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Burnout...what to do about it?

Nurses   (2,147 Views | 7 Replies)

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Anyone here ever experience burnout? If so, what did you do about it? I have been a nurse for almost 5 years...which is really not long at all. But, I am heading closer and closer to burnout, if I’m not there already.

I used to look forward to going to work...now I just get such a sick feeling in my stomach every time before I start my shift. I used to work med/surg before making the switch to ER. I just feel like new policies are constantly being passed which involve never ending “audits” of nurses. Everything we do from bedside report to blood administration is audited...it either involves someone physically standing there with a clipboard watching you do something and then checking off it you did it correct, or adding a bunch of different paperwork to fill out that gets placed in the managers mailbox for an additional audit. I would occasionally pick up on the floor and vitals now became a part of the RN’s responsibility, not the aides, because there was no help (VS are q4h). They started making nurses go to something called SNAP rounds which take 45 minutes...which comes after having to follow a huge checklist of (an audited!) bedside report that takes an hour. It’s also in the middle of med passes (that are at 8am, 10am, noon, 2pm, 4pm, 5pm, 6pm) that involve insulin...which, if it’s not given within 30 minutes, we’re audited and talked to! If we do blood administration and forget 1 VS (such as RR during 1 vital check, or are off on our time), we get audited and talked to.

Add all this to patients becoming more demanding (and sicker!), census going higher, and wages staying lower, I just feel done...totally done. I have already cut back to 24 hours a week (my hospital started the Baylor program). I started counseling. I just don’t know what else to do...I feel like a giant bundle of nerves everyday, and I used to be so confident.

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13 Followers; 4,056 Posts; 31,525 Profile Views

There is nothing wrong with YOU or your very reasonable feelings about this.

Burnout is not the appropriate label for it.

Chin up. Put your confidence and sense of self-worth back in order, as this weight is not yours to bear. You have no professional duty to imposed nonsense.

Instead, be empowered. Formulate plan B and put it into action.

Best wishes ~

👍🏽🙂

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Studnt4now has 5 years experience as a ASN and specializes in Peds/Post Partum.

4 Posts; 476 Profile Views

Have you tried applying at a different facility? Possibly a different unit? 

Nurses make money by moving around- not staying and getting small annual raises. I made $1.20 more when I moved after 2 years at my starting job. 

Maybe you should try a different unit? I know I wouldn't have lasted had I worked with adults.

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1 Follower; 786 Posts; 7,359 Profile Views

I think a lot of facilities are auditing everything due to the way reimbursements work now. However, the powers that be fail to realize that the additional charting imposed on us to validate their existence makes unhappy employees and thus unhappy patients. Thankfully, my employer is starting to get the message that we can’t do it all and are starting (to talk about) backing off. 

Change is hard, especially when it’s shoved down your throat.  It’s more work for you, with no perceived benefit. Most of the time, the powers that be don’t even explain why the changes were implemented nor do they ask for input from those effected. 

The obvious answer is stop picking up in the floors. It’s not worth it. You could find employment elsewhere, such as another hospital or perhaps an urgent care center (or something totally different if you chose). I have stuck around so far; I’m hoping all the new changes eventually die down and/or I learn to adapt and overcome.  Nightshift helps too 😜

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Jmedic/rn has 3 years experience as a ADN, EMT-P.

4 Posts; 112 Profile Views

The nursing profession has been bullied into a corner over the course of decades. Men in white shirts and ties with no background in nursing have been delegating work loads and patient nurse ratios while nurses have perpetually stared at their shoes. Profit margins are the new priority with patient care and safety running a distant second. If we nurses don't learn how to unite and speak out in ONE VOICE this situation will only grow worse in coming years!! It is time to create a Nurse's Coalition that actually advocates for nurses! We are three million strong!! It is time to rein in the greed in healthcare and create REAL protections for all nurses!!

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368 Posts; 6,930 Profile Views

Why don't they hire some more nurses with the money they are paying those "auditors"?  This is a rhetorical question.  I know the reason.

 This situation is like having the pressure of a state survey everyday. I've been on both sides of that hot mess.

Edited by twinsmom788

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EyeOfTheTiger523 has 13 years experience and specializes in Hospice.

5 Posts; 161 Profile Views

Since when are nurses required to do vital signs in the hospital? Isn't that what CNA's are for there among other things?

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Tink87 has 13 years experience as a BSN, LPN, RN.

72 Posts; 2,362 Profile Views

On 9/23/2019 at 2:39 AM, EyeOfTheTiger523 said:

Since when are nurses required to do vital signs in the hospital? Isn't that what CNA's are for there among other things?

More and more units are going to an 'all nurse' model. I worked on a tele floor with no aids, just one LPN that worked a few days a week and helped us with patient mobility. RNs had to do vitals, toilet and bathe, answer all call lights, feed patients that need help, etc. All while having a full assignment. Yes, our ratios were different (4:1 days and 5:1 nights) but it was still difficult. Granted, there are some benefits.

I am now in an ICU with one tech at night to help with turns and stuff, and an LPN during the day. RNs are still responsible for most. We answer lights, feed, clean up, toilet... We do it all. It can definitely take a toll on you when you are already crazy busy.

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