Let me explain where I work as an RN...I am in assisted living. There is ONE nurse per shift for 150 residents. CNA's or unlicensed caregivers do all meds (I know scary but I didn't write the rules) and care...
The one nurse has to handle all the orders, treatments, MAR's, 90 day orders, faxes or communications with physicians, appointments, lab orders, prn scheduling, injections (including all diabetics and all CBG's), wound care, caths, O2, oversees all CNA/Caregivers, assessments, admits, acute situations, approval and ordering of any in room meals (must have medical reason for trays), any staff questions, family questions, PR, staff injuries, all incident reports, check and make sure all charting is complete, fill in for receptionist or find someone to fill in three times a shift, Service plan additions/approvial, assignment and deligation...and inservice teaching twice a month!!!!!
Okay...think that is overwhelming...it gets better! They have chosen at my facility to have LPN's to work full time to do what they can do...and RN's part time minimum so they don't have to pay RN's for benifits or Lord forbid any overtime! (I just talked to one of the RN's and she was called into the office for...oh get this folks...she clocked in ONE MINUTE early from lunch break...and got chewed out accusing her of trying to get overtime!!!!!!! OH for goodness sakes!). Therefore anything that has to have RN approvial or doing...well, get to do it in the rare 8 hour shifts 2-3 times a week when you are allowed to come in!
Too many patients...heck yes!!!!!! Too much charting needed now by medicare or simply CYA...YES! Lack of nursing support or RN staff...YES!!! Administration putting additional non nursing tasks on RN's...YES...Time to actually do a real assessment or SPEAK to a resident??? HECK NO! Patch up and go and CYA is the name of the game now a days..and how sad that is!~
I don't blame you for questioning WHY and SHOULD I??? If I knew what I know now...I would have said...forget it! But I chose to be a nurse, I chose the facility...and I take it all down to one thing in my mind....
"no matter how hard it is...no matter how unappreciated I feel...no matter how much it hurts my spirit at times...if I wasn't here...can I trust someone with the care and support I give my residents to be done by someone else??? In the same way my residents are accustomed to, comfortable with??? Do I want this to ever be a regret if I leave??? (I am a biggie on not ever making a regret...especially thanks to my residents advice).... ALL of the time I come up with NO, no other nurse would put up with the Bullsnookles I do...so I better keep at it for the sake of my team (staff..we are a team!) and residents.
I wanted to quit after 3 months...I am now officially on year 4!
Think about WHY you personally do what you do...and keep that in mind when you falter or feel low...pick that reason well...and it will always guide you, even if it is a pain in the keester most of the times..LOL!