Are we in danger of being forced out of healthcare all together? - page 3

I have read many descriptions of situations where the nursing staff was being asked, required, demanded, to work harder without any additional compensation. I have read many comments by nurses where... Read More

  1. by   ainz
    True--there are many very capable nurses from other countries who would jump at the chance to practice in the USA.
  2. by   Todd SPN
    I just did a quick scope of this tread, and I get a lot more out of it than a slap at foreign nurses. We have problems in this profession that are many and complicated. Keep in mind, if you come here to practice these same problems will affect you. BTW, I hope you realize your dream.
    Last edit by Todd SPN on Aug 19, '03
  3. by   -jt
    <Sadly, many nurses are unable to do basic math calculations to determine drug dosages,>

    And Im one of the many who cant do those basic math calculations. Why is this so sad? Its a disability Ive learned to live with & compensate for. My brother has it much worse - his dyslexia prevents him from doing words - but hes a genius with numbers. I have to rely on calculators and computerized IV pumps. I let the machines figure it all out, and then have a colleague who is more number-literate than I to double check it for me. So what. I agree with you theres a problem if a nurse doesnt know the rationale for what she is doing, but are you also saying that not being able to calculate mathematics without help makes us bad nurses?
  4. by   Tiki_Torch
    This thread is full of food for thought! I just wish I had some answers for us all!!!

    Re: foreign nurses: I have absolutely no problem working with foreign nurses because I've done so many times and thoroughly enjoyed them all. What does worry me though is the probability that our "government" would plan to solve our nursing shortage by recruiting foreign nurses. My main problem with that is this: Who the heck is going to care for the patients in foreign lands when the majority of their nurses make a mass exodus for the good ole USA? For crying out loud, each country should be able to supply the majority of nurses needed for their own citizens.

    Aaarrrrgggghhh!

    An unsurmountable problem? I have been out of nursing for 3 years now and have been dusting off my resume and boning up on my nursing literature in hopes of returning to the field this Fall. I want to do more to help our profession advance but feel so ineffective! I once heard that nurses make up the largest percentage of workers in the US and that if we could all truly get together all at once, our effects could be truly awesome. How can we do this when most of us are exhausted from working ourselves to the bone, caring for children and parents, and falling into bed at the end of the day without an ounce of energy left for aiding our profession's health? I can't see us making a "million nurse march on Washington" when we all have to be back at work in 8 hours...

    What is the answer to our problems?

    Setting ourselves apart: I understand that all RNs being BSNs would be a start to putting us on a "professional" level, but schooling takes even more time and we need help now (while we work on our BSNs). I also agree that if we looked like nurses in our units that it would most likely set us apart... make us more special to people we interact with. The last time I worked on a floor we all wore the same uniform... Nurse Manager, RNs, LPNs, Nursing Assistants, Unit Secretary, Dietary Assistants and Environmental Services staff. For heaven's sake, the only folks that wore something to make them look "special" were the administrators, doctors, social workers, and maintenance crew!

    I'll shut up before I get my blood pressure up to high.

    If nothing else, it's great to know there are other people in this world who care about our profession. Many thanks to everyone who has posted to this thread.:kiss
  5. by   KarafromPhilly
    Originally posted by -jt
    <Sadly, many nurses are unable to do basic math calculations to determine drug dosages,>

    And Im one of the many who cant do those basic math calculations. Why is this so sad? Its a disability Ive learned to live with & compensate for. My brother has it much worse - his dyslexia prevents him from doing words - but hes a genius with numbers. I have to rely on calculators and computerized IV pumps. I let the machines figure it all out, and then have a colleague who is more number-literate than I to double check it for me. So what. I agree with you theres a problem if a nurse doesnt know the rationale for what she is doing, but are you also saying that not being able to calculate mathematics without help makes us bad nurses?
    I think she's saying that the inability to manage simple arithmetic and basic algebra without help would tend to indicate grave intellectual limitations. I don't think she's necessarily talking about a person who knows how to figure out the dose, drip rate, etc. and has someone else look at it also. Double checking calculations is a good habit, after all.
    I personally worked with a GN who truly scared me. We were looking over the patient's MAR and she had a Q12 IVPB that had been given at one PM. When I asked this GN when we would hang the next dose, she COUNTED ON HER FINGERS and said, "Seven o'clock?" I KID YOU NOT. She has failed the NCLEX twice yet somehow managed to graduate from a well-regarded ADN program. Let's all hope she never passes.
  6. by   ainz
    -jt,

    You mentioned the salary difference in a new ADN at $56K and a staff physician at $800K.

    The physician is viewed as one that generates revenue, or money, for the hospital. As such, the physician is highly valued and seen as a money-maker, not a money-spender; or in more appropriate terms, the physician is a revenue generator and not a mere consumer of resources and the nurse is seen as a line-item expense, hourly, blue collar worker that is easily replaced.

    I am not agreeing with nor defending this attitude. I am simply stating this is the REALITY that nurses must learn how to deal with effectively.

    We have to show our financial contribution to the hospital if we are ever going to change the way people in charge of hospitals view us. It is absolutely useless to become criticize, argue, become defensive, and waste our energy on non-productive activities. We have to begin engaging in activities that will produce results for the LONG-TERM. In my opinion, unions do not do this for us. They may help for the short term but this does not address the basic issues that keep nursing where it is today.

    Let us also not forget that nursing has made some significant gains over the years, so, things can change but we must go about is intelligently and effectively, not filled with emotion and spinning our wheels doing things that will never help.

    I have many specific suggestions of how to begin this process but not many people seem interested in reading them nor actually beginning to do them in their hospitals etc. That is sad. In my hospital, we have eliminated the need for agency nurses and actually have a waiting list of RNs that want to come to work here. I will be happy to share with anyone how this was achieved.
  7. by   RNIAM
    ainz
    What are you ideas? how can they work. I am all for it if I know what to do.
  8. by   Hellllllo Nurse
    ainz, would love to hear your ideas.

    I've been a nurse for ten years and don't make anywhere near 56k, though!
  9. by   jnette
    Originally posted by Hellllllo Nurse
    ainz, would love to hear your ideas.

    I've been a nurse for ten years and don't make anywhere near 56k, though!
    Me too. Count me in. Itemize, and make them "workable" in various situations... gotta remember the dialysis clinics out there, too, where some of us work... owned by megawhoppers who see nothing BUT the bottom line ! So, yes, I'd love to hear your thoughts and ideas, especially if they're applicable in more areas than one.

    And yes, I too, can't even IMAGINE 56K.... don't forget the nurses(yes, RNs) out there who still are barely breaking 20K ! :stone
  10. by   jnette
    more thoughts on this.. (sorry!)

    While I can agree with most of what's been said above... about BSN as entry level for any true profession, (and yes, Im an ADN), most definately about professional appearance and demeanor... I can't help but wonder.. would it make any difference in the long run?
    If nurses are still considered a line item expence and not generating revenue, would this then not be a further detriment?

    What if all nurses were to go for their BSN, and receive all the "specailized training" mentioned above... who would truly be interested in employing these nurses who would then also expect and require far greater compensation... which they don't even want to pay us what we're worth NOW? Would they not then be even more apt to hire those less educated, or seek to "dumb down" the requirements and skill levels of nurses in order to manage the "bottom line"? If we were so highly educated, they could afford us even less !

    I agree that there are areas where we could stand improvement, but can't help but wonder if it would come back to haunt us, or worse...BITE us in the end ! In THEIR eyes, we would not have changed.., we would continue to be viewed as "just nurses"... only now more costly ones. "THEY" need to work on changing THEIR perception of the nurse as well ! And until they do, I think there is little that we can do... no matter how much more we educate ourselves... we'll end up overeducating ourselves for little reward.. perhaps even out of a "job".. as long as to them it is just that.. a "job".

    Just food for thought.
  11. by   RN2007
    Todd, that was very rude of you to say, "Listen Stupid", regardless of what her board Username was.

    I think it is sad how so terribly many nurses are known to "eat their young" and basicly treat each other like crap., and I have heard this over and over and over on this board and from nurses themselves! You would think that all nurses could rise above this so that maybe one day nursing would really be viewed by the public as a profession. Sad but true that "professionals" are generally thought to be those individuals who have earned at least a graduate degree and/or are a doctor, lawyer, architect, etc. Stereotypes are hard to break but it is up to each nurse to do their part to help break it.

    FYI, when I first came to this board about a year ago or so, I was really planning on becoming a nurse. However, because of the interaction and conversation with so many on this board and really peeking into this field by reading loads of posts, I decided against it for many reasons, although I still plan on working in a hospital in the future. I have already started back in college to get a Degree in Health Information Management along with a specialized diploma in medical coding and am happy that I did this because I am pretty sure I will have job security due to the 3 different certifications that I plan on getting as well. The field I am going into is very interesting and not nearly as back biting as nursing, and as I gain more job experience my income will not be capped like that in nursing.

    So, I am very thankful for taking the time I have reading all these posts over the past year because it certainly caused me not to make a dreadful career mistake, however I think that nursing is very admirable career but not for me, and not for anyone who cannot present themselves as kind hearted and very intelligient caregivers, not sarcastic, eat their young types, of which I have run into several of these who cared for me while I was in the hospital for different surgeries and procedures. And I have given many wanna be nurses from other websites this website address so that they can find out more about nursing before jumping in, because at least they would have quality informed consent. I do hope that nursing will one day get the respect that it deserves and/or that many of you feel like you are not getting, however in the mean time, why don't we ALL just concentrate on becoming nicer people, more caring and compassionate employees and people, and stop all the back biting and learn how to treat everyone who we come into contact with?
    Best Wishes Always, April
  12. by   RN2007
    Todd, I do not like sending PM back and forth to people I do not know, because I like to keep out in full view for others to see. According to your PM that yo sent me, you did not see where you did anything wrong by addressing another poster as, "Listen Stupid", although you saw fit to erase this comment from that post? Regardless of your logic, what I said I meant and to erase it would mean that I did not mean it. You were simply rude by addressing another person that way, Period. Now, if you understand that, well go on your way, because I have no beef with you, I was just stating the obvious. And if you continue to address this issue you are wasting your time. You made the comment, I did not. I like to think before I talk, write, etc.
  13. by   sjoe
    "Todd, that was very rude of you to say, "Listen Stupid", regardless of what her board Username was."

    According to Miss Manners, and Emily Post, it is rude of ANYONE to publicly refer to someone else as rude.

    And a reminder that it is very easy on this BB to completely ignore someone's posts. Simply go to any one of that person's posts, click on "profile" then click on "add...to your ignore list". Viola! You will see no more of that person's posts. Much simpler than trying to convert her/him to your version of "good manners," or "the truth."
    Last edit by sjoe on Aug 19, '03

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