am very impressed, from such a small state, you guys rock! Here in Buffalo (in my hospital), our nurses union is the same as the housekeeping union and truck drivers (not to be degrading or anything, but not quiet in the health field, less power into our credibility), in a perfect world we would all nurses together!
    Last edit by Teachchildren123 on Dec 23, '06
  10. by   Teachchildren123
    Quote from Freedom42
    Right on, Ingelein. There's no shortage of nurses. There's a shortage of nursing jobs in good working conditions.

    If you haven't already seen it, you might find this report from the Institute for Women's Policy Research quite interesting. It's called "Solving the Nursing Shortage through Higher Wages." Bottom line: When hospitals boost wages, nurses go to work for them.

    The report also addresses nurse-patient ratios, which are supported -- in concept only, at this point -- by the union in my home state, the Maine State Nurses Association. Given that the union has just voted to affiliate with the California Nurses Association, this could get interesting.
    You took the words out of my mouth. Good working conditions with fair pay and pension would bring nurses into the profession. Everyone of us could have written a study titled "Solving the Nursing Shortage...."! ;.)
    My hospital had a campaign on hiring 100 nurses in 100 days, giving a bonus to the referring nurse to the new hire. I think that they short of 100. But now, the region will close 2 hospitals, bringing out some of these new hires and people like me with 10 years seniority to be bumped by more experiences nurses. So...
    I am glad that your association is affiliating with the one from CA. I am very impressed, from such a small state, you guys rock! Here in Buffalo (in my hospital), our nurses union is the same as the housekeeping union and truck drivers (not to be degrading or anything, but not quiet in the health field, less power into our credibility).
    Last edit by Teachchildren123 on Dec 23, '06 : Reason: Need to remove this quote: duplicate from above
  11. by   Schatzi RN CEN
    I work in a small CAH with a staff of 6 full time RNs, three PRN RN's and two LPNs. We have not had to advertise for a post for over 6 years, had a nurse move on recently and have so far not been able to replace her regardless of ads in multiple newspapers. - so what does this say - nursing shortage yes or no?
  12. by   sweetie29
    I need a school that offer LPN in illinios please help
  13. by   worldtraveler
    The Only Answer for Better pay and Working conditions(Safety-think issues like Floating and mandatory OT) for most nurses is Unionization. Until that happens the posts will continue to read as most do here,,,,
    Last edit by worldtraveler on Dec 23, '06

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