tell me the worst things about nursing

  1. No really, give it to me. I wanna hear it. You see I think I have a different idea about what i can do with my BSnN. (only just applied to uni.) You see I think I can become an educator (I am a Registered Nutritional consutant currently) and work in schools and with families/children/new moms/ adolescents etc. I don't want to be just giving injections or meds all day I don't want to work in ER or OR or acute care and I don't want to work in a hospital. Please tell me about your daily jobs, what exactly do you do?... Am I crazy to think nursing is the answer for me with all these 'don't's already set out??

    So go ahead tell me the truth about nursing- if I opt out of hospital work what is left for me? Do the grueling 14 hr. shifts only happen in hospitals? Is it hard to get a job with a pediatricans office? or in schools?
    Thanks guys- I so appreciate your words of wisdom.

    Yours in health,

    Jen ?? ???
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  2. 14 Comments

  3. by   fergus51
    What you want sounds a lot like a public health job, which I think are excellent as far as conditions go. Most are 9-5, mon-fri with weekends and holidays off. A very nice job, and some are openning up to new grads, especially in rural areas and on the lower mainland. The public health nurses here do a wide variety of roles from immunizations to school health to baby visits, to mental health to geriatric assessments. It is a wide open field, but if you stay on the lower mainland you would probably specialize in one of these areas. You may have to put in a few months or even a year in the hospital, but you will definitely find a spot in PH eventually and it sounds like what you want to do.

    If you want to become a nursing instructor, you would most likely need your masters though.
  4. by   renerian
    Wow my public health was nothing like that. I worked sometimes 3 or 4 weeks without a day off, oncall up and down all night then to work all day. No holidays off , zero weekends off. LOL. I just switched to a SNF to get some time off. LOL. Did it like that for 11 years.

    renerian
  5. by   renerian
    Oh yeah I have been robbed twice in home health as the thief wanted my nursing bag, had a gun pulled on me and got through a gang fight. Home health is not for the timid........gotta be able to run duck and hide......

    renerian
  6. by   SHELLYBELLYRN
    Just a reminder.........if you work in a pediatrician's office as a nurse, you will most likely be giving injections all day, so if this is something you want to avoid...............
  7. by   FTell001
    Lets see now...
    1. 8 patients..1/2 of whom are heading south r/t to bp either up.....or DOWN...
    Chest pains? call the M.D. ..wait till he feels like calling back...call the M.D. once again....wait once again...Pt still complaining....
    Meanwhile....another pt. with spiked temp.....call M.D....wait for him to return call....etc. etc. etc.
    Another patient..isolation...gown, glove, mask up each time you enter the room...
    Check with doctors once again..see if they have returned your call...
    Labs up.....call M.D. with abnormal labs.....wait for return call...
    ..get call....new orders...hang fluids that have been changed..check to see if lab has arrived to get blood draws...
    Pt. back from surgery..do freq. vitals...check docs again r/t to pt with chest pains..also pt with spiked temps....
    Run to other patients to make sure they are breathing still...
    Oh..where the heck is that patients breakfast tray?...call dietary...
    Write more orders on chestpain pt...(doc called!)..monitor temp spike pt....gown and glove up because the isolation pt. wants something for pain. Go assess pt's pain location, intensity..remove gown and gloves....go get pain med...tell secretary to hold that phone call......get pain med..gown and glove up to give med...check chest pain pt, check to see if new meds arrived....go back to isolation pt to check to see if pain alleviated...
    Hang antibiotics....dang..IV infilterated.....run for the IV start caddy, back to that room.......veins rolling, flat or unable to find...
    and on and on and on and on..
    Oh...dang...its time to write all this down?..oh......yeah..CHARTING!, I&O's...chart checks...(checking wristwatch......clock OUT when?????) back to paper work...give report.......continue paperwork..pick up loose ends...
    Did I mention..pt teaching......couseling family members.....hospital inservices?
    ...
    WHATS NOT TO LIKE????????????????
  8. by   fergus51
    Renerian, home health and public health are two completely different areas here. And as we are unionized you can't be made to work 3 or 4 weeks without a day off or crazy on call hours. Most positions here are 35 hours a week and considered full time. Home health is VERY different I know!!!!
  9. by   frankie
    Jen, Frankie here. For me, the worst two things in nursing are:
    1. Vomit
    2. In 30 years, you will make, within about 3-4 dollars an hour, the same hourly wage that a new graduate, who has not passed state boards, and is still in orientation makes. And there is nothing you can do about this, unless you change within the profession.

    frankie
  10. by   Jen in Van.
    Thanks for that guys. I do think the public/community health nurse sounds like I would be best fit for- thanks Fergus.
    Cheers and have a great weekend
    Jen
  11. by   Jay-Jay
    Just finished a weekend working as a visiting community nurse. Snowed ALL DAY Sunday, but since traffic was so light, it wasn't a problem. Saturday night, on the other hand!!! Black ice all the way home, plus traffic, plus idiots in SUV's who though they could speed in conditions like that....

    If you don't like driving, DON'T go in for community nursing. You will spend most of the day behind the wheel of your car. Here in York Region, we sometimes have as many as 14 patients a day, and you will easily put over 100 k. a day on your car.

    Types of patients...very heavy on the palliative. A lot of people who want to die at home. It's very draining sometimes, but when someone passes away peacefully in their own home, and you know that you were largely responsible for them being able to do that, it's a really satisfying feeling.

    We do a LOT of wound care. The first thing you will need to do will be to start taking upgrading courses in wound care skills. You will see awful stuff...fulmigating tumours, gangrene, leg ulcers, lots and lots of butt abcesses (pilionidal cysts, rectal abcesses, childbirth tears.) Last week I admitted a patient with cancer of the mouth, with mets to the outside of the jaw and neck. Large nodules, draining copious amouts of foul, purulent fluid. It's starting to affect his breathing, as well as his eating (he's on liquids only) plus he's got mets to both lungs. Ugly, ugly, ugly. I'm very glad he's decided not to die at home. I think someone's told him what might happen when the Ca. starts to eat into the major blood vessels in that area. We did have a patient awhile back who had several major bleeds at home, yet continued to stay there until she finally passed away. Fortunately, her death was peaceful, and was not from a hemhorrage, as the nurses had feared.

    We do see a lot of patients with IV's in the community, both peripheral and central lines. Most of our nurses are IV certified, and some can insert midlines too. We also see home dialysis patients, teach parents to do breathing treatments on asthmatic kids, do VAC therapy for wounds, high compression bandaging, insulin and diabetic teaching, teach patients to manage catheters drain tubes and ostomy care. In short, we are jacks-of-all trades, and there is ALWAYS something new to learn!

    The downside? We get paid much less than hospital nurses, PLUS we put in a lot of unpaid time doing paperwork and making phone calls. If you've got an 8 hour day on paper, you've probably spent 10 hours on the road, then have paperwork to look forward to when you get home. It can get really, really annoying, and a lot of nurses quit because of it. Needless to say, we are shortstaffed most of the time. Why do this sort of a job when you can make much more money in the hospital, and get paid for your breaks?? (Most days I eat lunch while driving, and on a really insane day, I may not get lunch until late afternoon.)
  12. by   Furball
    Originally posted by fergus51
    Renerian, home health and public health are two completely different areas here. And as we are unionized you can't be made to work 3 or 4 weeks without a day off or crazy on call hours. Most positions here are 35 hours a week and considered full time. Home health is VERY different I know!!!!
    I worked PUBLIC HEALTH in upstate NY and did work weekends and holidays. It must differ according to the area?
  13. by   cpgrn
    I went into nursing seven years ago knowing that I never planned to work nights, weekends or holidays. I never have. First job was an office nurse job for a surgeon - interesting work but since the surgeon was a psycho I only stayed there for three years. The job I have now is in school nursing - very peaceful and you get to work with normal people. No weekends or holidays and summer's off. The downside is the pay is low but the rewards are high. It depends on how much money you need. Good luck!
  14. by   ageless
    The worst thing about nursing is mandatory overtime...just finished a 17 hour shift!

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