Got to get my two or more cents in on this topic.
I agree with your summaries and the previous posts. Lesliee is correct in indicating that new grads don't get enough of what they need to practice confidently as a competent nurse. PPL is correct in writing that it is not the pay that is the major problem in nursing.
Since I have been a member of this BB, my review of posts indicates that:
1.There is a problem with intradisciplinary support in nursing. It starts out in nursing school
with nursing educators who are not objective, not politically(not to be confused with party affiliation) savvy, and have inadequate people skills.
2.Managed care has disrupted the comfort zones of all health and medical professionals.
3.Demands of the aged along with the aging "me" generation baby boomers and their "no, me" gen-xer children have increased the frustration level of bedside nurses who already are stressed out from all the restructuring going on in the name of "the bottom line."
4.Many nurses are not wholly engaged in formal life long learning activities which is required nowadays to keep up with the increasingly rapid pace of change in health and medical care.
Also experts write that the average age of nurses in practice today is mid 40's. No doubt, this is one reason many experienced nurses are going into nontraditional fields of health and medical care. This along with potential nursing candidates going into other fields that are less challenged than nursing will possibly contribute to a longer than expected shortage. Some experts predict a severe nursing shortage for the next 20 years. Also, need to include the fact that the proliferation of for profit health and medical services in the last decade have probably negatively impacted entry into nursing practice and nurse retention.
Currently, I am in home health(HH). As a former hospital nurse, I feel that in the future, it will become difficult to distinguish between hospital and home nursing practice in terms of frustration levels. In the last several years, increasing pain has been inflicted upon us. With the advent of PPS which is similar in many ways to DRGs, the pain will become unbearable for many nurses, aides, allied health practitioners, and patients. All this in the name of "the bottom line."
With regards to your specialty Rick, I recently read that many ERs are having a time of it with the increased number of nonemergency visits. It seems like the health care delivery system needs a good restructuring. In fact, this problem probably should have been addressed long before the money and power issue.