Survey: Should nurses from other countries be recruited to aid in the nursing shortag - page 14

This month's survey Question: Should nurses from other countries be recruited to aid in the nursing shortage? Please take a minute to take answer our survey and please feel free to reply to... Read More

  1. by   Gromit
    Quote from Nemrac
    Thanks Gromit. You can imagine my surprise (i have been lurking in this thread but not posting until now) on Sunday morning as I opened up the paper over my bowl of lucky charms..
    The Magically Delicious ones? Hmm. Haven't had a bowl in many years. More of a Raisin Bran nut, myself.
    I was just amazed at you finding a news story that was so perfect for the topic. I printed out a copy for my floor. Go on shift tonight at 7p (tues).
  2. by   totallytheresa
    That article is perfect for this topic, because it not only shows what bringing in nurses from other countries will do to our job market, but also what it will do to their countries.
  3. by   StNeotser
    It's interesting to see the survey results, only 22% think that recruitment of foreign nurses are a good idea.

    I graduated both an LPN and an RN program in the US and my motives for moving to the US were purely that my husband, a US citizen did not like living in my native country (the UK). If he was comfortable there, I'd still be there too.

    I realize after reading this thread, when some people are a little "off" with me at work they probably think I've taken a US citizens job. I get grilled daily by somebody as to why I'm in the US and where did I get my license from.

    Next time I work a double shift because nobody (US citizen or otherwise) will come into work to cover that shift and I'm stuck there, I'll try to bear in mind I'm taking someones job.

    I do however, share the same feelings that many of you do, that there is an unbelievable amount of stress caused by short staffing, and feel that if nursing were made more attractive to nurses who have licenses and are no longer practicing, and to make the field more attractive to students making career choices, there may not be a nursing shortage.
    Last edit by StNeotser on Jun 29, '04
  4. by   Gromit
    Quote from StNeotser
    It's interesting to see the survey results, only 22% think that recruitment of foreign nurses are a good idea.

    I graduated both an LPN and an RN program in the US and my motives for moving to the US were purely that my husband, a US citizen did not like living in my native country (the UK). If he was comfortable there, I'd still be there too.

    I realize after reading this thread, when some people are a little "off" with me at work they probably think I've taken a US citizens job. I get grilled daily by somebody as to why I'm in the US and where did I get my license from.

    Next time I work a double shift because nobody (US citizen or otherwise) will come into work to cover that shift and I'm stuck there, I'll try to bear in mind I'm taking someones job.

    I do however, share the same feelings that many of you do, that there is an unbelievable amount of stress caused by short staffing, and feel that if nursing were made more attractive to nurses who have licenses and are no longer practicing, and to make the field more attractive to students making career choices, there may not be a nursing shortage.
    First off, you should stow some of the attitude. The complaints here were (for the most part) the lack of (and in some cases lack of desire to even try to learn) ability to communicate in the nationally spoken language. If >I< cannot understand you, how is the Doctor, or patient supposed to? The other thing, that >I< pointed out was that the institutions (I'm trying to say my beef is with THEM, not the nurse) tend to lock them into these lousy contracts, where they give them a pretty raw deal (not compared to what they are used to, but certainly compared to what they give the 'natives') and if the institutions can hire two of them, for the equivalent price of one of "us", then they will lower the standard of what a nurse should get by way of compensation -that affects ALL of us.
    And before you go on about taking someones job, you, being from elsewhere, should know first-hand how much easier it is to get a job in the states, than it is to get jobs in most other places (I'm not talking thirdworld countries, here) -we are allowed to hire from outside. When I was in Spain, a foreigner had to be in great need, before they would hire you to do ANYTHING.
    And unless I missed it, I didn't see anyone complaining that their jobs were taken. But I did see plenty of complaints that many of the foreigners don't even try to learn our language, they seem to expect you to accomodate THEM. Now you tell ME what other country does that. In most ways, OURS does.
    By and large, the United States accepts foreign workers much easier, and in greater numbers, than any other country. But I don't see where a company should have the right to take advantage of the foreign nurse. Also, just passing the written exams required to show proficiency in nursing should not be enough. You should be able to understand what they say. Verbal communication is extremely important, I would think, in nursing.
    Last edit by Gromit on Jun 29, '04
  5. by   totallytheresa
    I agree with what Gromit said. I'm sure you must know that coming to the US with your husband and becoming a nurse here is quite different from what this thread is all about. The big beef here is the actual going out and RECRUITING nurses from other countries!!!! Which is not your story in the least.
  6. by   missmercy
    It is so frustrating!! As the staff development department, I was given the job of "culturizing" these nurses from India -- they were given three full weeks of "pre-orientation" before they started real orientation. I was not given any options as to whether or not we would hire them -- their contract was bought out (by the hospital) from a recruiting firm. They are nice gals, have decent skills, are highly motivated and will probably be great additions to our staff. I like them -- personally -- not just as nurses, but as people. I feel bad that their highly educated husbands can't find jobs in the fields that they were educated and practiced in in India (lawer, engineer) and that they are working at Wal-Mart trying to make ends meet. However, I do have an issue with the fact that I know 3 nurses who have similar qualifications for employment -- were turned away so that these gals could be hired. There are American families in the same boat as these gals' families... only the Indian families will have the employed adult BECAUSE they are on the "foreign exchange" program.
  7. by   Euskadi1946
    Quote from Hellllllo Nurse
    [/B]

    mfdteacher, I agree with you totally. I know several excellent RNs whom have left nursing and now work in a flower shop, a cinnamen bun shop, a vet's office, etc. It's all because of working conditions and the way we are treated.

    There is no flippin shortage.
    I'm one of those nurses who graduated at 46 yrs of age, wanted to work L/D but was told to get some med/surg under my belt. Did two years of med/surg and probably would have loved it if it wouldn't have been for the staffing. I worked nights with minimum of 8 patients and counting on a nephrology/med/surg unit. I burned out and went to work in an ob clinic where I took a big cut in pay, tried agency nursing in med surg and ob, then went to work for an insurance co as a case manager, worked post partum for a while and I'm now working for the Utah State Health Dept. I was making great money but the staffing shortage finally got to me and I left floor nursing for good. I plan on staying with the state as long as possible. You can't beat the bennies and it's nice working M-F 8:00AM to 5:00PM with w/e and all federal and state holidays off. Nurses here who want to work in the hospital can almost name their price but you would not believe how many nurses are scrambling to work for HMOs, the state, the county and Uncle Sam in a case manager, clinic environment and you ask any one of them why they left the hospital and it's the same complaint no matter where you go...STAFFING!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  8. by   StNeotser
    Quote from Gromit
    First off, you should stow some of the attitude. The complaints here were (for the most part) the lack of (and in some cases lack of desire to even try to learn) ability to communicate in the nationally spoken language. If >I< cannot understand you, how is the Doctor, or patient supposed to? The other thing, that >I< pointed out was that the institutions (I'm trying to say my beef is with THEM, not the nurse) tend to lock them into these lousy contracts, where they give them a pretty raw deal (not compared to what they are used to, but certainly compared to what they give the 'natives') and if the institutions can hire two of them, for the equivalent price of one of "us", then they will lower the standard of what a nurse should get by way of compensation -that affects ALL of us.
    And before you go on about taking someones job, you, being from elsewhere, should know first-hand how much easier it is to get a job in the states, than it is to get jobs in most other places (I'm not talking thirdworld countries, here) -we are allowed to hire from outside. When I was in Spain, a foreigner had to be in great need, before they would hire you to do ANYTHING.
    And unless I missed it, I didn't see anyone complaining that their jobs were taken. But I did see plenty of complaints that many of the foreigners don't even try to learn our language, they seem to expect you to accomodate THEM. Now you tell ME what other country does that. In most ways, OURS does.
    By and large, the United States accepts foreign workers much easier, and in greater numbers, than any other country. But I don't see where a company should have the right to take advantage of the foreign nurse. Also, just passing the written exams required to show proficiency in nursing should not be enough. You should be able to understand what they say. Verbal communication is extremely important, I would think, in nursing.
    I wasn't really replying to any of your posts, but I was replying to "we don't need foreign nurses" "I'm always going to take an American over a non-American" and that type of thing. I just found it enlightening because nobody is ever likely to say this to my face, but instead they ask me as to why I'm living in their country and where did I get my education. For some naive reason I thought this might be because they were genuinely interested, but the statistics on the poll and replies to the thread prove otherwise.

    I'm not really that offended either, and I undestand the language barrier can be very dangerous.

    I've also now read up a little on the contracts some unscrupulous companies lock foreign nurses into. It isn't fair to take advantage of them.

    For the record, the UK also has to recruit from overseas. It isn't as easy to get into the US as you think, I waited 11 months to get a greencard as a spouse. My husband waited only 6 weeks for his to go to the UK. Also for the record, when I worked for the Department of Employment in the UK, application forms for unemployment benefit were written in 32 different languages including Urdu, Chinese, Hindi etc. So the US is not the only country that has immigrants that don't learn the language, nor is the USA as easy to get into as you think it is. Spain does not equate to the rest of the world when it comes to employment for foreigners.

    And yes, I realize I'm one of those foreigners that needs to sling my hook.
  9. by   swhyte
    Once again we are on about the recuitment of foreign nurses. I think that this topic will never go away because there are so much rage in some of these responses. These rages are being afronted by "THE HORRIBLE CONTRACTS THAT THESE NURSES SIGNED". Dont use this to cover your bases. Tell it like it is" FOREIGN NURSES ARE COMING TO THE U.S TO TAKE OUR JOBS" its as easy as that. Stop cutting corners and using the nurses contracts and their language barrier to cover how you are definately feeling. I know a lot of people will have my neck for this....One respondent to one of my letters was very personal and when I replied back to the mail I was accused of being personal. But guess what? the truth hurts. I dont really care. I am speaking from the heart.And very soon this back lash is going to be so wide spead where as nurses will be afraid to even go to work,or even dont want to come to your country.....THEN WHAT?.. ..Dont blame them because they want a better life,blame the hospital admin,
    and agencies who are recuiting foreign nurses. Some of you need to sit down and ask your selves why is this happening. Start looking in to your back yard. There I said it'''''.I agree with CeCiRN continue to sling your hook and keep the faith.
    Last edit by swhyte on Jun 29, '04
  10. by   UK2USA
    It appears to me that this is a flashpoint for many US nurses, with numerous points to the argument.

    As a UK nurse coming over to the USA shortly I feel that my thoughts may be added to the discussion.

    It seems that the main concern is the retention of staff - rather than the employment of new nurses. Well, unfortunately this is a buyers market... labor has (and always will be) bought at the cheapest cost. For those nurses that have left the profession in search of higher pay and better conditions - I fear that they have learned an important lesson - They are regarded as expendable!!! Sad as that seems I feel that bringing these people back to nursing is an almost impossible task. For those that feel that this would be the right thing to do I ask one question: If the 'ex-nurses' are to return will they need to be reformatted to the job as it may have changed in the time that they have been absent. And how much of a change in salary etc would they need to see?
    This is not a situation that is experienced by the USA alone, most of the developed countries are hiring staff from some of the more 'undeveloped' countries. Generally you can count on the fact that they are trained to the appropriate level, are proficient in their job and have a drive to succeed in a foreign land. I agree that communication should play a necessary part in the introduction of these nurses. As Suzanne4 has stated, there are English tests that have to be passed in order to obtain a working position in the USA. Personally, I have never found a foreign nurse that has been completely unfathomable in the accent department.. however I have worked with some UK nurses whose regional accent has been so strong that I can never understand what they are saying!
    So, it comes down to this:
    Would you rather take away the foreign nurses (and their skills, support etc) with the intention of recruiting your 'ex-nurses'. If so are the remaining active nurses prepared to cover the period of transition... because, call me a pessimist, but i doubt that you will have the luxury of retraining staff and keeping the foreign nurses in the interim. I for one, would be happy with a nurse who knows what they are doing, can provide good patient care and help me out with the workload. I don't really care if they have a better salary (it gives me the incentive to negotiate a better deal for myself) and I don't care what their mother-tongue is as long as they can accurately describe the clinical side of their work and can write properly.
    One last comment to those who talk about the importance of being understood and understanding what is being said.... take a look at your own spelling, some of the posts on this forum from native english speakers are probably more difficult to interpret than your foreign colleagues!
    Last edit by UK2USA on Jun 30, '04
  11. by   fergus51
    Xenophobia is alive and well in many places....
  12. by   totallytheresa
    You know what? Instead of being critical of us US nurses before you even come here, why don't you take a look at what this whole topic is about!!!We're not talking about a few nurses coming here to work, etc... we're talking about the active recruiting of foreign nurses. Enough already!



    Quote from UK2USA
    It appears to me that this is a flashpoint for many US nurses, with numerous points to the argument.

    As a UK nurse coming over to the USA shortly I feel that my thoughts may be added to the discussion.

    It seems that the main concern is the retention of staff - rather than the employment of new nurses. Well, unfortunately this is a buyers market... labor has (and always will be) bought at the cheapest cost. For those nurses that have left the profession in search of higher pay and better conditions - I fear that they have learned an important lesson - They are regarded as expendable!!! Sad as that seems I feel that bringing these people back to nursing is an almost impossible task. For those that feel that this would be the right thing to do I ask one question: If the 'ex-nurses' are to return will they need to be reformatted to the job as it may have changed in the time that they have been absent. And how much of a change in salary etc would they need to see?
    This is not a situation that is experienced by the USA alone, most of the developed countries are hiring staff from some of the more 'undeveloped' countries. Generally you can count on the fact that they are trained to the appropriate level, are proficient in their job and have a drive to succeed in a foreign land. I agree that communication should play a necessary part in the introduction of these nurses. As Suzanne4 has stated, there are English tests that have to be passed in order to obtain a working position in the USA. Personally, I have never found a foreign nurse that has been completely unfathomable in the accent department.. however I have worked with some UK nurses whose regional accent has been so strong that I can never understand what they are saying!
    So, it comes down to this:
    Would you rather take away the foreign nurses (and their skills, support etc) with the intention of recruiting your 'ex-nurses'. If so are the remaining active nurses prepared to cover the period of transition... because, call me a pessimist, but i doubt that you will have the luxury of retraining staff and keeping the foreign nurses in the interim. I for one, would be happy with a nurse who knows what they are doing, can provide good patient care and help me out with the workload. I don't really care if they have a better salary (it gives me the incentive to negotiate a better deal for myself) and I don't care what their mother-tongue is as long as they can accurately describe the clinical side of their work and can write properly.
    One last comment to those who talk about the importance of being understood and understanding what is being said.... take a look at your own spelling, some of the posts on this forum from native english speakers are probably more difficult to interpret than your foreign colleagues!
  13. by   mother/babyRN
    I too think the UK nurse who was put off by the survey results should include herself ONLY if she has a problem with communications skills or job performance because that is what we are talking about. No need to get so upset as was evidenced in your post...Your perception of the results is, in my opinion and those of many of us here, inaccurate...It isn't about the foreign nurses not being wanted..It IS about treating the nurses we already have appropriately and professionally financially and all the rest RATHER than failing or refusing to do that and THEN purposely recruiting nurses in some cases with less skils willing to work for less money and in some cases difficult communication. THAT is the insulting and infuriating part. As for you ( the poster I spoke of)..Welcome...Think about losing the attitude...Or, if you are being treated incorrectly or wrongly, speak up...I do..

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