Wisconsin: Nursing shortage survey part of license renewal

  1. Nursing shortage to be studied in Wisconsin
    By JOEL DRESANG
    of the Journal Sentinel staff
    Last Updated: Nov. 26, 2001
    http://www.jsonline.com/bym/news/nov...-web112601.asp

    Three state agencies and seven organizations representing nurses and their employers began an electronic survey Monday to learn from Wisconsin's 70,000 registered nurses how to address the state's nursing shortage.

    The mandatory survey, conducted as part of nurses' license renewals, will take nearly six months to complete and is intended to seek information on why nurses leave the field and what can be done to retain them.

    The state's shortage of registered nurses is expected to increase in coming years as the population continues to age, more residents require health services and more nurses retire.

    "We know there is a critical nurse shortage in Wisconsin and that it is only going to get worse," said Jennifer Reinert, secretary of the Department of Workforce Development. "What we don't know is why the shortage exists and what we can do to reverse that trend."

    Reinert's agency has teamed up on the survey with the Department of Health and Family Services and the Department of Regulation and Licensing. They're joined by the Wisconsin Nurses Association, the Wisconsin Nursing Coalition, the Wisconsin Association of Homes and Services for the Aging, the Wisconsin Health Care Association, the Wisconsin Homecare Organization, the Wisconsin Health and Hospital Association and the Wisconsin Association of Local Health Departments and Boards.


    For more information, go to www.dhfs.state.wi.us/healthcareinfo/RN
    Last edit by NRSKarenRN on Nov 28, '01
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  2. 4 Comments

  3. by   P_RN
    I couldn't get the link to open, but if this is mandatory, and it being public record, would the BON release comments by disgruntled nurses?

    On my application for renewal, my "employer" was listed along with my statement of how many hours I worked the past year. This is compared with the employers statement.

    I wonder if they will get totally truthful answers?

    Just wondering.
  4. by   NRSKarenRN
    NOTHING is checked re practice hours NOR is info collected re employment status, work within or out of state in PA. NO CEUS required. No employer requested. As long as you pay license fee and your check clears, you may renew. If you hold a license in another state via receprocity from PA, any discipline against license in another state, that IS reported back to the state and grounds for discipline here.

    We have NO WAY of gathering workplace info in PA, a point we have been hammerin away to our legislators.

    We have about 126 schools of nursing (Diploma 24, Associate 22, BSN 34= 80 RN; LPN 46): no data collection or central bank re where these graduates go to practice or obtain initial licensure, how many work in state , out of state; Full or part time status.

    How many RN's and LPN's employed by healthcare facilities in the state?; How many nurses planning to retire or stop practicing?
    ...NOTHING to guide us in ensuring adequate students + nurses to practice on our state.

    With todays sophisticated computer programs, it's criminal....
    My 2 cents. Karen

    P.S. RE above survey: I was able to access website and FAQ section---info confidential from employer.
    Last edit by NRSKarenRN on Nov 29, '01
  5. by   wildtime88
    {"We know there is a critical nurse shortage in Wisconsin and that it is only going to get worse," said Jennifer Reinert, secretary of the Department of Workforce Development. "What we don't know is why the shortage exists and what we can do to reverse that trend."

    Reinert's agency has teamed up on the survey with the Department of Health and Family Services and the Department of Regulation and Licensing. They're joined by the Wisconsin Nurses Association, the Wisconsin Nursing Coalition, the Wisconsin Association of Homes and Services for the Aging, the Wisconsin Health Care Association, the Wisconsin Homecare Organization, the Wisconsin Health and Hospital Association and the Wisconsin Association of Local Health Departments and Boards.}


    The first thing that come to me after reading this part is disrespect. Nurses at the bedside have been telling anyone they could about the poor working conditions, poor pay for the duties and responsibilities that have been placed on us, and the treatment we have received. No one seemed to want to listen or even cared a rats ass about what us or what we had to say. That is the reason why many nurses have already left. The people on this list are the same people we tried to talk to with all but a couple of exceptions. Now all of a sudden they want to listen? This shows just how much respect we have gotten in the past. This also proves just how far out of the loop the leadership of one of our own associations truly is when you think about it. It does not take a genius to figure out that the nurses in this state are any different from any other. There have been many surveys already conducted, in fact there have been too many done to study the problems, yet once again here is another one.

    After all the data is collected, confirmed, and collated, then they will sit down individually and come up with all their ideas. Then they will get together to discuss all of them. The next step will be to throw money into nursing programs, talk about using other groups as alternatives to nursing staff, and then bicker back and forth about mandatory OT and nurse to patient ratios.

    I can also see a lot of buck passing going on before it is over with and I do not mean the kind you can spend. I am sure some where along the way someone will try to put the blame on this on nurses. Someone will insinuate that nurses are either greedy, uncaring, lazy, or unprofessional.

    A lot of us know that in reality it is our own fault for allowing it to get this bad and even continue to get worse. We could have stopped this as a group many years ago. Sorry guys, but I wish we had a national organization with the guts and muscle to lead us into taking control of our own profession. Instead the only one we have chose to run to Washington for help basically saying that we were not able to fix our own problems, let alone take charge and control our own profession. Someone basically pulled out the dusty old manual titled what to do in a nursing shortage which has been around for a century and used every 10 or so years and followed the same old steps that did not actually fix the problems then and will not fix them today. They have succeeded in getting legislation started to throw money into nursing school, increase visa limits, which incidentally were lowered just 6 or 7 years ago, but not a whole hell of a lot more. They succeeded in opening the door for the hospital association to step in and run with the ball on that one. I am sure the nurses who work for and around the Cleveland Institute are very grateful for that. I am sure there will be many of us before it is over with that will be grateful as well.

    Well anyway that is already been set into motion and it seems like the nursing leadership, and I use that word loosely, is content to let it continue. I have yet to see a call from them for a national protest which actually would hit home saying we are not going to allow it. Has anyone else? But on a side note they did raise their membership dues and I am sure that each state under their control will follow and not just to cover their increase either. Nurses at the bedside, for the most part, have not gotten any substantial raises in the last 6 to 8 years, our out of pocket expenses have continued to rise as well. So I do not want to hear about how much money it is costing to send out this or that or anything else. I am sure that no one near the top of the organization is staying at Motel 6 when they travel to this or that. Do you?

    Anyway enough said about that. Now, would it not be great if we did have a national organization who would lead us and rally us all together to say NO MORE!, from now on we are going to be in charge of out own practices and profession. We are going to set the rules under which we practice under. This includes staffing ratios, including ancillary and support services. This also includes the paper work which is filled out as well as the initial evaluations and assessments for other departments such as dietary, social services, case management, physical therapy and the like. They will have to actually come to the bedside to see the patient and do their own initial evaluations and assessments. Customer service is not a nursing function so if you want to promote the atmosphere of the Ritz then you will have to hire non-nursing personnel to do it. And one more thing, you pay other companies for nursing time so now you will have to find a way to pay us what we are actually worth and if that mean you personally take home a million or two less each year in pay, bonuses, or benefits, then too bad. We will not feel bad if you have to give up your luxury car for a mid sized chevy or start sending you kids to public school with ours.

    How nice would that be. How many changes do you think we could make for the better? How long do you think it would be before we could say to someone without hesitation thinking about coming into nursing that it truly would be a great choice as a career and profession?

    Just how much longer and other forms of disrespect do we have to endure?
  6. by   Enright
    I am a transplant to WI. I find that in general WI employers take advantage of the fact that natives do not want to leave the state. IMO, that has kept wages low here. A high percentage of young adults who leave WI end up moving back later in life. It was my experience that the hospitals here felt they had nothing to worry about. I found them to be arrogant in this regard.

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