opening up nursing the profession to spanish speakers? - page 3

I just posted a thread called, " Is there cultural diversity in the nursing profession?" and on a similar topic I would like to put out another question. I am a C.N.A. and have noticed that maybe as... Read More

  1. by   purplemania
    If they want it hard enough they can become RN's. My son married a Swede, moved to Stockholm and learned the language. He has worked steadily since he got there (programmer). While they lived in US his wife had to learn to read and write English well enough to pass exams for her job as flight attendant. My friend from Mexico did not know English 10 years ago and is now completing her business degree at an American university. It can be done and I applaud anyone brave enough to try. As for NCLEX, I think it should be worded differently anyway. It eliminates too many people by the mere language, and that includes people whose first language is English. It sure does not separate the good nurses from the bad.
  2. by   fab4fan
    Originally posted by Pamelita
    Hey guys... Its true if you live here you should learn to speak english... but that's easy to say than done. Can you imagine being in your 50's and coming to a whole new country??? getting used to the culture, people etc and learn a whole new language? Sometimes when I get comments about some people because I speak spanish not good comments, something like: speak english in a rude way! I think, gosh I wanna see YOU in a spanish country and HOW Long it would take YOU to learn fluent spanish.
    we always have to look both sides of the picture.
    Yes, it takes hard work to learn another language...but coming to this country is a privilege. We are not obligated to provide services etc to the point that one can spend an entire day and never utter one word of English, and get along perfectly.

    You've got to want it bad enough. Most people I know are very patient when they see someone trying to speak
    English, but it absolutely makes my eyes cross when I see someone who has been here 20, 30 years and still can't speak English (yet somehow, they manage to get welfare, Medicaid, foodstamps....seems to me if you have the wherewithal to get them, you could find some time in your day...since you're not working...to learn the language).

    After a certain point, it's just pure laziness, IMO.

    And I agree with the person who said that no one is barring Spanish speaking people from becoming nurses. Sometimes the only bars that exist are the ones in your mind.
  3. by   Momto3RN
    Having lived in France for 18 months, I well understand the frustration of not speaking the native language!!

    I think ANYONE, regardless of age, circumstances, etc., can learn enough of a language to function and they should, IF ONLY for their own benefit!!

    I well remember going to the post office and not knowing enough French to ask for stamps. Although the teller was polite, it seemed to me that the look he had on his face was one of sheer delight at my ignorance!

    A few months later, I could buy stamps with ease and actually converse with this same teller! TAWANDA!!!
  4. by   Momto3RN
    A quick addendum:

    A good reason for official languages in my opinion : The French language, spoken properly, is absolutely beautiful and very descriptive. Unfortunately, it has become increasingly infiltrated with terms that detract from its beauty and thus its distinctiveness due to the laziness of those unwilling to learn the correct terms i.e. " faire du shopping" instead of "faire les achats". Those of you who speak French will know what I mean.
  5. by   Rustyhammer
    Peeps,
    I have never felt my license was at stake because I spoke a language other than english at work. I also would never insist that two Indian girls talking amongst themselves stop their conversation and speak english just because I happened to be walking down the hall near them.
    Although there are several different languages spoken in our facility I haven't seen any breakdown in care.
    We use language boards when caring for a navajo, for example, that has certain phrases. these phrases include body parts and words like eat, pain, dining room, toilet...this enables us to care for these pts without translators.
    The other unwritten rule is we don't speak a language that isn't understood in front of someone who doesn't understand it.
    For example, nobody would be speaking spanish only at a meeting if there was someone at that meeting that didn't understand spanish. That is kind of rude.
    However, if at a meeting where everyone spoke spanish, why not speak spanish. I have been to many meetings where spanish and english were interchanged.
    Of course, this is our culture here in NM.
    -Russell
  6. by   fergus51
    Waggy, I love french slang. This may be because I am a Canadian and our french is already a little different, but languages are living, breathing, dynamic, things. English takes words from other languages all the time and makes it our own. My 86 year old grandpa actually knows what "la vida loca" means I hope he doesn't know some other ones like "menage a trois" I think it's great! The problem with the french is that they disdain other languages and want french to go the way of latin: unchanging and boring.
    Last edit by fergus51 on Sep 23, '02
  7. by   crazygirl
    Hey all, I work with some great spanish speaking nurses. they have worked hard to learn the medical terminology necessary and do a great job. If you all think back didn't medical terminology seem like a foreign language to you the first time too!! wow it's hard for all of us and regardless of your native tongue you need to be diligent in your studies and work hard!!
    anyone can succeed if they work hard enough )
  8. by   Peeps Mcarthur
    By Rusty

    I have never felt my license was at stake because I spoke a language other than english at work. I also would never insist that two Indian girls talking amongst themselves stop their conversation and speak english just because I happened to be walking down the hall near them.
    If I didn't know you beter,I would think you were taking what I said out of context to make an argument for speaking other that English.

    Would your license be at stake if you were counting on....say, a nurse from Zimbawe to give acurate oral report as they walked off the floor to get..........whatever that was they said......STAT!

    Also,I don't think you should have to ask the two indian people in your example to stop being rude either.

    I agree.
  9. by   Pamelita
    HI :0
    whoever quoted my post I know exactly what you mean of someone who has been here like 30 years and cannot still speak english. Some people are just lazy, but we cannot generalize people. It took me 2 years to finally feel comfortable, I think a lot of people don't speak the language because they feel that others will make fun of them because of their accent etc.
    I speak spanish with my spanish coworkers. In my hospital 80% of the nurses are filipino and they speak it all the time. I am half filipino and I don't speak a word. I speak fluent spanish.
    I believe spanish nurses who wish to work should have a programm or some kind of help, because once they learn english they can enter the workforce and help this nursing shortage that affects us all. Nurses are nurses regarding their language
  10. by   Vsummer1
    Today in clinicals I did a head count of the students, caucasion and minorities -- not including the men who I feel should be a minority when thinking of nursing -- and the minorities outnumbered the caucasions slightly in the total population. Also, the caucasions were the minority in open skills lab today (optional class after mandatory lab for those who want to practice) there was only ONE out of about 10 students in the group who was caucasion. The races who are in the majority are Philippino, Hispanic and African American.

    I just don't see any discrimination in our RN program at all, and I think it is GREAT!
  11. by   VictoriaG
    Wow, this topic sure got us all stirred up! IMHO, communication and the art thereof, is the most important talent and responsibility of a good nurse. All day long, every day we work, we are expected to communicate effectively to doctors, to patients and their families, to co-workers, to management. To those of us who have been nurses many years, honest and concise commmunication has become knee-jerk. In this place and time, in this glorious country, English is how we communicate.
    Enough said.

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