WHERE HAVE ALL THE NURSES GONE? - page 2

i AM THE PUBLISHER OF A MEDICAL NEWSPAPER REACHING 31,500 HEALTHCARE PROFESSIONALS IN KY. ONE OF THE TOPICS WE WISH TO DISCUSS IN OUR JULY ISSUE IS THE NURSING SHORTAGE. CAN ANYONE PROVIDE THOUGHTS... Read More

  1. by   PPL
    Hi Joe. Can you be more specific, and let us in on the economics from your perspective? I hate math. Thanks.
  2. by   josh_RN
    I have to agree with Joe. I am new to the Kansas City, KS area and i was shocked at the low pay nurses get here in this area. I moved down here from Lincoln, NE where my base pay was $20.00 a hour. here i had to take a night position to make WITH the night differential $20.00/HR. I was told there was a nursing shortage down here but all i know is that the hospitals seem to choose to be short on staff. their not in any hurry to get back to you after you interview with a job offer. 4 weeks after a interview is to long admins. the hospitals are all antiquated. Paper charting, paper med administration, paper orders. paper this, paper that. I spend more time with the paperwork that anything else. I mean i move 180 miles out of the sticks to a "modern city" and its like i stepped back in time to 1970. makes the antiquated UNIX system we had at my old hospital look damm good. this along with long hours, manditory overtime, uncompensated call, exposure to danger in the workplace ( biohaz ) and little respect as a medical professional because i am a nurse are driving me to another career. Cannot wait to finish my C.I.S.
  3. by   lita1857
    Well probably not what you thought you'd hear from "Florence Nightingales" huh? I read thru all the posts myself and for the record if I'm sick I want one of the nurse's who took the time and effort to respond to be the person I trust my life to.Is it all true, will it be as bad as predicted? In 20yrs will there be not enough nurses to care for sick patients? Apparently the public is willing to gamble. Remember what we said here, you may have an article that will be intelligent and articulate.Let's ask the question alittle different, "Why would a person want to go into nursing?"work long hours of physically grueling work,be paid as little as possible for that, work on weekends and holidays when everyone else is with their families or try all hours, most people are crawling into bed at 11pm. How about being at risk for every disease? I could go on and on but I won't bore a non-nurse, the point is even the really good reasons for going into nursing are either not enough any more or not enough to interest smart ambitious people. Next time people are ill they might want to think "who will take care of me"because as a nurse of 23yrs you will not benefit from my talents unless I decide to use them.
  4. by   debcote
    Let me share this with you; I could work my tail off for 40+ hours a week, NOT INCLUDING MANDATORY OVERTIME (Which by the way, is an EXTREMELY unsafe practice), Get paid only $15.00 an hour(and I already have a Bachelor's Degree), and wonder if I will get sued for something completely out of my control, OR I could work for myself, PART TIME earn over $500 a week, HELP PEOPLE, and spend time with my family. WHAT DO YOU THINK I DID?

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  5. by   RN739
    I agree with everything that lita said, I am
    a "veteran" also, practicing for 30 years, &
    still at it. While being a nurse has meant a
    great deal to me over the years, I have seen so many changes in our profession. There are
    times I hardly recognize this profession anymore. I have a daughter who is also an RN,
    but I don't think I would like my grandaughters to be nurses. Of course everything is about that healthy "bottom line", which is great for the stock market,
    but hey, we are dealing with human beings,
    not investments. I started out as a Diploma
    grad at a hospital-based county hospital, &
    I am glad that I did. Now I have a Masters,
    but the training I received in working Trauma
    at the County, helped me through all the years I have worked. I still love being a
    nurse, and I really can't explain it. It's
    kind of crazy, especially when you read the
    headlines in our Tribune about how RN's are
    supposed to be killing pts.with mistakes. I
    have friends who are working in Nursing Homes, where on the 11-7 shift they have 2 RN's to cover an all LPN/CNA staff, for 278
    pts. Are they insane? We desparatly need to
    change the manner in which we take care of our sick and elderly. Maybe the time has finally come when those changes will be made,
    they are certainly overdue. I dropped out of
    nursing for over 19 months, because I was so
    "burned-out", I was afraid I would make a
    mistake & harm a pt. I have returned to a
    part-time position with a registry & I make
    $33/Hr. I control my schedule, not the hospital! I have a life again, and I love it!
    I guess I have to realize that I am a person
    first, and a nurse last. So while I still
    enjoy what I do, I don't think I could reco-
    mmend that anyone go into nursing, especially
    while the financial aspects of healthcare are
    up in the air and unresolved. Thanks for
    listening, this is my first post, and I am
    really glad I found this forum.
  6. by   missouriman
    I agree with all these posts, when I started nursing school there were all these grants and plans that would help you pay off your student loans. Now I work hard and give one pay check a month to pay on that student loan. Due to pay and work load I get to thinking that if I work this hard at any thing else I could make more money.
    I love helping people, but think that it is time to help my self. I am also going to try travel nurse for awhile, pay sounds very good at least you know that they just can't work you much harder then you are working now.
    would be nice if there were any way to get student loans forgiven when you graduate and prove that you can hold a job...

    there are fewer nurses nursing due to over work and under pay. oh,, and pitiful raises as a thank you..
  7. by   John_G
    I'd have to agree with the general consensus of this board. Overworked, underpaid working in a sue happy environment, who could ask for anything better?
  8. by   KimmyNrs2be
    I must be crazy to continue nursing school. Is anyone out there happy?????? Do you know the ONLY thing that makes me feel good about my nursing education? The fact that I will be able to take care of my family should someone get sick and be hospitalized. With the way nurses are being treated today, there won't be any decent ones left in the hospital!!!!
  9. by   applegal
    To those who are really interested about actually publishing/reporting about the sad nursing situation, why don't you do a NURSING 24/7. Seems were so interested in what actually happens in the hospital setting, it would be an eye-opener to say the least to have a news reporter follow the daily life of a real nurse...the unedited version. After leaving the military, I was ready to resume bedside nursing only to see the sad decline of our profession due to the lack of all the above. What else will I do? I'm still trying to answer that one, but you can be sure it will be on my terms and not of the six figure consultants/administrators who make the decisions without a care or a clue...
  10. by   BROWN_KK
    I must admit that though we sound harsh the realities of nursing are as stated in every state of this country. We are all underpaid and under respected for the grueling and draining work that we do every day. Notice that we are somehow never spotlighted on TV. There are shows about all sorts of other medical professions. We would not prove exciting enough I guess. Well lets see some of these doctors or administrators comfort a dying patients family while admitting a major head injury, or deal with agitated and combative patients that are trying to take your arm off while filling out the reams of restraint papers and trying to get the order from the physician who stands at the door and watches you, then walks away. It is a ridiculous environment to work in and I cannot imagine we are ever going to attract more people to the career if this is the way it is going to stay.
  11. by   babs_rn
    Funny someone mentioned construction work. I am back in school for a degree in Building Construction and Contracting. I have been an RN for over 12 years and I am part of the mass exodus from the profession and no, I DON'T feel guilty about it. The schedule is interfering with my close personal relationships. After busting my butt all day, (12+ hrs) I have no energy left for my loved ones. It takes several days to recover physically and mentally from working 3 12's in a row. It's not just the time, it's coming home feeling like you've been hit by a truck. But thanks to my long and irregular hours, my children live with their father and not with me. THAT has gotta change. So sayonara, Nursing. And I won't look back.
    Babs
  12. by   bbnurse
    While many of the comments are true, I am one who is still happy with nursing. There are changes that I have seen over the past 30 years. The nurses are aging. There are far more outside the hospital opportunities which nurses are finding. More entrapenurial use of their education contributes to the exodus. Hospitals' face poor reimbursements from insurance, HMOs, Medicare, Medicaid and no money from the multitudes who have no health care plans. Doctors don't want to be generalists, the money is in specialties. Access to care in limited to the affluent. It is a societal issue.
    If nursings' average age is mid to late 40s, where are the replacements coming from? Schools report that once they could chose the cream of the crop with 3 applicants for every slot to fill. Now, they are lucky to fill each slot each year. The applicants, besides being less driven to fulfill the desire to nurse, are in need of basic education. Schools are setting up remedial math and science courses for persons who will care for the ill someday.
    Hospitals in the area report a 50% vacancy rate for RNs. The only comment I have about those hospitals, is that these are also the ones which are now unionized and have the nurse patient ratio mandated for them and of course they can't meet that requirement. There aren't nurses graduating from schools. Those who graduate, only want to work days, M-F. What happened to working up the ladder or doing your time? One new nurse quit cause her kids didn't like her going to work.
    Well, duh...what did they think going to school was going to accomplish if not work?
    Enough rambling. It's a lot of things that has affected the nursing profession, not the least of which is the lousy hours, pay and lack of respect by physicians, patients and those holding the purse strings. And all of them want immediate curbside service with a smile and "fries with that"...
  13. by   nurseliz
    Here in New Jersey we do have a shortage, for quite a few reasons. I think the main reason is that Medicine in general is not what it used to be. It's being run as a "corporate" business these days. Hospitals are being run by conglomerates who come in and buy a large amount of hospitals, labs, MD practices, nursing homes, etc. and as in any other business are looking to cut costs to the bear minimum. They don't look at patients/residents as people, but as a asset...something that brings in $$$ and the services they provide as a liability. They have forgotten, or just plain chose not to acknowledge that we as nurses deal with human lives and that these assets are HUMAN BEINGS. Do you know that a cashier in a local off name grocery store who does nothing but ring up groceries makes $10.50 an hour, but an LPN who works in a hospital starts out at $12.99 an hour??? Once again...what is this saying about the corporate thinking in medicine today?

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