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jakay RN 1,603 Views

Joined: Feb 6, '08; Posts: 9 (22% Liked) ; Likes: 2

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  • Mar 16 '11

    Eight years.

    That is how long I’ve been in nursing. Just eight years. I haven’t been on AN in a while. I used to frequent the site a lot to vent with others, and help others with advice. Well, today is a ranting kind of day, so here it goes…

    I hate what nursing is becoming. It is become overrun with elite folks who have forgotten what it’s like to just get through your shift. It’s being taken over by money hungry CEOs that are finding neat little ways to package “customer service” with healthcare. Our intelligence is being insulted here! What exactly do I mean by this? Well, what professional do you know gets “scripts” to regurgitate at patients? Why is it that we are not trusted to do our job or say the right thing?

    I understand that healthcare is indeed a business. It has to be. If it weren’t, we’d all be working for free. I got that. I do my job. I put my all into my shift. I advocate for my patients. I’ve gone above and beyond…all without recognition.

    But, I’m deeply saddened…Now I’m being told that isn’t good enough. All I see for the future of healthcare is walking into a patient’s room at the end of my shift saying, “My name is______, if you felt I gave excellent care call 888-tell-them, and rate me a 10.” Heaven forbid you score less than 10 three times…

    Eight years ago, I felt so proud in my whites on graduation day. I felt professional, neat, knowledgeable, and respected. Now, I feel burned up, and abused. For now, I stay in nursing…patients still smile, and thank me at the end of my shift. They cannot detect how I feel under the surface.

    But, I am seriously considering leaving healthcare altogether.

  • Jan 29 '11

    I once noticed a Dentist's name in the phone book, Dr.Payne!
    And one time I was driving on rt. 80 and this obvious urologist had this on his license plate: UCME2P!

  • Jan 29 '11

    Next door to my dentists office, there is a urologist there by the name of Dr. Cockburn.

  • Jan 29 '11

    I have been a nurse for 9yrs and I have been known to diagnosis PE (pulmonary embolisms) with out a d-dimmer, or a CTA. I had a pt once who also was all of a sudden scaired and not just your tipical "Scared". It was more like panic attack . Well he was just fine for the last 4 days i was taking carre of him, he was 21 y/o and was addmitted for a ankle fx, s/p external fixator. Well getting back to the story he was fine the days I took care of him just as long as he had his percocet q4hrs for the pain and yes I think his type of fx is probably the most painful from my experience. I was a new nurse and I was also scared of the was he was acting and I call the MD, told my nurse in charge and so fourth. By the time the ortho md consulted medicine it was too late my pt coded and died. i will always remember THAT LOOK on his face. So from then on if anyone all of a sudden changed from calm and collective and started to panic I would do everything STAT or from my jugdement call a code.
    I could tell 80 Percent of the time if the pt had a PE just by taking off his o2 and if the o2 dropps quickly (for example 100percent wth o2 and 30 sec later 85 percent also you can see the HR go from 90 one min to 125-150the next min. Pts with PE can be fine and also be on the floor but iff they are anxious just use your best judgement. if your not sure make sure you report you findings to your charge nurse and always document who you spoke to and so fourth to cover yourself. All pts in the hospital who dont move well should be on antiq, and like my 21y/old age doesnt matter. PE's are the number one cause of death of pts in the hospital and could be prevented most of the time.

  • Jan 29 '11

    She does know. i had a similar situation with a young man in his thirties. He was on our Med/Surg unit and had severe pancreatitis, history of heavy drinking. He was engaged to be married and also was from Croatia or somewhere around there. Very nice man. I was working my 7a - 7p shift and he called me into his room in a panic. He wasn't sure why, but was very anxious. I sat with him, but soon enough his breathing became distressed. His pO2 was low and other vs not so hot. I had the resident up to see him and we ended up coding him. Right before he went out he begged me not to let him die. He looked right into my eyes and grasped my hand. I told him we wouldn't let him die. He was intubated and sent to ICU. The next day I asked his attending how he was doing and he told me he died. I had to leave the nurses station. I felt horrible and at fault for some reason. His attending said his liver was so far gone from drinking there was no way he could have made it. I remembered his name for the longest time, but now I forget. I'll never forget his face and what he said though. I will never forget him.

  • Jan 29 '11

    Many of us learn valuable lessons from our patients. I was fortunate to learn one very early in my career that has stayed with me for 35 years. I have long ago forgotten her name, but her face and her circumstances are embedded in my brain and have dictated the way I have treated many other patients. I am now a teacher, and I use this as a lesson to my students every year – it is that important.

    I was working the 3-11pm shift at a small community hospital. We received a transfer to our Med-Surg floor from the Intensive Care Unit. It was a 42 year old woman who had had a heart attack. In those days, she was expected to stay on our unit for about two weeks before being sent home. She was so sweet, and I was amazed that someone so young could have had such a bad heart attack! I was half her age but she was still young in my eyes! And she was upset that she could not even see her two young children. Oh heavens no, we could not allow children in a hospital in those days! We even had restricted visiting hour for adults. She asked me to set some pictures of her son and daughter on her nightstand as I was admitting her to our unit.

    Every evening during her bedtime routine, we would talk about our kids. I had one daughter and could not imagine not seeing her every day. But my patient was getting stronger and was able to walk around our unit every now and then as ordered by her doctor. We both knew it wouldn’t be long before she would be home with her little ones again.

    After about a week on our unit, I was making my evening rounds, getting everyone settled in, and she asked me to sit with her for a while. I sat down and held her hand and she told me she was scared. She didn’t know why, she just felt scared and thought she might not see her kids again. I tried to assure her that her progress so far had been fantastic and she was right on track. But she held on tight to my hand and kept talking about her little ones.

    I realized it was 10:30, almost time for end of shift. I told her I had to finish up some charting and give my report and that I would come back to her room when I clocked out. She thanked me and I went about my business. Where does the time go? Before I knew it, it was time to go home and I left with all of my friends. It wasn’t until I had gotten home that I realized I had forgotten to make good on my promise. That’s OK, I thought, I will apologize tomorrow and spend extra time with her at that time.

    The next afternoon I was listening to report and her name wasn’t mentioned. I asked where she was – had she gone home early? To my shock, I was told that she had died at midnight the evening before. She was scared and wanted company and I let her down. She didn’t know why and neither did I, but she was about to die and I wasn’t there. I also learned later that sometimes people feel that “scared for no real reason” feeling just before they are going to die. I struggled for a long time. If I had stayed and been in her room, could I have called a code and would she be home with her kids right now? I would never know.

    What I DO know is this: I have never ignored a patient request since that night. Who knows what is going on in their minds? Scared, pain, terror, loneliness? It doesn’t matter to me. If they need me, I am there. She made me a better nurse and she doesn’t even know it.

  • May 7 '10

    Quote from franemtnurse
    <table id=incredimaintable cellspacing=0 cellpadding=2 width="100%" border=0><tbody><tr><td id=increditextregion style="cursor: auto; font-family: arial" width="100%">one dark night outside a small town in minnesota, a fire started inside the local chemical plant and in a blink it exploded into massive flames.

    the alarm went out to all the fire departments from miles around. when the volunteer fire fighters appeared on the scene, the chemical company president rushed to the fire chief and said, "all of our secret formulas are in the vault in the center of the plant. they must be saved and i will give $50,000 to the fire department that brings them out intact."

    but the roaring flames held the firefighters off. soon more fire departments had to be called in as the situation became desperate. as the firemen arrived, the president shouted out that the offer was now $100,000 to the fire department who could bring out the company's secret files.

    from the distance, a lone siren was heard as another fire truck came into sight. it was the nearby norwegian rural township volunteer fire company composed mainly of norwegians over the age of 65. to everyone's amazement, the little run-down fire engine, operated by these norwegian's passed all the newer sleekengines parked outside the plant.....and drove straight into the middle of the inferno.

    outside the other firemen watched as the norwegian old timers jumped off and began to fight the fire with a performance and effort never seen before.within a short time, the norsk old timers had extinguished the fire and saved the secret formulas. the grateful chemical company president joyfully announced that for such a superhuman feat he was upping the reward to $200,000, and walked over to personally thank each of the brave, though elderly, norsk fire fighters.

    the local tv news reporters rushed in after capturing the event on film asking, "what are you going to do with all that money?"

    vell," said ole larsen, the 70-year-old fire chief, "da furst thing ve gonna do is fix da brakes on dat foc*ing truck.


  • Apr 26 '10

    You KNOW you're a nurse when:

    - you ask a post-op pt if they've pooped or peed yet, and if they say yes, you get really excited.
    - you watch shows like ER and Grey's Anatomy, and cringe when the doctors are at the bedside drawing STAT labs and calling codes. Does this ever really happen?

  • Apr 26 '10

    I was in the shopping center parking lot when an Hispanic family was walking with their young daughter, who fell down and hurt her knees. Automatically, I approached them, examined her knees, saw the skin was intact, spoke in Spanish (not my language of origin) and suggested that they apply ice to her knees for 10 minutes, alternating with 10 minutes without it until she went to sleep for the night. Then in hindsight, I said that she could do with an ice cream, too, to get her to stop crying hysterically.

    They smiled, and said they would do all that and monitor her gait, and see a physician if there was a problem with that, as I also suggested.

    The friends with whom I was there, said, "Don't you ever turn it off?" I replied that after 50 years of being a nurse, even though I've been retired for at least 3 years, I don't know how to stop.

  • Apr 26 '10

    Wonderful post! I am a naive white RN...born and raised in Iowa, lived the past 40 years in Michigan. Just worked homecare in Detroit. I worked with a wonderful nurse who is black...we buddied the 50 clients in my territory. It never occured to me that some of the clients might want to know in advance that the "other nurse" who would come to visit was black...never offered up that piece of trivia. Some of the "redneck michigan militia" postured about the race thing but never caused a problem. My colleague and I did chuckle occasionally about the clients who called and refused the white nurse when they discovered that they could have a "sister" lookin out for them. In my book, a nurse is a nurse as long as you have the heart, have the knowledge, have the skill, and your patients can understand you when you talk to them.

  • Apr 26 '10

    Wow very well said to all my fellow nursing sistas!!

    I too can relate in many different ways to all that was said. I am black as well and a decendent of Carribean parents and I can attest to the different treatment noted from my other peers of a different hue to be received much more cordially when it was very apparent that the knowledge of that indivdual was not there.

    While wearing the designated color uniform for RN's for that particuliar hospital I have also been asked by fellow nurses if I was a tech or some other NON nursing staff. I get to the point where I laugh it off and let my actions do the talking....

    I have an attractive youthful face so when an MD walks out of a room of a patient in the ICU wanting to know "Who's patient X's" is nurse whlie I am standing right in front of him or in the room with him and I reply it is me--I see the stunned look on their face when they are not sure how to receive me.

    I have also seen their anxiety rise when they quickly realize they are not dealing with the "Average nurse" as I quickly update him/her of what has taken place that shift and previous shifts and what medical recommendations are needed for that individual to pull through for the evening...they walk away dismayed but usually in agreement with me.

    I have encountered the "she thinks she knows it all nurse" who has been going around teaching staff incorrect infromation and she being glorified and I have gently let her know with proof and citing and showing resources that this info is incorrect and is a detriment to the patient--then being deemed as the "overly aggresive one" which is clearly not the case.

    I have been promoted several times at various hospitals advancing the clinical ladder .I have worked with nurses who had a higher position than me but not the education credentials I have feel threaten by me once I advanced the ladder and would make snide remarks or try to convince other team members that "I am attempting to take over the facility" or "I think I am going to be the next CEO"

    Because I advanced so quickly in one unit I was told my another coordinator of another unit that it was told to her in MANY forms and instances that there was a plan to set me up for failure because I was so much of a go getter and out shining my other white collegues.

    I have spoken at National conferences and was well received from other nursese, MD's from other states and ethnicities and hospitals at conference but when i returned to my own hospital bringing them the gold from my national presentation--very little accolade noted.

    I could go on and on...but I do know this...I can remember the days when presenting lectures in front of the CEO of the hospital and the medical director and Chief Nursing Officer and the amazement in their eyes as they saw me out 42 ICU RN"s the only African-American RN to go beyond the call and engage that facility with the National Institue of Health.

    I can recall that I was an advocate for my Asian, Hispanic or any other foreign nurses who were afraid to Advance the Clinical ladder because the fear they had of being ridculed because as they explained "my english is not too good".

    Innately I am a motivator and while I was co chair and chair of these Advancing committees I made sure I was their voice and would speak for them so they would receive the 5%raise as they were accepted and advanced the clinical ladderr. That was so gratifying...I could relate to their pain as they told me their stories having foreign parents myself.

    I can remember the days when the beligerent Cardiacthoracic Surgeon who everyone was afraid to deal with and would specifically ask to speak to me to resolve a matter--and I was not even a coordinator then!!! But he saw past my color and saw my skill and even asked me if I would consider being one of his personal nurses. I declined.

    I can remember when I decided to resign from one facility because how the nurses were making it so difficult and they considered me such a threat and thought I was overly involved in quality improvement projects or policy proceudre projects--When I told one of the sweetest general surgeons that I was leaving he personally gave me his home phone number and said to me I am giving this to you because you can use me as a recommendation for when you go to MEDICAL SCHOOL.. !!

    I explained to him I had NOooooooooooooo intentions in ever doing that...He explained to me I can see how you jumped hurdles at this facility and how you have triumphed here...Your picture is on the walll...We need nurses like you to become MD's because you truly care and know what you are doing.... I like to call that Health care Reform in and of itself LOL!!!

    When I combine all of the hardships I have endured because of someones perception of me due to my exterior but then when I sit down and internalize all the good and the catalyst I have been for those who have had NO voice --I say to myself God is good and HE has given me grace to prevail and will continue to do so!!!

    So DON"T EVER let race or what those around you determine how far you can advance in the future. RAther say Lord help me to change my own perception of myself and give me strenghth to go as far as you want me to go....

    Don't just reach for the stars--go for the moon because you can always inspire to take others there with you!!!

    BTW I am an RN with BSN in the south!!!!! Without God I wouldn't of made it!!!! Believe that!!

  • Apr 26 '10

    It was like I was a needle cap placed among a sea of cotton balls. It just Would I ever connect with nurses that had the same background as me? Is it even possible? Where is my version of florence nightingale? Perhaps I should get connected and join:

    Association of black nurses
    Black nurses society
    Black nurses r us
    Nurses who are black inc.
    You're black? And a nurse? Join us!

    Maybe this was my ticket to finally feel like I 'm among the ranks of professional individuals, to belong even if it is dangerously close to the sidelines. As a nursing student, I always felt like I had to prove myself to my patients and my instructors. Even though I come from the fabulous city of chicago, the majority of black nurses work for the county and therefore I was never in contact with them to be inspired, to feel safe, to find a reason to keep going.

    But I did.

    It was arduous, daunting, and exciting all at the same time, but I steered clear of anything that was a dead giveaway for an excuse. Since I come from a society that is seeping with self-doubt and a "crabs in a bucket" mentality, it wasn't a pretty journey; that's what made it perfect. It feels so rewarding to have little girls run up to me and say that they want to be a nurse now that they've seen someone actually come through the woodwork. It's like I give them hope for something that typically seems so unattainable. They have yet to experience true hardships and challenges, but hopefully I 've shown them that it's all worth it in the end. They just need the passion to overcome any obstacle.

    But you know what I realized?

    It's not about being black and therefore feeling so accomplished about the day's work. It's about being a human being and a nurse. It's about recognizing your own potential before you begin concentrating on the color of your skin. We don't need...

    Association of black nurses
    Black nurses society
    Black nurses r us
    Nurses who are black inc.
    You're black? And a nurse? Join us!

    ...To tell us that we're important. We can only find confidence within ourselves. We have already made great strides towards becoming whatever we want to be and our future looks even brighter.

    Maybe it's best for us all to figuratively remove the rods and cones from our eyes and become colorblind. A white nurse is a black nurse is a hispanic nurse is a filipino nurse is a chinese nurse is an indian nurse. I plan on doing so just to show people how beneficial it is.

    Yes, we may be outnumbered as nurses when it comes to statistics, but I choose to think of us as diamonds; rare and hard to come by!

    Be human. Be beautiful. But most of all, be...lieve.

    Nursethis21, bsn, rn
    Uic alumna

  • Oct 7 '08

    My absolute favorite was when I was a new grad working in a NY city nursing home. One of the residents was a very tall, distinguished gentleman. He was a soft spoken, polite fellow who proclaimed to have made millions in the "railroad". At that time , sex shops would promote themselves by slipping ads resembling hundred dollar bills under the wipers of parked cars. John had pass privileges and would collect his "millions every time he took a walk. It was really cute, if you did something nice for him he would thank you and tip you 100 bucks (or a topless woman with an 800 number if you didn't have dementia). Anyway one extremely hectic shift , I get paged to the front lobby. When I got off the elevator there is John , hat in hands wringing it away, looking like he's about to drop his cane and sprint. Behind him was an irate man shouting in Spanish along with 3 nothing left to the imagination, no doubt about it prostitutes. When I asked what was going on, the man immediately identified himself as the cab driver who wanted his 50 bucks fare. John had apparently wandered pretty far, found himself some pretty girls and told him about his railroad millions. They must of seen dollar signs thinking of all they could take this old man for. They hailed a taxi, which of course John being a gentleman offered to pay for and went to John's "house" aka nursing home. The cab driver starting yelling at the hookers that they were going to pay him and they in turn were demanding that I pay them time lost and the fare. Isn't it funny no part of nursing school prepares you for angry hookers asking you to pay up. One of them said I was responsible because he had millions and I control his money. When reasoning got me no place,I called upstairs and had the CNA bring down John's money. I handed some hundred dollar ladies to the cab driver and some to the prostitutes. I told them there was John's money and to get out before I called the police. They did leave, calling me and poor John all kinds of names. I took his arm, the man was close to 90 years old and shaking like leaf, to help him on the elevator. On ride up , he thanked me and told me once I got him home he would pay me for my kindness. Some days you just have to laugh or you'll go crazy.

  • Oct 7 '08

    Hi all, I just discovered this site and signed up....I am really looking forward to chatting! Anyways, I think the funniest story I have is from my first job on a medical floor 27 years ago.

    A very obese woman came in with a cheif complaint of abdominal pain. Access was a problem, so while still in the ER, several attempts were made before finally getting a central line into her.

    When she arrived to the floor, she commented to me and the intern....
    "I came in here with the worst pain in my it is gone, I'll tell ya.....that accupuncture REALLY works!!!":icon_roll

  • Oct 7 '08

    Years ago, I was working LTC and had to administer a rectal suppository for a very confused LOL, at 3am. She resisted me, but I tried to explain what I was doing and persisted. Finally she relaxed and allowed me to insert the supp, saying, "You men are all the same!". Extra funny since I'm obviously a woman!

    Another time, I needed to do a dressing change on this same LOL, again in the middle of the night. I turned on the minimum of lights so as to disturb her as little as possible. She woke up and got a look at me, and said "You look tired. You look like the walking dead". I replied that I WAS tired, but certainly not dead. She then scooted way over in the bed, up against the side rails, and said "You better lay down here with me for awhile. You're going to scare people, walking around looking like that".

    This same lady hit the doc with her cane on another occasion, and told him that he didn't have the sense God gave a bean seed. She also routinely expressed disgust in the dining room over the other residents' lack of manners, then would shout "SHUT UP!", when someone would point out that that wasn't very nice. I loved that lady - I attended her funeral when she died. Her kids told hilarious stories about her, and said she had been a wonderful mother. Apparently she'd always had that "tell it like it is" attitude.