Here is an article form the nursing times. Backs up what I have always thought.
So if nurses loose compassion and burn out after 2 years qualified,
that's 5 years practicing, I nursed (non qualified) from 2002-2007, right on target
for burn out.
I don't want to work for the NHS long term
Nurses 'lose' compassion in first two years of practice
21 April 2009 | By Helen Mooney
The erosion of compassion starts early in nurses' careers, according
to a new report by the healthcare think tank the King's Fund.
The perception that nursing is becoming less compassionate has
prompted both the government and individual trusts to explore ways of
measuring nurses on their levels of compassion.
A new King's Fund report Enabling Compassionate Care in Acute Hospital
Services concludes that nurses need better support during the earliest
years of their career if they are to be more compassionate to
The full report, seen by Nursing Times, said that while most students
entered health care because they wanted to make things better, after
qualifying they become less empathetic and more distanced from
'Newly qualified nurses have a coherent and strong set of espoused
ideals around delivering high-quality, patient centred, holistic and
evidence-based care,' the report stated.
'However, within two years in practice the majority of these nurses
experienced frustration and some level of burnout as a consequence of
their ideals and values being thwarted.'
The King's Fund also warned that if trusts placed too much emphasis on
finance then levels of compassion among their nursing staff were
likely to suffer as a result.
'If finance and productivity are perceived as being the only things
that matter it can have profound negative effects on the way staff
feel about the value placed on their work as caregivers,' it stated.
'This makes it more difficult to cope with the inevitable emotional
and psychological demands of the job.'
The report recommended that more emphasis needed to be placed on the
'human aspects' of clinical care in pre-registration training, with
'values' of showing compassion 'instilled'.
Additionally, it called on trusts to better support nurses in dealing
with the stress they faced working on the frontline, which could
It said NHS trusts would do well to offer regular support through
groups and stress management workshops to staff.
'The regular support of a group of colleagues who face similar
situations can be an ideal opportunity to speak out about traumatic
and difficult encounters and dilemmas faced recently,' the report
May 12, '09
i was nodding, till i got to the part about support groups.....how about more staff?= less burn out?
May 12, '09
definitely more staff would lessen the stress and burn. But what about all the extra jobs put onto the nurses, that needs to be looked at and assessed properly?
May 20, '09
I remember when I was a student and I went to work for an agency as an auxiliary to earn some extra money. I was sent to a nursing home and I remember crying all the way home at the way those poor people were treated. There was no unusual abuse or practice going on, just standard everyday nursinghome care. Patients were dragged around, left on commodes undressed, etc, due to short staffing and burnt out nurses. About ten years later I was on duty and exhausted one night when I checked on a patient and could see they needed changing. I put the covers back over the patient and decided to leave it for the next set of rounds. I then spent the next few minutes with the fact that I could even think like that plaguing my mind. I got another staff member and went back and did the change, and then I went home at the end of the shift and resigned. I spent a couple of years as a tutor because I knew I needed a break from it for the sake of the patients but I can definately relate to the article. It is sad because when I started I was a good, compassionate human being but now - not so much. I am back as a nurse now, but in the ER where the patient contact is short and sweet, and it suits me better. I have noticed though that with family members who are ill - I am not a normal compassionate ear. Also when a family member dies I do not seem to get as upset as other people. It worries me. I sound awful I know, but at least it worries me, in that there must be hope!!!:icon_roll
May 26, '09
Well - duh!
It took a report to finally make people believe what nurses have been saying for years?
Too heavy a workload. Too many patients who are too ill. Not enough time to do a job properly. Too many whiny relatives who think we sit around all day not doing anything. Incompetent hospital management. Not enough equipment. Being paid barely enough to survive. Constantly frustrated at not being able to talk to patients due to lack of time. Crumbly old buildings that leak when it rains. The list goes on and on.
The kind of person who wants to go into nursing is the kind of person who cares about the welfare of others and genuinely wants to help. After a period of time (in the case of the report, two years) of being unable to do what you feel is a good job, is it any wonder we switch off? We are human - not robots.
Many times I've got to the end of the shift from hell and think 'No major disasters happened today. How in God's name did we get away with that?'
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