disability-- do you know nurses with disabilities?

Nurses Disabilities


If I have a disability and applied for disability will it hurt my chances getting into nursing program. I have a hard time writing my papers in an hour without errors and think I have a little disability but nothing major. i am getting better in my writing but I need to take English 1 & 2 and take the regents exam.I am at a community college, and I would like to transfer to a university. I have a speech impair. Am I wasting my time trying get into nursing program or should I do something different? thanks!

Sorry , I was taking about a learning disability. I learn fast but not quiet as fast as others plus I have a speak slight speach impair so didn't know if it hurt my chances getting into nursing school. I think some of my problem is confidences in myself too. Thank you for you help.


693 Posts

Not sure what kind of a disability you mean when you say you 'think' you have a disability...

I once worked with a nurse who was totally deaf, but she was able to communicate with other staff and with the patients.

Jo Dirt

3,270 Posts

I think it will largely depend on your disability. If you applied for disability I am certain it would not affect your ability to go to nursing school (unless perhaps it is a mental disorder). When you get a job you will lose your disability, though.


11 Posts

Not sure what kind of a disability you mean when you say you 'think' you have a disability...

I once worked with a nurse who was totally deaf, but she was able to communicate with other staff and with the patients.

If somone worked in nursing that is deaf than I shouldn't have any problems because My eyes and hearing are good. I have looked into other fields, and I always felt nursing or teacher was the only things I would like to do.

Baby Catcher

86 Posts

I know a very good nurse with a severe stutter. She does a great job and it's never been an issue.

Long Term Care Columnist / Guide

VivaLasViejas, ASN, RN

108 Articles; 9,984 Posts

Specializes in LTC, assisted living, med-surg, psych.

I went to school with a young gal who was dyslexic. She struggled mightily just to get through the required reading, scored poorly on written work and tests, and more than once was put on academic probation.......but she was one of the best nurses to come out of our class! Luckily for all concerned, our instructors found a way to test her orally, and she also got to take the NCLEX as an oral exam, which she aced. :)


6,011 Posts


I worked with a girl who had a cleft palate, another one was blind in one eye, another deaf in one ear with diminished hearing in the other. There was also a LE amputee,and a nurse with a significant limb shortening.

Go ahead with your dream. It comes in stages. First you have recognised a potential difficulty. Take the courses, interview, take the English courses and ask for extra help. You will never know unless you try.

boggle, ASN, RN

393 Posts

Specializes in Med-Surg.

Accurate written and oral communication is essential in nursing, BUT there are stratagies to make this work when these skills are not your strong points.

Really, I think us nurses write the same stuff all the time. We have built up a vocabulary of terminolgy, abbreviations and phrases that we use over and over. We use the same format for writing medications and orders, assessment findings and narrative notes. The specifics in those writings change with each patient, but we have an ever growing vocabulay for those specifics.

Adhering to those formats and carrying a medical terminology spell checker helps. Unfortunately, in school the formats for documentation change all the time. Each semester can have different forms and requirements for written work. You may be able to get extra and early help with learnig the style of documentation needed for your courses. Does your school have an office for support of students with disabilities? (I think that's required.)

I find "nursing writing" much easier than the creative writing required for an english class. It's much more factual and measureable. And when I get stuck, there is always a text or terminology book or knowledgeable co-worker to check with for just the right word for that "funny looking lesion on my patient's nose".

Good luck to you. Let us know how you make out.

Specializes in Interventional Pain Mgmt NP; Prior ICU and L/D RN.

At the facility I work at there is actually a Resident that is a Quad! He has a personal assistant to help him with his assessments, etc...from what I have heard he is a good resident and the patients really like him. He plans on going into rehab and working at the rehab facility he was in after his accident! So if he can get through med school and be going through residency as a QUAD I think that says a lot of what people are capable of!!!

Specializes in Education, Acute, Med/Surg, Tele, etc.

I think it is very case by case! I mean, I haven't worked with a nurse that has admitted to any disablities, or seemed to have one...so I haven't had the experience...

BUT, I have worked with my hubby's company on ride alongs (paramedic), and they have a paramedic who has narcolepsy..okay what a condition to have in an ambulance! LOL. But they have made changes to accomidate him, and he may have a spell once a year during work hours (he doesn't get to drive much..LOL!). He is a great paramedic with 20 years experience, so to fire him or let him go would be a loss to our community! Thank goodness we have a great ambulance company that appreciates the tallent and willing to work with most disablities (I mean, some you can't work with...a wc bound paramedic wouldn't work...or someone that has substantial physical limitations (and I am talking in ambulance work...office or education no probelm!!! :) )..and I don't consider that discriminatory...just common sence towards realistic expectations for the job itself! It is a very physical job!!!).

Be honest with yourself and your own personal limitations...and don't go into something that will be too much for yourself...nursing can be hard enough on its own without putting other challenges into the mix :).

Oh yeah...and me, I have to be very careful with numbers! I tend to reverse numbers when stressed...I deal with that by double checking everything I do in regards to numbers...even if it takes a while. And for emergency meds and such...those I practice till it is second nature...because I know I may have a limitation there, and practice may not mean perfect...but sure helps! :)


11 Posts

I beat limitations by studing hard, and I usually make A's or B's in all my classes. I think my biggest worry is being discriminated against by the teachers or the teachers being hateful because i am alittle different. I went to lpn and dropped out because I felt like the teacher was so going faill me even if i passed. well, thank you for all the encouragement. Which program would be easier to do, BSN or ASN? thanks for your help.

haras regnurps

97 Posts

Specializes in or/trauma/teaching/geriatrics.

define disability:

I have worked with several nurses who could have applied for disabiltiy and choose to work.




height, yes knew a nurse that legally qualified as a midget.


Each person must decide for themselves if nursing can accomadate that specific disability. and if so go for it. Some disabiled nurses are the most caring and empathetic nurses that there are. Patients can sometimes relate to them, especially in rehab. Find it a real asset when you take something considered negative by society and turn it into a positive for your career. good luck

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