I am a new grad looking for a bit of advice from the experienced nurses out there. I have been working as a med/surg RN for just a little over 6 months now. The hospital I work at is a small community hospital that actually has a pretty decent reputation. Since I began, however, I've been really surprised by how disorganized the hospital is run. The stress of the nurses is high, the acuities of the patients are high- many of our med/surg patients are total care and really could be step-down patients somewhere else. We are, seriously, nearly always working short staffed. The ancillary staff (including RNs, I feel) are overworked and under appreciated. Our ratio is 1 nurse to 7 patients. Many are dissatisfied and express their desire to leave.
I am currently working on a unit with no charge nurse, no assistant nurse manager, no secretary. All of the other units have a clinical nurse specialist or educator and we do not have one of those either. We do have a manager but she is also the manager of another unit in the hospital and is physically present on the unit for maybe 10 minutes in the morning and then leaves to manage the other unit. I've been getting really frustrated at work... I feel as if we have no resources! Sometimes we aren't even stocked with supplies I need and I have to walk to another unit to get them. When I have a question, there is rarely another nurse I can go to. The days are really difficult, some days are great, but most days I don't love it. Not because I don't love what I do, but because I feel like our employer is not respecting us/giving us what we need to do our job. I don't think we should always feel like we are drowning- and we do! I also know this does not create an environment that contributes to patient safety.
I guess I want to know, is this normal?! Does anyone have any advice?? Or am I just being a huge baby? I vent to my nursing school
friends I graduated with and they say they have issues with staffing (which is just a facet of healthcare), but they say it should not at all be this disorganized. I am hoping to leave after I hit my 1 year.