Is this the publics perception of nurses? - page 14

i am a charge RN in a cvicu. yesterday i took care of a man that was pod1 5 vessel cabg on a balloon pump and multiple drips. i had post op'd the pt the previous day so i had developed a repor with... Read More

  1. by   askater11
    Susy K I always enjoy reading your post.

    You and I are so much alike. We both enjoy educating ourselves inside and outside of school.
  2. by   hapeewendy
    agreed 100% on that one too!
    that was one of the major points in the presentation I did in class regarding skill mix
    some scary stories out there of "nurse impersonators"
  3. by   Q.
    Originally posted by rncountry
    Forgive me but I personally don't give a flying F**k what John Q. Public regards as a "worthy" education.
    Jesus H. Christ, Helen - *points finger* - you SWORE!

    Ok now let me try to word this right. I don't care either what most people think (apparently - as I piss a few people off sometimes saying "what I think") but sometimes it seems we also have to choose our battles wisely. By that I mean, we're going to gain respect (and logically, pay would follow) when the public, society, admininstration, understands and appreciates what we do. We have a very hard time ourselves defining our roles to each other. Some say a nurse is her psychomotor skills, some say a nurse is her mind and healing art. Some say it's both. Yes, I agree, educating the public about who/what we are will help a bit, but honestly, I don't know the inner-workings or fully understand attorneys, pilots or a host of other well paid and respected professions. The public sees us as "helping the sick," and really, do they need to know more? Honestly, until we can agree on what is and what is not a nurse, how can we educate the public about it? We got nurses here calling aides "nurse Judy" and calling vet techs "nurses" (I know, another thread).

    I've always said that a college degree is the universal language, if you will, across disciplines and across society. People may not understand what you do, but they understand what a Bachelor's degree or an Associates degree means. For us to speak to the public about our education and "smarts", we need to speak their language. Right or wrong, the language in our society is formalized higher education. Otherwise o me, it's like trying to tell a person who only speaks Italian what we do, but speaking it in Spanish, knowing full well they speak Italian but refusing to do so just to prove a point.
    Last edit by Susy K on Dec 30, '02
  4. by   MishlB
    Why does everyone throw the word 'respect' around? I met an EMT who was entering the LPN program. I asked her why she was now going into nursing and what she planned to do. She said she would not pursue RN, and that she wanted to be an LPN for "respect". Her attitude was so crappy, but she thought, "if I am a nurse, I will have respect." WRONG....no matter what you do, you are not automatically respected, nor does a bigger paycheck follow...(didn't quite get that comment...)
    If you become bothered because a 'non-nurse' asks about your education, that's too bad. Then go back to school and earn another degree. You still won't have the 'respect' you are searching for.
    We should all wear nametags that say NURSE.....maybe then there wouldn't be a problem.
  5. by   MishlB
    Originally posted by Susy K
    Jesus H. Christ, Helen - *points finger* - you SWORE!

    I've always said that a college degree is the universal language, if you will, across disciplines and across society. People may not understand what you do, but they understand what a Bachelor's degree or an Associates degree means. For us to speak to the public about our education and "smarts", we need to speak their language. Right or wrong, the language in our society is formalized higher education. Otherwise o me, it's like trying to tell a person who only speaks Italian what we do, but speaking it in Spanish, knowing full well they speak Italian but refusing to do so just to prove a point.
    College degrees are required for certain professions, but not for all, as stated in an earlier post. A degree was not always needed for nursing either, but since times have changed, we must comply. I don't think even the general public understands the difference in Associate's and Bachelor's degrees. Why do we need to take time to educate the public about what our titles are and what degree we hold as nurses, when we should be focusing on preventative health care education and the like. I would much rather talk to teens about the risks of smoking or unprotected sex, then why I have an Associate's degree but I am still an RN. Sure, go to a high school job fair and explain a little to them about nursing and its options. But as for the rest of the public, they just want to be made to feel better when they are sick. Period.
  6. by   Sleepyeyes
    but....

    to paraphrase an old saying: "Ya can't live on respect."
  7. by   Q.
    Originally posted by MishlB
    Why do we need to take time to educate the public about what our titles are and what degree we hold as nurses, when we should be focusing on preventative health care education and the like.
    Because unfortunately, there is no money in preventative health care, and alot of people like insurance companies and hospital administrators don't care about preventative health.

    Even so, if the public and society (which includes our administrators, etc) don't understand what it is we can do, they won't buy into it or see us as useful.

    I believe nurses are key in promoting the health of America and keeping overall costs down. But no one else really sees it that way. For example, schools eliminated school RNs but yet at the same time, some have physicians there instead to treat and promote wellness to children. Now why is a physician doing that when clearly, a nurse can and should be? I believe it's because John Q doesn't think we can do that kind of thing. We follow orders and that's it. THAT'S why I feel it's crucial to educate about we CAN do and who we are - so we'll be best utilized, respected for what only a NURSE can give. What does a nurse give right now that can't be given by a great CNA? Or a great tech? Or an awesome physician? In that answer lies our salvation, I believe.
  8. by   SmilingBluEyes
    "Because unfortunately, there is no money in preventative health care, and alot of people like insurance companies and hospital administrators don't care about preventative health.

    Even so, if the public and society (which includes our administrators, etc) don't understand what it is we can do, they won't buy into it or see us as useful.

    I believe nurses are key in promoting the health of America and keeping overall costs down. But no one else really sees it that way. For example, schools eliminated school RNs but yet at the same time, some have physicians there instead to treat and promote wellness to children. Now why is a physician doing that when clearly, a nurse can and should be? I believe it's because John Q doesn't think we can do that kind of thing. We follow orders and that's it. THAT'S why I feel it's crucial to educate about we CAN do and who we are - so we'll be best utilized, respected for what only a NURSE can give. What does a nurse give right now that can't be given by a great CNA? Or a great tech? Or an awesome physician? In that answer lies our salvation, I believe."---SuzyK.******************************************** *

    Suzy, you and I may not see eye-to-eye often, but I have to agree with this post. You are correct. And while we may not LIVE on respect, it means a helluva a lot to most self-respecting people. The nursing community NEEDS to be self-respecting to survive...or else all we will attract to our ranks are people who don't give a flying frig the job they do and how it's done. Is THAT who we want taking care of loved ones, friends or ourselves one day?

    PS: (I am still too dim to learn how to quote people in the bold way as you guys do, so I just did my best cut/paste and gave credit where due, sorry, Suzy).
    Last edit by SmilingBluEyes on Dec 30, '02
  9. by   fab4fan
    Just a comment about putting degress, etc. on name badges. The hosp. I work for only allows you to put your level of licensure, no more. I could have a BSN, and my CEN, and it still would just have, "my name" RN.
  10. by   rncountry
    :roll I do that upon occasion! You made me laugh!
  11. by   semstr
    Fab4, NEVER say you are a "lowly" diploma-nurse! I'll scream my head off, when you do that again!
    First I am one myself and I don't think of myself as a lowly RN, and second, 2/3 of the European nurses would be lowly.
    And third, as long as we talk about ourselves as being lowly-educated, how on earth do you want these John Q (like that one) to get a highter opinion of you?
    And out of this thread, bye Renee
  12. by   Riseupandnurse
    I will betray my age with this post, but I remember a time when nurses got a lot of respect. I started out as a nurses' aide in the 1960s and there was strict ranking of nursing personnel according to uniform in our two local hospitals. No non-licensed personnel could wear a lab coat. No non-nurse could wear white stockings. All nurses wore their caps. LPNs had colored bands on their caps and only RNs had the coveted black bands to their caps. The nurses got respect from the doctors and the patients and their families. The RNs got even more. I remember so many times that a doctor would come onto the floor and want to talk about a very sick patient. That doctor would go straight for the nurse with the black band. We had a few male RNs (not many), and the ones we did have were in the ICU. Those male RNs wore black bands on their sleeves.

    I know *all* nurses hate caps, but I think we as a profession made a big mistake when we started dressing just like the nurses' aides. Even as a practicing nurse now for many years in the same hospital, I have to get close enough to read the name tags on healthcare personnel I don't know before I can tell what their level of training is. What is wrong with nurses wearing something that distinguishes us from others? Would we feel more secure if our policemen and firemen all started wearing street clothes, and if soldiers gave up their uniforms and medals?

    I know many will think this is a politically incorrect post, but it would be nice to have a little more respect for what we are and what we do. Would it be so wrong to meet the public halfway by letting them know there are differences?
  13. by   MishlB
    Originally posted by janhetherington


    What is wrong with nurses wearing something that distinguishes us from others? Would we feel more secure if our policemen and firemen all started wearing street clothes, and if soldiers gave up their uniforms and medals?

    I know many will think this is a politically incorrect post, but it would be nice to have a little more respect for what we are and what we do. Would it be so wrong to meet the public halfway by letting them know there are differences?
    TOTALLY AGREE!!!!!!!! Most of the time I don't know who the nurses are from housekeeping. Everyone is in scrubs of all colors. Some in sweatshirts too. Although the hat thing is a little scary and in my opinion not practical, couldn't nurses all wear the same scrub top, or something? By floor or department? I know some places do this already. Maybe all white? UUUUUGGGHHHHHHHH...I know I will get blasted for that one!!!!!!!!!!1

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