nurses 50+ leaving the profession

  1. Nurses,
    Could you give me some reasons why you left the nursing profession. I would like to hear from nurses 5o year or older, but will accept replies from any nurse. Thanks.
    ww2
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  2. 13 Comments

  3. by   Simplepleasures
    Hi, first I will ask you to PLEASE read my post in the general forum titled, WI Healthcare Worker Retaliation Protection Act.I personally have left nursing because I am now blackballed by my former employer for reporting to a state agency and got fired for it. I have had my day in court and despite mounds if evdence and witnesses I lost. My attornies have assured me we will appeal this all the way to the Supreme Court if need be. Also the nursing profession is very physical and I have been disabled by severe DDD, DJD of spine and knees and carpal tunnel of hands.Nursing homes are trying to get more and more acute care units that bring in more bucks,but are VERY busy and unsafe , due to the staffing ratios in nursing homes and the VERY sick patients that are being admitted to these units.Older nurses just cannot keep up with that pace.Again PLEASE read my post regading Retaliation Laws, we all need to get together and give ourselves some clout.
  4. by   tntrn
    I am almost 58 and eagerly looking forward to the day I can retire, hopefully in 2 years. Reasons: I've put in my time. I'm tired: of the politics mostly, but that filters down to poor staffing which filters down to overwork, which filters down to body aches and pains, not to mention not being allowed to adequately hydrate ourselves (no drinking fountain inside our locked unit and not allowed to have cups, or even capped water bottles anywhere in sight), and no breaks or meals. No support from administration which swears up and down that proper leadership will fix it all. Well, if I don't have enough help, leadership people could get in there and slog along with us, but that's not what happens. I don't want to be told what I'm doing wrong, how I could be doing it right; I want an extra set of hands! Frustrated? you bet.

    I am blessed in that when I retire (per diem, no retirement) my hubbie's retirement plan should be adequate; that is, if airline management doesn't yank his retirement....which they can and would love to do, even after 40 years of loyal service. I guess if that happens it's "paper or plastic" for us.

    Morale where I work is the worst I've seen it in 16 years. It's no longer fun to go to work; the tension is palpable.

    For a health care facility to completely ignore the health of their own employee is shameful.
  5. by   banditrn
    I'll be 58 soon, and I'm just tired. Tired of fighting with uncaring money grubbing management - stupid government regulation, etc.

    My body won't do everything I want it to do anymore. I have aches and pains I didn't have 10 years ago.
  6. by   CseMgr1
    I'm 55, and if I could afford to retire tomorrow, I would. But I have just started working as a Clinical Auditor for my State, and am looking forward to retiring in ten years (if I make it that long). DEBT FREE and with a little retirement money in my pocket. Whether I do or not is going to depend on my back, which has been riddled with DDD for the past twelve years...and is getting progressively worse. At least I won't have to worry anymore as to how my prescriptions and doctor bills are going to get paid. NO way in HADEES will I ever consider working in the clinical area again. I've done my time, thank you VERY much.
  7. by   WhatNext?
    I'm 55 years old. I was fired from a job 2 years ago and was reported to my state Board of Nursing. I was unemployed for three months until I found a job in home care. A year after I was fired the Board contacted me to respond to the complaint. My experiences leading to the firing and then dealing with the Board shattered my sense of competence, and I was unable to deal with the stress of working and writing my response to the complaint. My license is clear now, but I am having a hard time finding a new job. I have just finished temp work giving flu shots for the past 6 weeks, but I need to find a "real" job with health care benefits. Part of the problem in finding work is that I have been blackballed by the hospital system that fired me. Another contributing factor is that I know too well what I will and will not do. I know that Critical Care is not where I function well, that vents and all the other machines have changed since I got out of that field. Home care did not work out well. Telephone work is not to my liking.
    So now I'm a grown up and don't know what I want to do and I find that my choices are limited.
  8. by   DutchgirlRN
    I'm 51 y/o and totally burnt out on hospital work. I did it for 30 years. My body just can't do the 12 hour/no break shifts anymore. I am still in nursing. I am doing home health seeing 3-4 patients a day. Piece of cake, lots of charting but I love it.
  9. by   shodobe
    I am 54 and have worked in the OR for 30 years. I work very hard now and have for a number of years. The money is very good and I want put as much as I can away now so by 62 I can cut back to a mundane existence. I do plan to continue to work a few days a week even after 62, why not? I like what I do and can work as much or as little as I want. I do admit though if I could I would completely retire tomorrow, but that won't happen unless, can you say Lotto!
  10. by   nurscee
    I am a 54yr old RN who is very fortunate to have a job as a telephone triage nurse. This has been a God send for me. I work 40hrs a week, and my days off are my days off.
    No reports to give, no charting to catch up on.
    I still feel as if I am helping people without the politics or backstabbing rat race that goes on in the hospitals.
  11. by   gr8rnpjt
    I am a youngster at 49, but I wanted to respond. I need to work until retirement age (67, at least) I have aches and pains. But I got out of hospital nursing many moons ago and have been doing managed care jobs for insurance companies since 1990 (almost 17 years!) Best decision I ever made. I have Fibromyalgia, and bulging discs in several areas of my lumbar spine. I could never have made it to retirement if I had stayed in hospital nursing. I give bedside nurses mad props, because I remember how hard it is.
    There is no need, however, for a nurse to leave her profession. Insurance companies pay very well for your knowlege and experience. I have done case management, disease management, population management, Utililzation review, (in the office and on site at the hospital) there are many different job descriptions and there is more or less pt contact depending on what you want. I am happy with where I have gone in my career. I was happy to work with patients when I was young and fit and able to work the demanding job of bedside nursing. Now I have a cubicle, computer, phone and pictures of my children and grandchildren surrounding me every day. I have to travel into town every day and pay to park downtown, but as I said before, they pay very well. My current company has a pension plan fully paid by the company, so that is why I came here. I could stay here another 20 years if need be.
  12. by   Cheyenne RN,BSHS


    "totally burnt out on hospital work. i did it for 30 years. my body just can't do the 12 hour/no break shifts anymore."


    "i'll be 58 soon, and i'm just tired. tired of fighting with uncaring money grubbing management - stupid government regulation, etc.
    my body won't do everything i want it to do anymore. i have aches and pains i didn't have 10 years ago."

    "reasons: i've put in my time. i'm tired: of the politics mostly, but that filters down to poor staffing which filters down to overwork, which filters down to body aches and pains, not to mention not being allowed to adequately hydrate ourselves (no drinking fountain inside our locked unit and not allowed to have cups, or even capped water bottles anywhere in sight), and no breaks or meals. no support from administration which swears up and down that proper leadership will fix it all. well, if i don't have enough help, leadership people could get in there and slog along with us, but that's not what happens. i don't want to be told what i'm doing wrong, how i could be doing it right; i want an extra set of hands! frustrated? you bet."



    i am 51 and i say amen to all of the above.
  13. by   nurseangel47
    :angryfire Political double talk, no action taken from direct suggestions from staff in the trenches on the front lines every day with no help at all from the "powers that be...", incompetent and insubordinate underlings, (cnas more interested in taking shortcuts, talking on cellphones IN THE FACILITY, scoffing at writeups as if they can do no wrong,taking too many and too long of a break, etc.), nobody sticking to their guns and banding together as one to fight the money mongrels in corporate suits "managing" the health care system, extreme volume of patients versus ONE nurse to manage their health care delivery, a human body created to last approximately 47 years in theory but expected to keep going to 67 years plus...chronic body pains suggestive of fibromyalgia, definite diagnosed arthritis, gout, diabetes, asthma,(body worn slap out! from too many years at bedside), too many meds to push in skilled nursing facilities to too many residents(anywhere from 28 to 30 per unit), not enough physical help with heavy or obtunded patients, to be fair, cnas are too overburdened, also, and not all are incompetent, lazy, etc. don't flame me for above statement, please!
    I have been in nursing for 20 years. A dream I always wanted to fulfill but it has become a living nightmare. I have a promise of a job next week I'm going to shadow for a couple of hours and pray that the manager hires me for it. Part time working in ....(drum rolll.....) a doggy day care center.
    Will piece meal that with part time private duty or per diem visits in home health or agency work, one client at a time and nonjudgemental four legged furry bundles of love...how could that NOT be fun! What a change from nursing! I love nursing. I love helping folks of all ages and all acuities. Just am not physically able to do it anymore full time. Not enough money saved for retirement so will plan on working until I drop in my shoes in whatever job I end up in up and until the end....!
    I think I've covered my main issues here. Not to sound negative. It's the nature of the health care management beast these days. I hate it. It use to not be this way. I actually use to look forward to going to work!
    No one but other nurses seem to understand. My family certainly doesn't. But it's not them out there busting their hump and putting a professional license on the lines, not to mention liabilities. (*lawsuit happy public...!)
    More power to the younger ones who can still shovel the poop in the hospital settings...I could not. Even if I wanted to. My body is shot!
  14. by   mvanz9999
    Quote from shodobe
    I am 54 and have worked in the OR for 30 years. I work very hard now and have for a number of years. The money is very good and I want put as much as I can away now so by 62 I can cut back to a mundane existence. I do plan to continue to work a few days a week even after 62, why not? I like what I do and can work as much or as little as I want. I do admit though if I could I would completely retire tomorrow, but that won't happen unless, can you say Lotto!
    A nice, refreshing post....it's nice to see that not EVERYONE is so burned out they can no longer do the work.

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