I have to ask this in the Canadian forum, because the situation for our southern neighbors is a bit different when it comes to taking advantage of employees.
I work in homecare as a side job. I recently approached my boss about attending a conference in our city this year. The conference is free and relates to the medication that one of my clients receives (Prolastin). Being as it isn't a common drug, and I'm in homecare with limited learning opportunities, I figured it was a great opportunity to actually get some knowledge around the illness (alpha 1 antitrypsin deficiency, looks like COPD).
The answer was yes... but it would be an "unpaid learning opportunity". Um, what?
As if I want to spend my days off going learn about my client's disease process and treatment options. I did that for 4 years in university. I'm done working for free.
But were I to actually express those opinions to my employer, I would get the whole "don't you value learning", "being a nurse is all about continuing competency" etc. etc. But to me, it just reads like the COMPANY doesn't value my learning. I don't think for a second that my boss, or his boss, attends any "unpaid learning opportunities" because they value learning so much.
I don't know where I'm going with this rant. It just seems like employee education in healthcare is a joke. Companies take advantage of nurses wanting to get the knowledge to provide the best possible care, so they make them pay for it out of pocket. Emergency nurses paying for their own ACLS and trauma credentials...IF they can even get a spot in the course. It doesn't make any sense to me. Why WOULDN'T healthcare agencies want their staff credentialed out the wazoo?
In the oil and gas sector, NO WAY would employees be paying for their own training. No way. My relatives in that sector have to turn down training opportunities in order to get their work done half the time, they are so frequent.
Okay I'm done ranting.
Edit: It's a private company, with national coverage - so very large, and very profitable. Maybe this WOULD be appropriate for the general nursing forum...
Last edit by flyingchange on Apr 12, '13