Nurse Employment

  1. In the State of Texas, despite a current very serious nursing shortage, approximately 15%-20% of the individuals who hold R.N. licensure are unemployed. This statistic comes from the statistical information provided at the web site for The Texas Board of Nurse Examiners. They are not employed in any capactity. This unemployment rate of R..N.'s does not include R.N.'s who hold employment in fields other than in nursing and/or who hold employment as part time R.N.'s. This seems to me to be a very startling and disturbing employment statistic to me. What could be causing the same, especially in the light of a very serious nursing shortage in Texas? I don't want to speculate on the because it appears to me to imply some very serious problems that nurses have with regard to employment issues in Texas and, probably, nationally.

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    Mr. C.V. Compton Shaw, R.N., CLA
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  2. 32 Comments

  3. by   Nancy1
    This statistic is mind-boggling. Are these nurses just burned out and don't want to work? Or have they all won the lottery and don't have to work (sarcastic remark).
    It seems to me that if someone went to the expense of nurses training that the individual would be working on some level. It makes me curious to see if I can find out the numbers for Wisconsin.
    I will be watching this site to see what others have to say. NA
  4. by   oramar
    Originally posted by Nancy1:
    This statistic is mind-boggling. Are these nurses just burned out and don't want to work? Or have they all won the lottery and don't have to work (sarcastic remark).
    It seems to me that if someone went to the expense of nurses training that the individual would be working on some level. It makes me curious to see if I can find out the numbers for Wisconsin.
    I will be watching this site to see what others have to say. NA
    No, I have not hit the lottery. However, after 30 plus years of working as a nurse I have paid off my home, educated my children and do not even have so much as a car payment. I also have a husband who makes nice money and is very happy to have a full time homemaker to come home to every day. The point being that I no longer have to put my physical and mental well being on the line in order to bring home a paycheck. I did register at one point at a Community College to retrain in a field other than nursing but I became ill and had to drop out. I decided to take a year off from any sort of work at all in order to recouperate. I do firmly believe that I would still be employeed at this point in my life had I been working at some less stressful profession. Please, before anyone says anything sarcastic about my being lazy or a quitter remember that I worked as a nurse continously from Sept. of 1967 until Jan. of 2000 and I feel I am entitled to drop out at this point if I can afford to do so. I live in Pa. and know quite a few nurses who are keeping their licenses up but who are currently not employed. There are two reasons for this, one is that like me they can afford not to work and the other being that they have health problems. However, I am feeling better, I live South of Pittsburh, Pa. and if some one has a low stress nusing job they need to fill they could email me at my allnurse address.

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  5. by   justanurse
    oramar, I have always hoped that some day I'd be able to do what you have done. I would have thought so, up until March of this year, but being as that I am now the sole income for my family, I don't see that in my future. Although, I'm proud to have a stay-at-home Dad in our family. I don't think anyone who takes time off is a quitter. Sounds like you've earned it. We all have, just some of us plan better than others. Enjoy your time as you have never been able to do before.
  6. by   PPL
    oramar, I hardly think you're a quitter, with a work history like that! I am just working PRN right now, and am in total control of my schedule. I work only the shift that I want, only the unit that I want, and actually pick my shifts so I can work only with those nurses I trust and know to be team players. Now of course, we live modestly, but I'm taking my time to find something medically related, with a different pace, and I'm not concerned what the pay is, as long as we can meet our bills! I will ALWAYS be a nurse, but hope to continue just PRN, and they won't own me! Don't even feel guilty a tiny bit! Enjoy your life and time off! Oh Happy Day!
  7. by   oramar
    Originally posted by PPL:
    oramar, I hardly think you're a quitter, with a work history like that! I am just working PRN right now, and am in total control of my schedule. I work only the shift that I want, only the unit that I want, and actually pick my shifts so I can work only with those nurses I trust and know to be team players. Now of course, we live modestly, but I'm taking my time to find something medically related, with a different pace, and I'm not concerned what the pay is, as long as we can meet our bills! I will ALWAYS be a nurse, but hope to continue just PRN, and they won't own me! Don't even feel guilty a tiny bit! Enjoy your life and time off! Oh Happy Day!
    Yes, PRN is nice. I have also done agency, float, peds, med surg, ICU, PCU, PAR, ortho, rehab and even a little stint in a nursing home. No OR or ER, well not much anyway. Oh I forgot, I worked a bit on a detox unit and also in a prison unit. You have time to do just about everything over a 30 year period. Thank to the last two posters for being so nice, I expected flack, I probably will still get some. I posted a Nursing Then and Now thread over under general nursing discussion if anyone wants to have a look.

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  8. by   lita1857
    WOW...WOW...WOW I read the stats Volantus14...couldn't believe my eyes! I have no idea what the numbers are here in NY never mind my little world(aka rochester on lake ontario). I was deeply touch by the kind and understanding posts of justanurse and PPL towards what you said oramar. True nurses seem to just understand. Iwould like to post my memories of nursing on that thread I saw of nursing now and before...just too painful right now, I'm doing managed care/call center...I did it for the money and I miss clinical like heck! Till then....
  9. by   Volantus14
    I, recently, talked to an official of a State of Texas agency. This person told me that his agency had recently referred 9 R.N.'s to a local hospital for employment at the hospital's request. None of these nurses were hired. The State of Texas is a "right to work" state. That means that a nurse can be terminated for just about any reason. The above means to me that many nurses who are competent,who refuse to be negligent in their care of patients, and who insist on reasoable working conditions and reasonable job security may have difficulty finding nursing employment. The same will drive competent caring nurses out of nursing.

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    Mr. C.V. Compton Shaw, R.N., CLA
  10. by   bunky
    Hi Voltanus. Also being in Texas, I can believe those statistics. I can totally understand oramar's decision to leave it. I'd do it in a minute if I were in her shoes.

    I am curious as to whether or not it is harder to be a nurse here than anywhere else in the country. Are the demands placed on us here greater than in any other state? It feels like it, but I have no basis for comparison. Voltanus do you personally find the blue collar workforce here in Texas to be exploited and easily exploitable? You mention the right to work status, do you feel that it goes hand in hand? Could that perhaps be an explanation as to why nursing in Texas is where it's at and why 20% choose not to bother?
  11. by   lids
    hey it doesn't surprise me , it is something that happens in any field, especially nurses are mainly woman , some marry men that can be the main bread winner.it doesn't seem to be an outragious percentile, it happens in cosmotology only 20% do work in the field.

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  12. by   Nurseprotect
    Originally posted by Volantus14:
    In the State of Texas, despite a current very serious nursing shortage, approximately 15%-20% of the individuals who hold R.N. licensure are unemployed. This statistic comes from the statistical information provided at the web site for The Texas Board of Nurse Examiners. They are not employed in any capactity. This unemployment rate of R..N.'s does not include R.N.'s who hold employment in fields other than in nursing and/or who hold employment as part time R.N.'s. This seems to me to be a very startling and disturbing employment statistic to me. What could be causing the same, especially in the light of a very serious nursing shortage in Texas? I don't want to speculate on the because it appears to me to imply some very serious problems that nurses have with regard to employment issues in Texas and, probably, nationally.

    July 16, 2000
    I have worked in several states. TEXAS IS WITHOUT QUESTION THE ABSOLUTE WORST STATE IN WHICH I HAVE WORKED WHEN IT COMES TO NURSING. I am leaving this state in the morning. Last week was the last straw during one of the most dangerous shifts of my career in Houston Texas. The Texas Nurses Association has basically been "bought and paid for" by Administrator type nurses. If you insist on safe staffing, safe patient care environments, adequate pay, etc. as a nurse in Texas you WILL be terminated-end of story. If you continue working in the unsafe environment, become involved in an error, and get reported, you will not have any backup from the very facility who placed you into the situation leading to the error. You could go to another facility but they are fairly consistently poor. Health care is going downhill throughout the US but Texas deserves an award for exceptionally poor quality. Nurses are still dealt with through intimidation and threats by managers. The staffing in many Hospitals is absolutely criminal. The average norm. for ICU staffing in Texas has become 3 patients per nurse-and the nurses just accept it! Like I said, yes it really is that bad in Texas and I am getting the hell out. If anybody would like clarification on anything I have stated I would be happy to respond. I have learned not to make statements that I am not willing to substantiate.



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    Steven S. Lee, RN
    Chief Voluntary Officer
    Nurseprotect
    Nurseprotect@aol.com
  13. by   Volantus14
    Dear Mr. Lee: I agree completely with your statement. I would leave Texas,also, as soon as possible, if I could. Thank you for your courageous and informative post.

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    Mr. C.V. Compton Shaw, R.N., CLA
  14. by   bunky
    Dear Steve, and Voltanus,

    Thank you both! Really! After being here for almost 5 years, I thought maybe it was all just me, whining, pesimistic, scared
    #%&!less half the time, and being told by superiors that it was all time management skills! I never believed that time management crap, but in time you really begin to wonder and doubt your abilities when so many other nurses shut up and don't complain about it. I am so amazed to hear someone else putting into words what I feared to be true all along, yet was unsure of it's validity at the same time. You listen to it day in and day out and after awhile you doubt your better judgement, but I suppose that that's entirely what they want from us isn't it. Acceptance of it as is, no matter what it costs us emotionally or professionally.

    Please Steve, once you're out safely, tell us more. Good luck to you!

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