Nat'l Nurses Week(ness)

  1. It is my opinion that our celebration of ourselves and public displays of "look at us" are embarrassing.

    I did a search on popular search engine). Here are the keywords searched and # of results.

    "National Nurses Week" 1,080 results
    "National Lawyers Week" 0 results
    "National Doctors Week" 0 results
    "National Housekeepers week" 41 results
    "National teachers week" 33 results
    "National professors week" 0 results

    Now I am sure this data doesn't mean squat but it is interesting that the professions most universally considered "professional" have 0 results while those seen as "less than professional" or "blue collar" have hits.

    I think banners point out more than anything that we want recognition. Wanting recognition is weak. It makes me feel we are a bunch of begging dogs. Nobody likes or respects begging dogs - even if that is what he thinks it takes to get attention.

    Leno makes jokes - well we HAD to point at say look at me. Then we get mad when he does his job(however tasteless).

    I know it isn't entirely feasible but if I was going to try to get nursing into the professional realm thiese are some things I would do:

    1. Ban nurses week and other pat my back and toot my horn activities.

    2. Throw away all the touchy feely nurse poems that act as if nurses are better than regular humans with more compassion, stamina, etc. Its only good for nurses to read to themself while they look in the mirror and if is that irritating to me it must really be silly to non-nurses.

    3. Adopt some standards for patient safety and stick to them. Don't accept an assignment that you think is unsafe. Complaining about staffing while continuing to work short just proves to management you are willing take part in jeopardizing your patients even while a prudent nurse sees it to be unsafe. It is true enough that if you are the only one you will simply be fired and replaced. This is why as a profession it proves we are weak kneed(unlike lawyers, doctors, etc).

    4. Hold each other to high standards. When you see that nurse using bad technique, smelling like cigarettes, cologne, dirty uniform, curt, rude, etc., realize she/he is representing nurses and it IS more damaging than anything Leno could say.

    In short. If we want Nursing to be treated like a true profession we need to elevate it to the level of a true profession.

    That doesn't include celebrating ourselves or media campagns.

  2. Visit HotSpam profile page

    About HotSpam

    Joined: Apr '01; Posts: 53; Likes: 7
    Home Healthcare and Hospice


  3. by   natalie

    You've made alot of good points. I've also felt that Nurses' week has been a bit embarrassing.
  4. by   Zee_RN
    HotSpam, I agree with you. Having a Nurses' Week embarasses me for my profession and those touchy-feely poems make my skin crawl. While I do feel nursing is something you have to have in your heart, people have to stop looking at nursing as a "mission field" in order for it to be seen as a profession and get the respect it deserves. But you put it much better than I did
  5. by   HotSpam
    I am surprised I am not taking more heat over this. I was worried it was going to be an unpopular post. It gives me hope for our future that others share similar thoughts.

  6. by   Doey
    I agree with all of you. I have felt that it was not only embarrassing but patronizing as well. Like someone patting me on the head and saying "what a good job you're doing little girl" but ignoring what it is nurses really do. And as for those touchy-feely poems...PLEEEEASE!! Enough of them already. Like Zee said, we have to stop looking at nursing as a "mission field". It keeps us in a subservient role where no one takes us seriously.
  7. by   JennieBSN
    I can one-up the embarassing stuff...our management came up with a BRILLIANT scheme to help recognize nurses that receive pt. compliments, and give them a little 'something extra' as a bonus for each compliment rec'd. Hold that gets worse...the 'something extra' is a dollar...and not even a REAL dollar, a MCDONALD'S dollar. Yep. That's right. After 4 'gooooooooooood nurse!' compliments, you can run out and buy that prized Happy Meal!!!

    One of our nurses got one, and we cut out her picture, pasted it in the middle of it, and tacked it on the bb in the nurses lounge with 'we love to see you smile' and other sarcastic stuff (this was the brainchild of the nurse who rec'd the dollar) all over it. Our manager got her panties all in a bunch and got all upset because we were making fun of the hospital's STUPID, INSULTING campaign!

    Hell, yes nurses' week is embarassing. Walked into a greeting card store this week? They have an entire little SECTION chock full of sappy 'nurses' week' cards. Uuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuugggggh. Just makes ya wanna bring up your lunch...
  8. by   codebluechic
    Thank You! Now I know I'm not the only one who felt Nurse's week was a joke. Our manager made a video of all of us in "action" set to some sappy music. Then she made us watch it half a dozen times!!!
  9. by   Jason-ACNP
    I can one-up the embarassing stuff...our management came up with a BRILLIANT scheme to help recognize nurses that receive pt. compliments, and give them a little 'something extra' as a bonus for each compliment rec'd. Hold that gets worse...the 'something extra' is a dollar...and not even a REAL dollar, a MCDONALD'S dollar. Yep. That's right. After 4 'gooooooooooood nurse!' compliments, you can run out and buy that prized Happy Meal!!!

    The aforementioned passage represents the epitome of PATHETIC. Such managers make my skin crawl just as much as those ridiculous, sappy, co-dependent poems that Spam mentioned.

    Overall, this is an excellent post Spam. I thought I would cut and paste it in an email and send it to the 50+ nurses in my address book (who don't frequent this BB). The four issues you mentioned here have merit.
  10. by   fiestynurse
    Jason, This shows such disrespect for us as a profession. I hope the nurses give em' hell for this bright idea!!
  11. by   TLynn
    You guys make me sick. You are the main reson for the nursing shortage. Nurses work their butts off to get recognized and are heros to many and derserve to be recognized. You make me hate this bulliton board. If you don't like this profession get the hell out and make room for those touchy feely poems, because our touch heals more than you ever care to know. We use our hands, our hearts to ease patients I would hate to be your patient , I would rather die!
  12. by   Chellyse66
    I have to say that I also agree. Now poetry has a place, I think more for the patients and friends of nurses who really do not understand what we do and gives them an outlet to express themselves to us. How many of you have gotten cards ,letters, teddybears,cups, t-shirts, umbrellas, tote bags. A well deserved thank you for assisting me, or seeing that person stop vomiting or finding rest, or a moment without pain. That is what makes me feel I have done the task set before me. But I know that I have friends that feel good when they give me those things or send me emails with poems and verses. So in knowing it makes them feel good to give it to me. But from management it is an insult, totally different ball game, and from associations representing the profession, it is a shame. It does feel like being patronized. I would like to see the recognition come in a different form. I being a supervisor have to hand out those stupid "facility dollars", I can not stand it (I usually give the person 10-20 of them at a time all the while apologizing...) It is pathetic to have to stand in the face of a nurse and say" you are important take this fake money so you know we appreciate you and by the way can you work a double? and there are two admissions on the way" it is embarassing...
    I would rather buy them a beer after work LOL or buy them luch and cover thier load so they can take it. I have done that before, speaks miles.
    How about we have one of those days during nursing week, where like in High school, people reversed roles. They called it something like reversi day or something( that is not it but..). Anyway management could trade places with staff for the day
    Not likely...I personally like pictures better and documentaries, they tell the story better than poetic sonnets and dewey bumper stickers and the like. Thanks for the post Hot Spam!!!
  13. by   rncountry
    Personally I could care less about nurses week. To me it is big joke. Ranks right up there with Secretary's day. Good way to sell hallmark cards. I would much rather prefer to simply be treated with dignity and as a professional. Over the years I have gotten a beach towel with the logo of the hospital, a tote bag with a logo of the hospital, a huge chocolate bar with the logo of the hospital, I did once get a pin that was in good taste that had RN on it. Have had banners hung up, etc...
    I do not like the image of a nurse that is all giving, all compassionate and all that. I am a human being that has limits and I don't even want to try to be a super nurse. I just want to be able to do my job to the best of my ability, and not have to take a bunch of crap in order to do it. I don't like all my patients, I don't put up with being treated like a waitress or second class citizen by patients or family, which has occasionally gotten me in trouble with management. I always give good care regardless of whether I like the patient or not, but I will not pretend that I can smile and be happy while taking care of a patient that just tried to smack me, or was verbally nasty either. I don't like sappy poems that make me out to be an angel or something akin to that. I am not an angel, I don't want to be either. I don't feel compelled to uphold an image of a nurse that has me behaving like a nun. We allow that image to define us and then wonder why our employers and patients except us to behave that way, and become upset when we don't want to. We have have created our own prison by buying into this type of stuff.
    While the poem above is pretty it is not how I define myself or what I do. I know there are nurses who do, and while I do not degrade them, I don't want to be a part of it either. I am just me, a human being who happens to be a nurse. I am also someones mother and someones wife too, but I don't allow that to fully define who I am or what I want out of my life.
  14. by   Mijourney
    Hi. I agree with previous posters who either support or don't support nurses week. In my opinion it's a two-edged sword. It's a matter of what meaning you give to the week.

    Curious? How and where did nurses day or week first originate? From HotSpam's post, I note that those occupations who tend to have a week designated in their honor are female predominated? The question is do we value or devalue the week because of this knowledge?

    Perhaps nurses week would be more meaningful if it were used as a vehicle for groups of nurses to sit down with the respective boards of directors, the CEO and administration to hash out problems in patient care and with nursing pay, working environment, and benefits. As pointed out under another post, this may be a good time to do a poll of one's employer.