Quote from chigap
An unpopular proposal and I will get slammed for this, but increase the number of men in nursing would be one way for change. Also, I just watched "Mean Girls" last night and there was alot of truth in what I saw. Much of what is wrong with nursing is the culture; it has allowed the corporations to maintain an upperhand for as long as I can remember. Nurses must accept some responsibility and take positive steps for change.
It is no secret that much of the power in corporate US is held by men. The situation in Iceland is making some people think that perhaps a better balance is needed. The current financial situation of the world shows that there are fundamental problems in the corporate/business world. Perhaps doing something very different will yield very different results.
Perhaps if nurses held those above them in the hierarchy responsible, then things would change. I, for instance, have never heard one of my colleagues say to a supervisor, "This situation is bad and I will make sure that if I go down, you go down." I've said it a few times and the response I get is usually my colleagues gazing at their feet. Anyone in management who has RN behind their name, is just as much responsible as we are as long as they have been made aware of the situation( in theory).
But guess what, they wouldn't be managers if they were very sympathetic and have you ever heard of a nurse manager/supervisor being reported to the board for making unsafe decisions? I haven't.
My point here is that this loan thing has been done before. The chicken little thing has been done before. The recession thing has happened before. One good thing about not retaining nurses is that there is no long term memory, so there need not be a long term solution. The "Watch me pull a rabbitt out of my hat" routine just gets recycled.
You stated that you have never heard of a nurse manager/supervisor being reported to the board for making unsafe decisions...just because you have not heard of one does not mean that it doesn't happen. As a nurse manager I am acutely aware of several cases and take not only my nursing license very seriously but the license and certificates of those I manage! I am sorry for the places that you have choosen to work "they wouldn't be manager if they were very sympathetic...", they sound like there was a great divide between 'you' (the nurse) and 'them' (management). I became
a nursing manager specifically because I wanted to change this type of culture. And I do care as my 12 -14 hour days will testify to. As other managers I know do care as well.
While much of the power held in corporations is held by men, I have worked for MANY owners/CEO's/Regional Managers etc that are female. It is not
a male/female thing. It is also not as easy as saying that nurses(mainly female) should behave as males do in more male dominated fields. Nursing is not just any profession. That being said, nursing do need to start to really
come together and make their voices heard. We have talked for years about nurse to patient ratio and where has that got us? Nowhere, we are still talking! And still
working with unsafe ratios that put the lives of our patients at risk not to mention the very license that we worked soooo hard to attain! And this continues even with the unions that are supposedly taking our money to ensure better working conditions for us...hah!
Increased funding for nurses is great in theory but only if we
as nurses can communicate to the President and our government that this is just a start! Just the top of the iceburg of the mess that our healthcare system is in. I keep hearing how our President has the backing of nurses and physicians (which scares me as I don't know many doctors that actually know or appreciate the work that nurses do and would NOT like them to speak for me!) but also when I hear from the press that nurses back Obama's views and what we
supposedly back him on, let's me know that he does not know what a nurse is or what our difficulties are. It is up to us to be clear what we do, how we are put in terrible situations everyday by way of nurse-patient ratios, more paperwork than is possible to keep up with given these ratios (and in LTC I attribute this to Medicare/Medicaid regs and their almost q 3 month changes on these regs...how many HOURS have you WASTED changing MD orders on a generic med or treatment because what was covered last month is NOT covered this month but the patient has to have this!!!!!!!!!!!) How many times have you had to fight with the pharmacy to get a medication/treatment only to be told by them that these same entities will not cover it and you are right in the middle of this life/limb saving treatment! It's ludicrous!
Anyway, I didn't start this to blast you, I really am sorry that you have had the management experienes that you have. I know exactly what you mean when you talk about the 'pull the rabbit out of the hat' routine, but I do believe that we as nurses have a chance NOW to be heard...to make a change here, in our country at this great time of change to stop this from happening a gain. I beleive that we are smart enough and through these rooms and being active in organizations, writing to our congress and yes even the media, we can be heard.
I just watch Durbin talk about how he met yesterday with some nurses to talk about healthcare reform and getheir opinions...this is just a start. But we
nurses can't just wait for a congressman or senator come to us, we
have to get out of our b&m sessions and proactively
go to them, before
this reform is passed and we are stuck with what they
decide for us!