NURSING...the to die for career...hmm - page 6
Teachers, Police, Firefighters, Military, Government City/State and Nursing. What do they all have in common? Early Retirement Benefits! Whoopsies...all except for nursing. Whatsup with THAT....... Read More
Quote from SC_RNDude^Yes!!
I'm new to nursing, that doesn't mean I'm green. I've been in the working world for 20+ years. This includes time in a union, time in management, experience as a state gov't employee, and time running my own business. I bet my experience gives me a much broader perspective on things then many nurses.
I'm game though. I'll consider a union. Let me tell you about my current job first. I work at a major metropolitan hospital, which is also a Level I trauma center. I haven't been there a year yet, but already get 4 1/2 weeks PTO a year. I get paid for committee meetings, OT, training, etc.. I wish I was paid more (who doesn't), but I live in an area that many people desire to live in. However, it still affords me a pretty good quality of life,...just bought a new home, a new car a year ago, get to go on vacations, etc. My benefits are pretty good, including health insurance at a very fair price. I'm often asked to work extra shifts, but have never been forced too and have never felt threatened if I say no. In fact, in 10 months have probably worked 3 or 4. Staffing is good most of the time, at times good be better. My schedule is as requested probably 98% of the time, get reimbursed for education, get to be on committees that have a say in how our unit is run.
So, now it's your turn. What would a union, especially a national union, do for me?
I agree that the diverse pool of nurses is good. You are the one who wants to get rid of the experienced ones, based on a previous post of yours.
There are a lot of us who come from various backgrounds as well as have been exposed to the many settings that you speak of SC_RN Dude, in and out of nursing. Well said!
What OP needs to understand, is that there are many that are in a great position in their careers, and the "issues" are not privy to nursing, and have equal ways of being resolved as well as support.
I have a job that has the same package that the SC_RN has described. I also get pension after two years, as well as retirement, legal/malpractice protection through a legal fund, healthcare, dental, life insurance, work/life balance, education, even assistance on finding a home (although I already have a mortgage)...the list goes on-committee, CEUs, education, strong clinical ladder and making sure EVERYONE is up to date on education; theory and skills, including doctors. Very collaborative approach that works 95% of the time.
I also worked at non-profit and was a 1099'er. I'm saving sooo much money returning to the ranks of w2 status. I understand that orgs who offer extensive packages, work/life and clinical ladder wages (ok wages the wages jump after the 1st-2nd year and beyond) have the picking because many people want to work for places that offer such packages, and it makes it competitive. Should these benefits be offered across the board for people, absolutely. Should unions be involved? That's relative....factor in costs of living in certain areas, economic climate as well. This stuff is not so black and white.
Mar 13, '13 by lkulmannLady free...you are sooo anti union. You would fit nicely in my union because its OPTIONAL...you just check the NO box. Unions should be optional. I choose unity and protection, you don't. I want to create an early retirement pension IN ADDITION to all of the typical benefits you mention. BTW, the benefits you mention are typical standard benefits. I made just under $50.00/hr NOT including shift diff and non union. The California union nurses are making $55-85.00/hr about $100,000.00/yr fully protected and 5:1 pt nurse ratio. We must demand better. If the CEO of the hospital is making 2 million/yr they could afford to take much better care of the nurses. These corporations are making money tons of money and tossing us a bone in exchange..
If you read my OP, I am PRO-union.
I also have all those benefits WITHOUT a union that you speak of...pretty good for "typical" benefits IMHO...
CA's rates are like that because of the COLA.
Where I live, I will make that money within 5-10 years of my career, which works, because of the clinical ladder model.
How can nurses make that amount when the COLA doesn't match up??? How can you propose this without taking into account poorer states???
Like I stated before, it not as black and white as it seems...it's a nice theory to have a union, however, unions have changed directions due to the fact that corporations have moved overseas in the 80s due to deregulation, and saw that as a loophole to get away from the union's accountability. Wages have been stagnant for almost a generation as a result of this, including nurses. That is across the board and the reality.
Corporations are the largest employers of nurses, as well as other individuals. If the wages cannot be supported where EVERYONE is not affected negatively, then I'm all for it. I have seen a hospital close after making negotiations with their nurses after they were in strike. The corp did not have any money. There was a physicans organization and the physicians and nurses union that helped run the hospital for a little over a year before they ran out of money.
Thankfully, they were able to get jobs at local hospitals, including a nearby hospital where the nurses and doctors unions were employed. This example I'm giving you, not many areas have that luxury...they may be the ONLY hospital in the area.
If you are about protecting the patients, you have to consider the financial stability and hospital economics, medicare reimbursements, costs, etc...consider what factors can go towards improvement of nursing employees, and go from there.
I'm coming from a systems theory perspective.
When you have systems in place, you can look at a system as a whole, decide what factors that are leading to WHY a particular system is not working, and go from there-Quality Improvement guideline method, SBAR (military origin) method, critical pathway models are used methodically as well for solutions.
There are many EBP studies that address such factors, and can be used at facilities. The ones I work at have such practices in place, and continue to use these methods collaboratively by nurses. Nurses have a seat at the table far up into senior management.
Again, one of my posts state how there are plenty of facilities that have less of these issues, are PRO Nursing, and there are the ones in between or have non-existent policies. The focus of unions are to go to those facilities. For the ones that are doing well, like the one that nurses like me, SC and others are employed by, what can an optional union do for me that the labor board, my local nurses associations (I have a few that I am a part of) can do that they are doing already??? WHY would I want that option if my wages are comfortable, my work-life balance is taking into account and a supportive environment is supported????
I am still wondering if you have researched EBP, attended you local chapters of nursing orgs if you gave them in your area, found a way to propose what systems need improving.
This is why I am for improvements on a political level. If things are so DIRE, then a precedent needs to be set, away from interest groups and corps....just my IMHO.
Mar 14, '13 by lkulmannLady free...as I said, you would check the NO box in my 'union' you are in a good spot it seems. Not all facilities are as wonderful as yours is, that's why there are unions. The dept of labor will protect you if the issue is discrimination related only without a union contract. We are at will employees otherwise. As far as evidence based practice, that is the standard on paper, but it doesn't necessarily mean its being practiced.Systems are slow to change as you said and these monster corporations are all about the bottom line, money. In my heart and soul I believe that nurses and management should be able to work in sync for patient centered care. Somewhere along the way, money and power have become the focus of priorities. The nurse and the patients are source of money. There is a very fine line that has been crossed in healthcare. Money is more important than lives. Nurses need to put nursing on the map, unite and band together nationally.
Mar 15, '13 by LadyFree28, BSN, RNLady free...as I said, you would check the NO box in my 'union' you are in a good spot it seems. Not all facilities are as wonderful as yours is, that's why there are unions.
The dept of labor will protect you if the issue is discrimination related only without a union contract. We are at will employees otherwise.
As far as evidence based practice, that is the standard on paper, but it doesn't necessarily mean its being practiced.
If it is not being practiced in your area, it can be introduced more so without union...or on a political level...IMHO...
Systems are slow to change as you said and these monster corporations are all about the bottom line, money. In my heart and soul I believe that nurses and management should be able to work in sync for patient centered care. Somewhere along the way, money and power have become the focus of priorities. The nurse and the patients are source of money. There is a very fine line that has been crossed in healthcare. Money is more important than lives. Nurses need to put nursing on the map, unite and band together nationally.
Hmmm...UNITE and band together?? What in your perspective makes nurses so "fractional"???
I think that with our profession being as diverse as it is nationally and on AN, there is a place for everybody, and people have their niche, as well as nurses who do band together and unite. The state I am in has an very active and healthy legislative body, as well as organizations that come together and are specified for their specialty. They unite together on a national level, have local and national conferences to discuss improvements, provide support, etc. They are using EBP to make sure that they are not churing out too many new grads that can't find work, making sure school nurses are not being cut, as well as hiring qulaitfied individuals as school nurses, working to establish staffing ratios,etc...patient/family centered care (minus the "customer service corporate model") is discussed at conferences, local chapters, making sure nurses are at the forefront to design and drive this model, rather than the current model we have in place. These EBPs that are a reality are being discussed at a national level.
Nursing is not going away, nursing is here to stay. I just find that last part of your comment perplexing, given that there are CNOs and nursing administrators in hospitals facilties, and in home care agencies.
I also find that my question was not answered...what assessments have you or are you willing to DO to make this successful?? Not articles of unions merging with nurses, or the NNU website either. What is your comprehensive plan to make this work, without having a situation that I stated in my last post occur???
If you are in an area where nurses are so fractured and not have a voice, have you reached out to them??? Does your area have local chapters of nursing associations or specialty nursing assoications? If they are not assiting in helping promote local working issues, then maybe its time for you to get involved like that, or reach out to them.
Quote from lkulmannYour enthusiasm is admirable. I know you have been burned recently for whistle blowing and I am sorry for that.....but a union will not get theWell this is my logic. First, many public first responders and healthcare workers have that early retirement pension. Nursing fits nicely into that category. It doesn't mean you retire at that age, you collect at retirement age. The second reason and more important IMO, is getting the old dead wood management staff out and the senior nurses out after training the new grad nurses. Keeps it moving growing evolving... science changes.There are new grad that need jobs leaving posts everywhere on this site. They can't get hired BC they have no experience...that's laughable. Old staff out new staff in.dead wood management staff out and the senior nurses out after training the new grad nurses.
Just remember that if you change the system successfully you will probably be theold dead woodsenior nurses out after training the new grad nurses.
I wish you the best
Quote from LadyFree28I am from Massachusetts.....I agree. I am curious about your thoughts on why MA is a disaster.Well, healthcare, for the past 15 years has been political BS and money games when they decided to be cornered by the corporate market by being a 24-hour business...they saw the potential to make BILLIONS by making the bottom line, and they have been successful at it.
As far as 'typical' abuses, there are laws for that. In the past three years, I have been reimbursed from previous employers for not reimbursing for OT, missed lunches, etc. WITHOUT a union. For jobs I had over five years ago. Don't like your working conditions? Call the labor board and make a formal complaint; if they are many who want make a formal complaint, there's strength in numbers. The history of the union moving helped create such boards to have people investigate and if proven, will reimburse. At my former job, there was a complaint, and they came out within two weeks. The other nuances, such as bathroom breaks and lunch are relative, because I find a way to get one. I also worked at places where either you found a way, communicated and trade off with another nurse, or a clinical resource nurse took over. The onus is on the nurse, because in theory we should be adept at planning care, even for ourselves.
Yes, times are changing, HOWEVER, this can be done at a political level. Laws can and always been in place. It is always a CHOICE to have a voice.
For me, I do not want to be in the position like Massachusetts That is a recipe for disaster. I think it would strangle my advocacy, and that is a NO DEAL for ME.
Quote from lkulmannYou can stand your ground....but having a union will NOT eliminate the Labor department from you life.Wouldn't it be nice to NOT have to call the Labor Dept for missed OT, missed lunches and etc...have you EVER actually changed any policies at the political level? Typical abuses should even be able to be used in the same sentence, but there are many. I stand my ground... nurses need to expect and demand better
Nurses came a long way before 2008 when the economy crashed and the hospitals lobbied and bombarded the air ways with tales of the dire nursing shortage that were akin to the Zombie apocalypse. The profession was in dire straights (yeah right).
When I graduated nursing school, with a college degree. I was making only $4.25, $2.35 above minimal wage. After orientation...I was given a $.50 raise/hr. Nights was $.35 differential. Evenings$.25. I was the RN for 35 surgical patients with an LPN and 2 aids. God bless that LPN for I fear there would have been more that a few patients with a higher mortality rate...
Nurses fought and clawed for better treatment, respect and pay. We were college educated individuals who were worthy better pay and working conditions. There was no longer the free labor from the hospital run nursing schools. We were worth more than that and the patient deserved better.
Our wishes were granted.
Then things changed......nursing enrollment was at an all time high. The news got out that nurses made a ton of money...you picked you job, location, named your price. I knew then there was going to be a problem.
How do you decrease the price of a valuable rare commodity? You make more of it so that it becomes a surplus and looses it's value. Is that why OPEC will only drill so much oil at a time? To control the market and price? Nurse "leaders" propagated this from their ivory towers to keep the little guy where they belong.
Who do you think the union leaders are?
I am not really a conspiracy theorist but I do believe that this has been created by a few to protect the elite. Kind of like the economy.
Im was a nurse who stood up and demanded better and I am watching it fall.
Life is one large circle and will repeat itself.
Quote from tewdlesI did as well.....then illness took it all away. I feel your pain.My dh and I also lived frugally, worked hard, and saved for our retirement.
About 10 years ago my dh had a medically urgent need, got surgery and a nice hospital stay with lots of after care that was ALL denied by our health insurance company.
We survived this without bankrupcy BECAUSE we were frugal and lived within our means...of course, we no longer have a savings or retirement fund and are now in our early 60's and late 50's.
Who knows what the future holds for each of us...
Quote from lkulmannHow's that working for them? The unemployment rate for nurses/new grads is 47% and California is broke housing is out of control and the bureaucracy of the machine itself is crippling except for those in the machine.Lady free...you are sooo anti union. You would fit nicely in my union because its OPTIONAL...you just check the NO box. Unions should be optional. I choose unity and protection, you don't. I want to create an early retirement pension IN ADDITION to all of the typical benefits you mention. BTW, the benefits you mention are typical standard benefits. I made just under $50.00/hr NOT including shift diff and non union. The California union nurses are making $55-85.00/hr about $100,000.00/yr fully protected and 5:1 pt nurse ratio. We must demand better. If the CEO of the hospital is making 2 million/yr they could afford to take much better care of the nurses. These corporations are making money tons of money and tossing us a bone in exchange..
I really do wish you the best.
Mar 15, '13 by lkulmannEsme12 ...you are a wealth of knowledge BUT I wonder if you're misunderstanding some of the goals of my 'optional' union for nurses and healthcare workers. The two main goal or objectives I would like to see for the nursing profession is an early retirement pension, similar to police and firefighters etc... and protection. The early pension would allow the new nurses fresh from school with their newly updated education to get right to work. The senior nurses that have put in their 20-25yrs can move on or stay on if they choose. By having an early pension in place, there would be plenty of jobs for new grads decreasing the unemployment rate. Inherently within that plan there wood be zero accumulation of deadwood management and where ever else deadwood goes to die. At age 50, there are a ton of other nursing jobs you can do or not if you choose. As far as 'my' union regarding protection and unity, the DOL is your best friend and advocate. Non union workers have less protection by the DOL than the at will employee. With a union in place the 'typical abuses' of no lunch or paid OT or ANY labor issues are gone. The saying that 'nurses eat their young' will be ancient history.
Mar 15, '13 by lkulmannLet me define deadwood. Deadwood is staff in positions no longer suited for the job description. For example, when there are Nurse Managers managing nursing staff, they must be in touch with the clinical aspect of care. Hospitals that have Magnet Status are actually advocates of this idea as well as other visions of outstanding hospital level nursing care. But, just because its on paper and a vision or goal doesnt mean it's actually a fact. That's a different thread...lol. There is deadwood in many professions. I just gave one example.