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Joined Jul 6, '10. Posts: 467 (46% Liked) Likes: 731

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  • Oct 26

    Quote from Marisette
    So true. My employers have never felt a nursing shortage, but my RN coworkers and I have. Mandatory overtime, limited vacation and time off coverage have been the norm with my employers.

    I predict a change to a shortage once the new generation refuses to put up with the work environment the boomers have tolerated.

    Exactly!!! I am seeing this already. The new generation of nurses do not put up with any shenanigans. They want life/work balance and if they feel that they are just a commodity that gets "used" they are gone.
    I am glad that the baby boomers are in the process of retiring. Don't get me wrong - great nurses - but because they put up with almost everything and anything they also enable administration /nurse managers to not change anything and just continue to short staff and promote work environments that are not that great.

  • Oct 26

    Personally as an "old" Gen-x'er I am always keeping an eye out for a better opportunity. I have the Boomer values of hard work, loyalty and only calling out sick when dead. But I have begun to see how little all that is appreciated by some employers. They want a warm body, that's it. And pay raises are ridiculously low, if at all. I began to open my eyes and see that I, alone, will be the one to take care of me. My employer has does not have my back. I have to. Praise for a job well-done is not forthcoming. I have to pat myself on the back for doing a good job and being a nurse who strives for excellence.

    Some employers actually forbid, in writing, discussing pay and compensation among coworkers. I see that as a way to keep their staff "under control" and not to rock the boat when they see a brand-spanking-new graduate making a couple dollars less an hour than those with 20, 30 or more years' experience make.

    Forcing nurses who have 30 or more years' experience to go back to school to earn a BSN or MSN makes them want to quit. After all, who in their right mind, would take on 10s of thousands of dollars of debt to advance their education, yet still make no more than the ADN working by his or her side---especially when retirement is looming? I think it's a clever plan to get rid of outspoken seasoned nurses, and replace them all with what (they hope) are malleable new graduates.

    Ah, but "they" did not count on the new generation being smarter than that, and seeing that it pays for them to job-hop or go for that NP or CRNA ASAP cause that is where the money and opportunity for advancement are. So hospitals are increasingly and chronically poorly-staffed with a continuing flow of new grads who have zero intention of sticking around, putting up the with the insanity floor nursing has become. The oldies are gone, and patients suffer. This is where I see the "shortage" exists, not of sheer volume of nurses, but the right skills and experience mix to keep patients safe and units running smoothly.

    It's quite a dilemma, really. What you get is a unit with nurses with less than 2 years' experience, running the show, not knowing WHAT they do not KNOW.

    So, I am adopting the Millennial attitude, "do what is best for me, because no one else will". I am no longer settling, staying for years upon years in one place, only to be worked to the bone for little reward and zero appreciation-----that is no longer on my radar. Seeing myself into retirement, happy, content and reasonably well-compensated, is. I am no longer afraid to move on if things are unsatisfactory. An unhappy, burned-out nurse helps no one: not her patients, not management, and certainly, not herself. I can't continue to fill others' cups when they are in need, if mine is empty. I also have to consider my wellbeing, happiness and attitude directly affect my family and if I am unhappy, it isn't good for the spouse, kids or grandkids.

    Anyhow the point of that little diatribe is, while there may or not be a shortage as most perceive it, I have to do what is right for me in the end. You see, it's never too late for an old Boomer or Gen-X'er to learn from the Millennials, after all.

  • Oct 26

    Quote from SmilingBluEyes
    Some employers actually forbid, in writing, discussing pay and compensation among coworkers.
    Which is an illegal policy and should be politely challenged, when possible. Although in a right-to-work state, that's not going to matter much, they'll just find another reason to fire you if you stir the pot too much.

    Seems to me that the strongest pressures for higher wages are unionization and strong state labor laws. Don't forget to research candidates and vote on Nov. 8, everyone!

  • Oct 26

    Meh. I am in a large city in the midwest. There are definitely MANY more new grad jobs out there then when I graduated at the end of the recession. It's really not the 100 applications for one spot atmosphere I job hunted in. It's still conservative flyover country but my city isn't exactly Grand Forks, ND either.

    As has been mentioned previously, nurse retention is the bigger issue. We have spots because we can't keep our new grads beyond a year or two. This poses its own set of problems but I feel like the general advice that you will need to move to BF, Nowhere in order to get a new grad job that isn't nights on the worst MS unit in the city is a bit outdated for the large chunks of the country in between the coasts.

  • Oct 12

    We genuinely worry and care about our patients that it often consumes us. When a patient codes or expires, we are crushed. I once had a patient who got stuck at least 15 times by various staff members, including physicians, to get IV access. The patient took those sticks like a champ, but I still went home and boo-hooed because I hated to see him go through that. We hurt when our patients hurt.
    To me, this is the root cause of your issues.

    Personally, I do not worry about my patients. I assess them and intervene as I'm able. After that, I accept that things will run their course and I do not fret about it.

    When a patient dies, I generally remains dispassionately detached from the occurrence. I have had a couple of experiences with children that have made me sad and for which I've shed some tears but even then, I keep it at an arm's length... and I am never 'crushed' because I don't let myself care too much about it... because... this is my *job* and my job is to provide nursing care, not to become emotionally connected to what's happening. Sometimes I do begin to care more than I should and I actively nip it in the bud.

    And I certainly do not hurt when my patients hurt, even when we must poke them time and again, or when urology struggles to place a catheter, or difficult intubations, or chest tube insertions, or all the other invasive and painful things that we do to patients in order to treat them.

    I always recognize my role and that is of the professional nurse who is being paid to provide a service, one which I take very seriously and strive to perform at the highest level. My heart is my own and is reserved for my personal life.

    I would encourage you to seek counseling in an effort to learn to separate yourself from your work.

    Nursing is not a calling nor a mission; nursing is a job... and one which will chew you up if you get too close to it.

    Professional detachment...

  • Nov 9 '15

    Here's how it went down when I was a suicidal patient exactly one year ago.

    I had a plan, the only question in my mind was which way to go---the pills or the gun. I called my psychiatrist only because I was scared, and of course he told me to go to the ER. When I got there they were waiting for me, and they put me in the safe room with my husband by my side. I was asked to get into a gown but they didn't object to my keeping my pants on underneath, although I was patted down, wanded, and my things gone through before hubby was allowed to hold them for me. The attending psychiatrist came in to see me, and made the decision to admit me to the psychiatric facility in the next town over. In the meantime there was a security guard at the nurses station to watch me and the staff checked in frequently as well.

    After about six hours in the safe room, secure transport arrived and I was taken to the facility. I was NOT restrained, although it felt like it because I was in the back of what had once been a police cruiser, with the cage and the doors that don't unlock from the inside. That was the worst part of the experience, but the transport team was very nice and talked me down when I nearly panicked (I am really claustrophobic). Basically, I was treated with dignity throughout the entire day, and I think knowing that the staff wasn't judging me or trying to make me feel like crap kept me calm. I was in a very dark place at that time and if someone had put restraints on me or locked me in a cold room, I'd probably have bolted the instant I had a chance, and gone home and committed suicide.

    I hope everything turned out all right for the patient in the OP. The road to recovery from an episode like that is a long one, and sometimes people don't make it back.

  • Nov 9 '15

    Quote from studentnicu
    I am only a student but this goes against anything I have learned or participated in on the wards. The restraint sounds extremely unethical and unecessary. I could never see this being done in any of the wards I have worked on simply because she was merely asking for help/support and was not threatening by any means. I would assume the locked door is enough (maybe even too much) of a restraint. I do understand that she needs to be assessed after confessing her suicidal thoughts before leaving, but is there a more practical way it could have been done?

    May I ask why all of her clothes were removed?
    I know, this is ridiculous. The person is already feeling crappy enough to want to kill themselves and they are subjected to very degrading treatment IMO. Oh, but they might harm themselves is the logic used. No, it's just another way to degrade someone who is already feeling like crap because they might have the notion to kill themselves. I fail to see the reason why this is a crime in the first place. The lawmakers ought to spend more time worrying about THEIR conduct instead of passing asinine laws regarding the topic.

    Also, if a person wants to kill themselves they're going to do it regardless of any inpatient treatment. People like this are put on pills that are supposed to make you happy because you're so stoned from them. Psychiatric medication is powerful stuff. And it's even more interesting that these types of drugs are what people usually do wind up ODing on and actually catching the bus.

  • Oct 27 '15

    I'm not a holistic clinician. I think that stuff has it's place, but I'm a cheeseburger guy so I couldn't care less about vitamins, crystals, feathers, and such.

    Regarding science, there's quite a bit of evidence to suggest the PHQ-9 should be implemented in primary care visits. You can research the epidemiology of MDD to understand why. Since we don't really know what causes depression it's going to be hard to prevent it. Thereby screening for it for earlier treatment probably works better than trying to develop some preventive guidelines.

    I chuckled a bit when I saw the nature of your assignment. This is one of the things that makes me a ashamed of nursing. We're assigning papers on the social determinants of health, a topic more suited to sociologists, while our colleagues in medicine are studying physiology, neuroscience, pharmacology, and psychopathology in effort to treat depression.

  • Sep 1 '15

    Age is how you feel and your overall health. I am much older as well! However, I should have my RN some time next year. But, I also have other credentials under my belt so lots to lean on there.

    Anyone concerned about nursing school due to their age just needs to consider their overall health and stamina. I, for one, feel that I cannot endure the strenuous physical requirements that I have already gone through as an LPN, BUT REALIZE that LPNs (in my state) have less opportunities - usually end up in long term care and the workload is horrible. I had a couple of slight injuries but overall, the 12-hour shifts on my feet constantly with no breaks are what concerned me.

    Now, having said that.....think of it this way. Nursing is very DIVERSE! Have you ever done a nursing job search and seen all the opportunities available to you? And if you get a BSN or beyond, there is no stopping you regarding opportunities! But even at the RN level, you could find jobs that are less strenuous than direct patient care - quality management positions, etc.

    I hope it works out for you!

  • Sep 1 '15

    If you believe you're too old to do it, then you are too old. What I answer everyone when they ask me about RN school is go get a CNA job (hospitals where I live train for free) to see what its really all about. And, keep that job or ED Tech job all through school to give yourself documented healthcare work experiencing.

    No do-overs, no regrets. Things work out the way they are supposed to work out, it can not be any other way. I'm an old fart and cause of death isn't going to be CHF in a SNF.

  • Aug 24 '15

    Quote from VANurse2010
    Reconsider your overtures of friendliness.

    I will continue as I have been, and if that bothers you, you can find other threads/topics to respond to.

  • Aug 18 '15

    My FNP program is a mental health program unto itself....

  • Jun 7 '15

    A discreet "Is your employer hiring?" or "I'm a nurse" to a customer wearing scrubs might turn into a welcome advantage to working at Starbuck's. Total strangers can be helpful in the job search. If a regular customer, they will get to know you and just might be amenable to helping you out. Just be careful.

  • Aug 28 '11

    This, the Disney model and the odious Quint Studer are the reason I cry myself to sleep every night, curled up in fetal position with my thumb in my mouth.

    You baby nurses, read the writing on the wall. You thought you went to school to help people? To heal people? Nope, you are 40K in nursing school debt to be customer service reps. I am waiting for the day administration decides it'd really boost those Press-Ganey scores to wake up patients with a [redacted] in the morning.

    Ya'll can read that as you wish. Me, I'm going to crack open a cold one and watch Bob's Burgers.

  • Jun 20 '11

    In May 2011 conressmen from Wisconsin and Colorado have declared the nursing shortage an EMERGENCY!
    I am going to the town hall meeting with Sensenbrenner next week. I will let you know how that goes.