The Political Nurse Speaks - page 3

by VivaLasViejas 5,969 Views | 25 Comments Guide

I have been a political animal all of my life. From the time my grade school held a vigil for Bobby Kennedy and a mock Presidential election in the same year, I've followed the fortunes and follies of our nation's leaders, stayed... Read More


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    Save the "partial birth" abortion rhetoric- I'd like to see those that believe in it find JUST ONE REPUTABLE INSTANCE of it being performed. It is "prolife" propaganda. Most late term abortions are done for WANTED pregnancies. Those that are doomed from the get go. They are delivered early, to allow the parents to grieve for their lost dreams, and have a dignified burial for it. Yes, I am sure that there are some that the mother just couldn't make up her mind, and time got away from her. They don't cut up a baby to do that, either. Many are for genetic problems that were not apparent till later, and the parent knew they could not cope.
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    Having read the article I do not believe it was the Authors intent for this to become a discussion about abortion. I see it as the culture that is present in nursing whether or not we wish to openly admit it. We include and exclude our peers on some unwritten rules from abook that doesnl;t exist. We spend enormous amount of time and energy justifying why one degree is better than the other. Nursing has formed those special clubs most of us hated in high school that were for the "cool girls only". Those clubs with rules of exclusion.

    I believe that we as nurses have a duty to care for our patients in spite of our personal views. I believe in God but I don't believe I should try to convert the atheist while I am on duty. My job is to care for every patient to the best of my ability regardless of their, or my, personal beliefs.

    We are nurses not judges ......pro-life , pro-choice. Religious, atheist. Muslim, Christian, Jew........we care to care for them and their choices as nurses.


    I think we can argee to disagree and be respectfulof each otrhers opinion.
    The author has specifically requested that this not become a discussion about abortion.

    Please stick to the topic or the thread will be closed for review.
    uRNmyway, herring_RN, and VivaLasViejas like this.
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    Many, many years ago in my first year of nursing education in Montreal, Canada our class was instructed to never discuss politics or religion with patients (?or each other). That wasn't hard to do.Ah, what seemingly simpler days those were! The "language police" didn't exist (yes, in Quebec those erstwhile public employees sneak everywhere, to assure that French is spoken in workplaces that employ more than 3 people).Abortion was a word not even whispered.....women accepted their fate as "fallen" when that happened. Men coerced into marriage to "make honest women" of those they'd impregnated, often created marital discord, as well wives did. Nurses only dealt with the mortal illnesses of street abortions.Hospitals chose their goals and objectives, often placing "Patient Care" last, if they were connected to universities. Currently Research and Education come first still, at those facilities. Thankfully, it never seemed that a choice in that order had to be made by nurses.... We were bystanders then, much less vocal in the '50s about our own beliefs. If a seemingly unnecessary, unpermitted (by the patient, with no information about why it was being done) procedure, like a painful spinal tap for some obscure research project was done, the greater good seemed to demand that it be accomplished without objection. Even sterilization of women following their umpty-umpth delivery occurredunder the guise of that!I hope a new era following President Barack Obama's re-election will herald placing patient care first, without exception. He has declared that mental illness receive the same financial coverage as physical maladies. To that end, sufferers of that nether world of cacophonous voices, appearances only to them of frightening images and terrible urgesmight be discovered earlier than they are now, and horrific mass murders averted through medication and better monitoring compliance taking it. Pharmacies should alert theirphysicians, when patients haven't refilled their prescriptions for psychotropics, as well as anti hypertensives and other life preserving drugs. I'm very leery of programs for drug addiction that foreswear participants taking their prescribed antipsychotic regimens.In the spirit of providing healthcare for everyone regardless of their capability to pay for it, billions of dollars spent today for the treatmentof advanced disease courses will be averted. Preventive strategies and earlier diagnoses will save more billions of dollars. Costs of emergency department care will also be saved, as informing people of effective early treatments for common illnesses, and signs that nurses at Urgent Care clinics can determine, of the need for physicians' care. No longer will financial gain of healthcare providers be a factor in deciding appropriate treatment modalities, as occurs all too frequently today in the USA. Every other civilized country has been providing healthcare through negotiation with providers, for decades before this. Our time to do it has come.If anyone thinks the above means communism has been accomplished, through the provision of Affordable Health Care, then that is their problem. Only financial gougers like extremely profiteering insurance companies, pharmaceutical and prosthetic manufacturers, would have us think that! They would not be content with moderate gains, and brought this advancement upon themselves through unbelievably elevated charges, as have some physicians.This country has been so indoctrinated against anything like Communism, it isn't going to happen in its purest sense here. The only country that now allows such communal living, is Israel where the Kibbutz has been a lifestyle taken up only by its participants' choice, a few people. You won't see a Palestinian in one, as that hasn't been their choice. It has nothing to do with religion.So fear not, and please look closely to be sure that the better good of all is served through private and government subsidized earlier and preventive treatments. No one has to change what they have already.Doctors will still have good incomes (although not as lavish ones), pharmaceutical companies won't be able to claim outrageous prices for their products using the research angle (subsidies through private and public grant funding paid for most of that), and diagnostic imaging equipment that is bought now at enormous costs by all hospitals to compete with each other, will be shared according to the need of the populations they serve. Insurance and prosthetic companies will be able to collect realistic amounts for tjeir products, based closer to their real costs, and not their wish for greater profit margins.We are entering a time of having more concern for each other! That has been wished by most people and feared only by profit mongers. Hopefully the banking industry will follow that lead.
    herring_RN likes this.
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    I am a member of the ANA and I only joined to remain current in their agenda. 90% of nurses are NOT represented by the ANA. Of the 800,000 physicians in America 80% do not belong to the AMA because they do not agree with their political views. The Association of Justice membership isn't all that impressive either.
    To assume that the ANA represents all nurses is absurd and it would serve the ANA to make an effort to find out why membership is so dismal.

    It would be wonderful if nurses who are truly interested in nursing issues would band together and develop an organization that would provide actual representation and promote genuine nursing issues and not just a liberal agenda. Pennsylvania Nurses Association recently send out literature with an article stating that nurses should educate patients on global warming. I found it interesting that the ANA and PNA feel it is appropriate for nurses to promote liberal agenda without regard to the cultural and political values of their patients. It would seem to me that a better use of nursing time would be to focus on their patients and provide the care and teaching within the purview of nursing.


    Quote from VivaLasViejas
    I have been a political animal all of my life. From the time my grade school held a vigil for Bobby Kennedy and a mock Presidential election in the same year, I've followed the fortunes and follies of our nation's leaders, stayed abreast of political trends, and even changed from conservative to liberal and back again.

    However, as I've grown older I have come to the conclusion that politics isn't just about politicians and pie-in-the-sky campaign promises, but something that affects us in our everyday lives at work. Who hasn't heard of the term "office politics"? Every workplace has its individual set of unwritten ground rules; run afoul of it and you risk being ostracized, even terminated in more extreme cases. It's a dog-eat-dog---or perhaps more accurately, nurse-eat-nurse---world out there, and you've got to be tough (and smart) to survive.

    The flip side to this is how politics forms the basis for what we call patient advocacy. Without realizing it, we make political decisions on behalf of those in our care every day when we discuss the merits of "futile care" with the physician and family of a blind, demented 90-year-old man with stage IV decubiti and urosepsis; when we push a recovering surgery patient to walk just a little farther and deep breathe just a couple more times even though she doesn't want to; when we call the doctor to request an order for Ativan not because the patient is driving us crazy, but because he's driving HIMSELF crazy.

    And yes, politics also informs our social consciences and in turn, our voting habits. This is where the public at large, and even nursing leaders, tend to get us wrong: by seeing nurses as a monolith. Politicians, especially those of a left-leaning persuasion, look at us and practically salivate, thinking they can count on us to deliver the votes for social programs, stronger unions, and so-called "reproductive rights".

    I cannot overstate how wrong-headed this view is, not merely because I personally do not support those causes, but because I'm acquainted with many, many nurses and we all think differently, even when we agree on most things. For example, I have a nurse friend who, like me, is pro-life but also is pro-death penalty, while I (in later life) have concluded that the commandment "thou shalt not kill" doesn't make an exception for the State. I also work with a nurse who is about as far from me on the political spectrum as it's possible to be, but who is adamantly anti-abortion and goes so far as to volunteer both time and money to help new mothers who have no support systems or resources to help them take care of their babies.

    It is my hope that as the election of 2012 comes and goes, more political analysts and campaign managers will realize that NO group should be pigeon-holed as a voting bloc, and learn to tailor their messages to reach those who don't conform to their idea of how nurses think. In addition, I would like to see the state and national nursing associations, such as the ANA, open up the "big tent" to include nurses who don't support the proliferation of unions, who vote Republican, and who hold associate's degrees or are LPNs. After all, we are ALL nurses!
    uRNmyway, VivaLasViejas, herring_RN, and 2 others like this.
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    Global Warming is real...
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    Quote from laborer
    Global Warming is real...
    I think you are right, but this is not what nurses should be teaching our patients.
    VivaLasViejas likes this.


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