What is the major reason nurses leave? - page 4

What do you think is the major reason nurses leave the profession out of these? 1.) Nurse to pt ratio without accounting for pt acuity 2.) Scheduling of staff 3.) Nurses treatment of one... Read More

  1. by   Warpster
    Brutal working conditions would be the number one reason, I should think, since wages have come up in recent years. The conditions include, but aren't limited to:

    1. Forced overtime 12 hour shifts at management's convenience.

    2. Short staffing by attrition resulting in dangerously heavy patient loads.

    3. Lack of assistive personnel and equipment.

    4. Lack of general equipment necessitating searches off the floor during already busy shifts.

    5. Lack of ancillary staff forcing more and more work on the backs of already overworked nurses.

    6. Lack of time for simple physical needs, like dinner and bathroom breaks, thanks to management's lack of knowledge about what short staffing does to the workload.

    7. The constant terror that someone's needs will be unmet, that a complication might be missed, that an error might occur due to short staffing and exhaustion.

    8. Complete lack of support from management, who seem to view nurses as drains on the hospital budget instead of people who generate the hospital's income.

    9. The ever present danger of assault by patients and visitors.

    Some of these can be accepted as part of the job, but taken all together they are adequate reason for nurses to quit the profession. Throwing money at us won't do it. They have to do something about the JOB.
  2. by   mixyplixy
    YUP, all of the above. I'm just so tired of it...I thought it was me for a long time till I found this site!
  3. by   bagwash
    Quote from saguaro13
    What do you think is the major reason nurses leave the profession out of these?

    1.) Nurse to pt ratio without accounting for pt acuity

    2.) Scheduling of staff

    3.) Nurses treatment of one another (Management's treatment of staff, etc)

    4.) Pay (or lack thereof )

    5.) Inability to provide the pt care desired due to administrative requirements

    All responses are valued! Thanks!:wink2:


    I'm glad you asked!

    I would say 1, 3, 4 and 5. I'm a Registered Nurse in Australia. One thing that really bugs me is having to be a ward clerk--as well as a nurse, unpaid diagnostician, cleaner etc--doing things such as putting together admission packs, photocopying charts endlessly to replenish stationery stock (because management is too cheap to get a printer to supply them), booking tests for patients, ordering meds from pharmacy etc. Of course the photocopier is inevitably a long way from the ward and breaks down regularly and everything else that is needed for these supremely mind-numbing tasks is always arranged as illogically and shabbily as possible so that everything takes 5 times longer than it should. I really didn't go into nursing to do this kind of work--far from it.

    The other major pain is management who always seem to have totally unrealistic ideas about what can be achieved, which they maintain because they never get reality--tested by having contact with those strange creatures called patients. Their ideas are mostly totally inappropriate (and unworkable) and they (management) seem to exist in blissful ignorance of what their working staff actually think of them. It seems they do nothing other than get in the way of work actually getting done. It's best to tell them nothing and never argue, just work around them as best as can be managed.

    Lastly, I am sick of being expected to be an inexhaustable empathy squeeze-bag, who can suck up any amount of abuse from patients (I work in an eating-disorders ward) and still come up smiling, never needing any positive feedback or training/counselling to help one cope.

    Sometimes I think there must be an easier way to make a living...!
    Last edit by bagwash on Nov 6, '06
  4. by   tstgirl45
    also worn out backs knees and restless leg syndrome
    Quote from Pompom
    All the above plus the health problems you develop over time like herinated discs.
  5. by   jabiru
    Quote from jrbl77
    another reason is too many chiefs and not enough indians. there are too many administrators telling staff nurses how to do their jobs when they themselves haven't gotta a clue. when joint commision is on the way it gets even worse. every dept in the hospital tells nursing how to do their job.
    Wow, ain't that the truth. Even at ward level, there are fewer and fewer nurses doing the actual hands-on care. And what's with all the frickin' meetings? All the hours wasted in meetings talking about patient care instead of doing it.
  6. by   jabiru
    Quote from bagwash
    I'm glad you asked!

    I would say 1, 3, 4 and 5. I'm a Registered Nurse in Australia. One thing that really bugs me is having to be a ward clerk....
    You bet. I get sick and tired of answering the stupid telephone. 99% of outside calls are from friends/relatives wanting to be transferred through to the bedside. I don't remember signing up to be a receptionist.
  7. by   bmh-lpn
    1.) Nurse to pt ratio without accounting for pt acuity

    2.) Scheduling of staff

    3.) Nurses treatment of one another (Management's treatment of staff, etc)

    4.) Pay (or lack thereof )

    5.) Inability to provide the pt care desired due to administrative requirements.


    Definitely all the above! Especially wages! It is sad that some of my relatives who work in factories (one is an RN! One is my husband) make 2-3 times more than I do! Plus they have far better medical and dental plans, including plans for glassses/contacts! They get every weekend off and paid holidays (Yes, I know it's part of nursing)! They even started off with 2 weeks vacation time (I started with one!)! Do they like their jobs at the factory? Yep! They said they have a lot less stress than when they worked as a nurse. She says she missed nursing but not all the belonie that went with it. She loves being a supervisor in the factory setting. So sad!
  8. by   Antikigirl
    Before I got this newer job, which even though I have run into some bumps I do adore...I would have definately said Nurse to PT ratio without concern to acuity! In fact, I about burned out and quit...sadly we couldn't afford it so I just got severely depressed instead!!!!!!!!

    It weighs on you so much..this going to work always wondering "how many are they going to throw at me today?". Or my favorite "will I make a mistake because I have so many?". on the drive home! With that on my mind constantly just on the drive there and back...wow, and not to mention a black cloud on my days off just knowing that I had to go back in a day or two! I was miserable..actually beyond miserable!

    Then add in a admin or mang staff that doesn't empathize, doesn't respond to ideas, blames the staff instead of finding out the actual issues causing probelms....oh man, I felt I was a pack mule with a split hoof and a full load and they just wanted to put on more on my back!!!!!!! I wanted out...I pleaded to be let out...but thankfully I didn't because now I have a job that I can handle, an admin/manage staff that is pro RN and listens to ideas, cares about our health (mental and physical) and so on!

    However..it took me 7 years of heck to get there (not including school). . Why did it have to be so darned hard???
  9. by   Valanda
    I didn't leave nursing, but I quit a nursing job because the facility was backwards.
    Management seemed to think I was nuts and refused to listen to me.

    This facility had 3 floors.
    The first floor were ambulatory patients.
    The second floor were patients who could get into their wheelchairs with one standby assist.
    The third floor were patients who were total assist. Every shift I had this huge knot in my chest worried that the building was going to catch fire and I'd never be able to get those total assist patients out!
    I explained endlessly that this set-up was dangerous in case of emergency. I had recurring nightmares of these patients burning up.
    Management insisted it was better for "marketing" to have the happy face of the facility more open to visitors.
    They were not going to rearrange the entire building to ease my anxiety.
    I just had to stop working there.
  10. by   RN(MH)
    1/ The pay and the hours that nurses are expected to work in some places.
    2/ The stress that nurses suffer all the time whilst trying to do everything that needs to be done due to understaffing.
    3/The cover ups that go on with regards to bad practice by some nurses (this is terrible in private nursing homes). The owners cover things up to save their homes and their profit.
  11. by   hope3456
    [QUOTE=Valanda]I didn't leave nursing, but I quit a nursing job because the facility was backwards.
    Management seemed to think I was nuts and refused to listen to me.

    This facility had 3 floors.
    The first floor were ambulatory patients.
    The second floor were patients who could get into their wheelchairs with one standby assist.
    The third floor were patients who were total assist. Every shift I had this huge knot in my chest worried that the building was going to catch fire and I'd never be able to get those total assist patients out!
    I explained endlessly that this set-up was dangerous in case of emergency. I had recurring nightmares of these patients burning up.
    Management insisted it was better for "marketing" to have the happy face of the facility more open to visitors.
    They were not going to rearrange the entire building to ease my anxiety.
    I just had to stop working there.[/


    Definately an issue for the Board odf Nursing to address......or maybe the local fire dept. Come to think of it, I knew a RN a couple years back who got a LTC facility in BIG trouble for reporting them to the fire dept for code violations that she brought to the admin first - who did nothing.
  12. by   Valanda
    I did speak with the fire department about the facility once.
    They assured me that the home had fire doors and a sprinkler system and that patients could be moved from one area to another and that everything was up to code.
    Basically, that I was over-reacting.
    I just couldn't stop worrying over it.

    It seemed to be so illogical and begging trouble.
  13. by   rbarnett
    I would have to say nurse to patient ratio without taking into consideration the acuity of the patients. I work on a Progressive Cardiac Care Unit and we always have 5-7 patients. At times we even have 8! I think that should be illegal. How can you provide excellent care when you have so many patients?

    Second I would say Nurses eat their young. Don't these nurses remember being a new grad? I am sure they didn't walk out of nursing school knowing it all. I believe expertise is better used when offering someone some advice or constructive criticism as opposed to talking about them, allienating them or trying to embarass them. Shame on the nurses who behave that way!

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