An astounding lack of diversity in nursing - page 10

I pasted my comment from another thread (above) into its own thread because I'm interested in why y'all think there is such a lack of diversity in nursing and what you think the solutions should be.... Read More

  1. by   NurseCherlove
    Quote from blueheaven
    On the other hand I have faced reverse racism from my black african-american co-workers. Our mix on my unit is such that I am a minority and don't think that it wasn't obvious when I came to work here. I use the term black as not everyone who is black is from africa. One of the nurses is from Haiti and she has not treated the way the others have. I work in a large downtown city hospital.
    Sounds like my first nursing job....I was harassed on a daily basis from my black co-workers so much that I ended up becoming physically ill and really thought about leaving nursing altogether. Thank goodness I'm in a much better place now where the staff treat each other like people..black and white alike.
  2. by   mojo27
    Maybe b/c I am in a school in NYC, our class is very well represented by international students: Ghana, Nigeria, Philipines, China, Latinas, Afro-Carribeans, Russians. Sadly each group seems to sit in their own little communities with little interaction. We sit in these classes that always preach diversity, but it doesn't seem like this is taken seriously...just some administrators talking points.
    I just hope they can put whatever biases they have aside when it is time to be a professional.
  3. by   pickledpepperRN
    Quote from ZASHAGALKA
    Good idea, won't work. TV has invested far too long in the concept that nurses are background material. So much so, that if nurses were ever portrayed accurately, it wouldn't feel 'real' to the average viewer.

    How could network TV pass the 'believability' test to show nurses actually doing nursing things when they have passed on the perception for so long that the doctors do those things?

    Give me a show where doctors actually spend less than 10 minutes at the bedside while nurses spend 24 hrs and do the bulk of the work, and I'll give you show not nearly as interesting as the 20 shows that depict various interns and residents 'paying their dues'.

    I agree with you. But in REALITY, nurses don't nurse on TV; doctors do.

    I'm a real nurse, I don't play one on TV. That's a good thing, because, in the REAL world, I'm not just some 'set prop'.

    ~faith,
    Timothy.
    The right writing team, director(s), RN advisors, and actors could make a terrific show.
    No one has done it YET.
  4. by   subee
    Quote from spacenurse
    The right writing team, director(s), RN advisors, and actors could make a terrific show.
    No one has done it YET.
    Actually, Spacenurse, they have. Oddly enough, it was called.....The Nurses.
    It ran from 1962 through 1964 at 9 p.m. on CBS. I watched it every week.
  5. by   SharonH, RN
    Quote from spacenurse
    The right writing team, director(s), RN advisors, and actors could make a terrific show.
    No one has done it YET.


    Spacenurse, they don't want to. Check out THIS TOPIC on the Center for Nursing Advocacy's website.
  6. by   NRSKarenRN
    current production in works: possible new nurse show/pilot

    philadelphia general (pgh) closed in mid 70's. hey, maybe i should send producer info on one of my retired staff nurses (50 yrs experience) who trained + worked there...could be taped for then/now authenticity!
    Last edit by NRSKarenRN on Mar 15, '07
  7. by   ZASHAGALKA
    Quote from spacenurse
    The right writing team, director(s), RN advisors, and actors could make a terrific show.
    No one has done it YET.
    The biggest career fear that most actors have is being typecast, thereby limiting the roles they could play. Unfortunately, nursing in the media was typecast long ago.

    There will never be a 'right team' to portray nurses until nurses themselves stop taking the 'walk on' roles of extras in the credit we deserve for our day to day, 'real' jobs.

    Let me point out though, that this is a diversion from this thread and if we go too far down this road, we need to start a new thread.

    ~faith,
    Timothy.
  8. by   bethin
    Quote from TheCommuter
    I apolgize for sounding rude or offensive, but here's my blunt point of view.

    It is tremendously silly for a laboring woman to refuse care from a male L&D nurse when she will turn around and willingly accept care from a male obstetrician. Most obstetricians are males. Actually, the male doctor gets to see more 'action' than the male nurse (episiotomy cuts, vaginal rugae, everything, etc).
    I don't agree with how GardenDove stated that she wouldn't allow a male nurse in delivery. But, as a victim of assault (by a male) I do not go to a male gynecologist. I am just not comfortable. Yesterday, when I went to the dr (female GI) her male intern walked in to do my initial exam. Nothing probative, just checking lung sounds, pushing on belly, etc. Within mins I was in a full blown anxiety attack. I feel guilty for feeling this way and I'm working on my phobia. But please don't lump me in with silly.
  9. by   TennNurse
    OK, I will have to admit that I have not yet read all of the 100+ posts on this topic, so please accept my apology if I repeat something. But I find myself sufficiently steamed after just getting to page 2 that I just have to throw my 2 cents in here.

    First, TrudyRN, all I can say is amen, sister. I am a white female who was absolutely not recruited by anyone to go to nursing school. I was not offered (or even granted when I applied for it) financial assistance so that I might eat and purchase gas while I pursued my degree. Not one person sought me out and painted a bright and pretty picture of nursing so that I, Christen, might abandon previously held dreams and knock down the door to grace this profession with my sterling presence. It never once occurred to me to think less of the profession for this lack of an engraved invitation.

    It seems to me that nursing is populated by people who wanted to go to nursing school and were smart enough to pass both their classes and state boards. And if someone wants to describe this educational journey as being demanding and discriminating in the sense that it requires book smarts, street smarts, people smarts, and good common sense, then thank God for small favors. Do you want YOUR life in the hands of a nurse who is lacking even one of the qualities on this very short list?

    Just to pull an example out of my hinderparts, I would venture that very similar statistics could be applied to oh, say, CPAs. And just as I am very sure that there is someone out there in the wilds of beyond who would find a way to be appalled and offended by that glaring oversight, I am also positive that that very same open-minded individual would choose to have his or her taxes prepared by someone who a) knows how to do them and b) is experienced enough in this art to not bring upon your sorry head the wrath of the IRS. Will you, sensitive soul, entrust your life or livelihood to any caring person whom you happen upon, simply because you feel that the privilege of taking care of you is not evenly distributed? If so, may I be the first to salute your bravery and faith in your fellow man. Me, I want someone who I know knows what the h*ll they're doing.

    No one forces or forcibly bans anyone from attending and passing nursing school. If you want to go and your grades qualify you, off you go. If you are smart, have an affinity for the work and the patients, and can drop an NG tube, place a Foley, start an IV, and know the right questions to ask your SOB pt with a hx of CHF, then you pass. God knows this profession and the preparation for it are complicated enough, please don't add to it!

    This entire profession is in a very sorry state at the moment, and suggesting that we beggars are also (racist, discriminatory) choosers is just insulting. For God's sake, pick a problem we actually HAVE, and party on, brother*.

    *(Not intended to imply any racial or ethnic preference, lack thereof, or slur, or attempted familiarity with unrelated familial groups.)
  10. by   ZASHAGALKA
    Quote from TennNurse
    OK, I will have to admit that I have not yet read all of the 100+ posts on this topic, so please accept my apology if I repeat something. But I find myself sufficiently steamed after just getting to page 2 that I just have to throw my 2 cents in here.

    First, TrudyRN, all I can say is amen, sister. I am a white female who was absolutely not recruited by anyone to go to nursing school. I was not offered (or even granted when I applied for it) financial assistance so that I might eat and purchase gas while I pursued my degree. Not one person sought me out and painted a bright and pretty picture of nursing so that I, Christen, might abandon previously held dreams and knock down the door to grace this profession with my sterling presence. It never once occurred to me to think less of the profession for this lack of an engraved invitation.

    It seems to me that nursing is populated by people who wanted to go to nursing school and were smart enough to pass both their classes and state boards. And if someone wants to describe this educational journey as being demanding and discriminating in the sense that it requires book smarts, street smarts, people smarts, and good common sense, then thank God for small favors. Do you want YOUR life in the hands of a nurse who is lacking even one of the qualities on this very short list?

    Just to pull an example out of my hinderparts, I would venture that very similar statistics could be applied to oh, say, CPAs. And just as I am very sure that there is someone out there in the wilds of beyond who would find a way to be appalled and offended by that glaring oversight, I am also positive that that very same open-minded individual would choose to have his or her taxes prepared by someone who a) knows how to do them and b) is experienced enough in this art to not bring upon your sorry head the wrath of the IRS. Will you, sensitive soul, entrust your life or livelihood to any caring person whom you happen upon, simply because you feel that the privilege of taking care of you is not evenly distributed? If so, may I be the first to salute your bravery and faith in your fellow man. Me, I want someone who I know knows what the h*ll they're doing.

    No one forces or forcibly bans anyone from attending and passing nursing school. If you want to go and your grades qualify you, off you go. If you are smart, have an affinity for the work and the patients, and can drop an NG tube, place a Foley, start an IV, and know the right questions to ask your SOB pt with a hx of CHF, then you pass. God knows this profession and the preparation for it are complicated enough, please don't add to it!

    This entire profession is in a very sorry state at the moment, and suggesting that we beggars are also (racist, discriminatory) choosers is just insulting. For God's sake, pick a problem we actually HAVE, and party on, brother*.

    *(Not intended to imply any racial or ethnic preference, lack thereof, or slur, or attempted familiarity with unrelated familial groups.)
    Oh I totally agree, in the sense that there are not more women CEOs and politicians simply because few women aspire to such positions . . .After all, 51% of our population are women, therefore, it cannot be an issue of 'minority status'. It has to be a relative lack of ambition to pursue such jobs. Right?

    Good thing there are plenty of men that aspire to such positions, or there'd be a difficult time recruiting for them. . . It's an equally good thing that those men didn't need engraved invitations or financial assistance to desire such jobs.

    I realize that there is a touch of sarcasm here, but I'm not trying to offend you; I'm trying to make a point. I completely understand your perspective; I'm trying to point out that it might, maybe, might just not be a universal one.

    Indeed, the demographics of nursing, just like the 'glass ceiling' for women, indicate that there must indeed BE different perspectives at play. The logical question is, why? Asking THAT question does not point a finger at you.

    For example, it's not the current, or indeed, any past President's FAULT that they belong to an exclusive club of white men. That being said, JUST because it's not their fault does not mean that pondering why that is the case should be a forbidden, or even insulting, topic. Really, doesn't THAT particular demographic, in itself, raise the question, why? Don't you think?

    At the VERY least, considering their two frontrunners, the Democrat party ought to presently be pondering NOT just why, but potential solutions to overcome any such perceived barriers.

    Maybe nursing should, too.

    ~faith,
    Timothy.
    Last edit by ZASHAGALKA on Mar 16, '07
  11. by   pickledpepperRN
    Because this thread is so long I'm repeating that most of the LPNs in my state are minority women and men.
    They have proven they are able and willing to do nursing work.
    I think this is where we can recruit registered nurses by providing scholarships and stipends.

    How about a GI bill for veterans who want to go to nursing school?
    Just like how my father and many of your fathers or grandfathers were educated. The GI Bill of Rights created the educated American middle class.

    Now provide the funds and nursing school slots and they will come!

    PS: Sharon, the article was right on!
    Suebee: I wish I hadn't missed that show.
  12. by   NRSKarenRN
    ca programs i've posted include carrer mobility from lpn to rn: $$ for california health profession careers

    pa has loan foregiveness programs:
    nursing loan forgiveness for healthier futures
    loan forgiveness program for state veterans homes nurses
    also special programs for nursing students

    these monies securred to alleviate nursing shortage within state...all help pa residents to become nurses and many move up next level too.
    Last edit by NRSKarenRN on Mar 16, '07
  13. by   LuvofNursing
    Quote from ZASHAGALKA
    http://allnurses.com/forums/f34/afri...ners-4734.html

    I pasted my comment from another thread (above) into its own thread because I'm interested in why y'all think there is such a lack of diversity in nursing and what you think the solutions should be.

    This is a touchy subject, I know, so I only ask that you keep your comments respectful and constructive:



    Older thread I came across but wanted to comment on this:

    First, some demographics: in the U.S. as of 2000, RNs are comprised of:

    http://bhpr.hrsa.gov/healthworkforce...tion.htm#3.3.2

    White Female: 82%
    non-Hispanic African American Female: 4.9%
    Asian Female: 3.5%
    Hispanic Female: 2%
    Native American Female: 0.7%
    Mixed/Other race Female: 1.2%
    White Male: 4.7%
    All other Male: 1.0%

    3 points:

    1. The key statistic here is that only ONE PERCENT of nurses are non-white males. If I mistake a minority male as being somebody OTHER than a nurse, sure, there might be some built-in cultural bias there, but it's just as likely that it's because of the rarity of such nurses in the first place.

    Now, you might argue that the rarity is the real problem and I would agree. A profession that under-represents minorities by a factor of 3 and males by a factor of 9 needs to ask itself one potent question: why?

    2. I think the OP has had a difficult time over the years finding fellow minority male NPs because those nurses would be a fraction of the ONE PERCENT total number of non-white male nurses. A small pool to swim in, to be sure.

    3. As demographics change, nursing is simply going to be forced to address this issue of an astounding lack of diversity in its ranks. As our nation drops below 50% "white" in the next decade or two, it will simply become unfeasible to continue to recruit 86.6% of RNs (male and female combined) from the shrinking pool of whites in this nation. Think real hard about that last statistic: something is amiss in how we recruit nurses. Something's broken and needs to be fixed.

    (disclaimer: it's not my intent to be biased against LVN/LPNs, however, I got my stats from government links that only tabulated RNs.)

    ~faith,
    Timothy.

    I think many of the points you make, Timothy, are valid and legit, but I do have a problem with #1. You mention that you are using statistics as a way to determine the position that someone holds at a hospital.
    In order to dispel all the myths and stereotypes that come along with nursing, each of us needs to give each person the respect of at least learning about what role they play in the hospital (or clinic, medical office, etc), whether it be the janitor or the doctor.
    For reasons such as this, many males, ethnicities, and otherwise 'non-traditional' individuals are less likely to pursue a career in which they don't feel as though they are given the respect that they deserve. I am happily in a class where 25% of our students are male and approximately 75% are ethnicities other than caucasian. These slight diversions from the trend of 80% white, female nurses is what helps our patients feel comfortable.
    Regardless of ethnicity, sex, age, etc, nursing is about the care you take with your patients and your work ethic. 'Being a nurse' is more than just giving meds and assessing your patient, but striving to give back to your profession and to make positive changes everyday.

    Luv of Nursing

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