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Nightingale-Inspired Nurses' Week Celebration

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sideshowstarlet has 4 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in LTC, Med-Surg, Geriatrics.

1 Article; 3,290 Profile Views; 65 Posts

An ideal Nurses' Appreciation Week itinerary inspired by our idol, Florence Nightingale. Written for my coworkers on a skilled unit at a local LTC, but the fun can be enjoyed by all!

Nightingale-Inspired Nurses' Week Celebration

During my graveyard last night, while looking for something else, I found a not-yet-flying flyer in the boss's office detailing plans for the upcoming Nurses' Appreciation Week (May 6-12, 2016). Itinerary is as follows:

Friday, May 6th:

In honor of Nurse Nightingale's revolutionary redesign of a typical nursing unit, which allowed for better ventilation, better infection control, and a central nurses' station to enable better patient, the skilled unit will once again modernize its design, this time bringing us into the 21st century! All bed alarms will be connected to lights hung outside the resident's door next to the call light. There will also be a bed alarm switchboard at the nurses' station situated right next to the call light switchboard. This way, in addition to hearing an annoying sound coming from somewhere and hurrying down the hall, peering into each room, the nurse will see a light as bright and clear as Nightingale's lamp and know exactly which of her ten million fall risks just remembered they were supposed to make breakfast, feed the cat, or clean the gutters. Thanks to this innovation, the nurse will have the resources available to tend to a confused, hallucinating, anxious, unsteady resident trying to leave bed/the facility unassisted with all the speed, accuracy, care, and customer service that he/she would bring to a resident who hit his call light because he has a three AM craving for jello.

And speaking of design, instead of the current spoke wheel pattern with the nurses' station in the middle, the skilled unit will adopt a spiral pattern (wide hallways and loose curves to allow for wheelchair and med cart mobility simultaneously!) with the needier residents closer to the station spiraling out to the more independent residents. Each spiraling hall will feature a couple little canals with a clean and dirty linen closet (More than one per unit!) and a walkway so you don't have to walk all the way down that long hall in order to access a different hall on the unit. I realize I'm doing a poor job explaining this. Luckily, the flyer was stapled to detailed blueprints.

This is redesign will be sure to give the weekend nurses an awesome venue for a party. Good thing, too, because on Saturday and Sunday, May 7-8, 2016, the fun really begins!

This is the weekend we really espouse Nurse Nightingale's ideals. Florence Nightingale believed that hospitals were holding civilization back and would not be needed by the year 2000. Well, better late than never! On these two very special days, the weekend nurses will have no reason to be in touch with any local hospitals. No weekend admissions! Staff available during these two days will double in order to closely monitor a resident's condition and intervene early, preventing a transfer to the hospital. Should these interventions not be enough, and a hospital transport is still required this weekend, doctors and administrators will be on hand to coordinate the transfer.

Monday, May 9:

We will be ALL ABOUT FLORENCE!!! Why did Nurse Nightingale need a lamp? Because it was dark! Why was it dark? Because she was working during the night! In honor of this basic fact, our facility will spend these 24 hours giving a shout-out to the night nurses. All night nurses will receive an old-timey lantern. During their shift, they will be ushered into a darkened med room. The floor and counters will be littered with valuables- cash, gift cards, candy, gift bags generally only given to day shift, pulse oximeters, and wrist cuffs. Using only their Nightingale lamps and superior night vision, the nurses can pick up as much as they can between rounds, call lights, and bed alarms. Multiple trips to the med room are encouraged, even applauded. Just look at that hard-working nurse tidying up for day shift!

Tuesday, May 10

This is first and second shift's day in the sun. Doctors will be putting in their own orders and initial dosing any meds they start a resident on! Your physician will also personally go through the rigmarole of ordering the med from pharmacy. This leaves the day nurses time to provide that holistic, hands-on care that has made everybody like nurses more than doctors in the first place.

Wednesday, May 11

Hump day. As nurses work 24/7, terms like hump day really don't apply. Instead of showing up to work and hearing the Mon-Fri staff attempt to explain this unknown phenomenon, all nursing staff who do not work "office hours" (whatever those are) will be given a paid day off.

Nurses' Appreciation Week concludes on Thursday, May 12, Florence Nightingale's birthday. This is a good time to reflect on where you were during last year's Appreciation Week. Maybe you had found the specialty you really want to work in during that time, maybe your assessment skills grew sharper, or you became a stronger patient advocate. Maybe you just take a little less nonsense than you used to; maybe you yourself became healthier. Or maybe last year, you weren't even a nurse. Nurse Nightingale's 196th birthday is a good time to reflect on accomplishments, on lives touched, during the previous year and to think about how nursing practice can be improved in the next.

I know what I'll be thinking: "What the heck did I come in this office for, again?"

Can't wait to celebrate Nurses' Appreciation Week with all my wonderful coworkers! I hope you enjoyed reading this article as much as I did writing it.

I'm a Registered Nurse working graveyards on a skilled unit, occasionally filling in during the days. I enjoy working with residents who have psychiatric issues and goofing around with my coworkers.

1 Article; 3,290 Profile Views; 65 Posts

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5 Posts; 482 Profile Views

What a great thing to do for your staff!! Love the humor and insight!! By reading this I can tell you are a manager that is out there in the trenches with your staff and know exactly what they are going through!! Thanks for the laugh

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Axgrinder specializes in Adult MICU/SICU.

256 Posts; 5,711 Profile Views

That was by far the most entertaining read I have had to good pleasure of running across in quite a while! I chuckled, giggled (and snorted) in all the right places! You my friend must be a hoot to work with! Where do I sign up?

I'd like to add that those same helpful physicians will also be providing all pt care as well on this day (including code brown clean ups to all those Rx'd lactose, and GI bleeders) too! Let's give those providers a happy, healthy, and appreciative round of applause for their kindness and generosity!!! :) :) :)

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LadyFree28 has 10 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in Pediatrics, Rehab, Trauma.

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:laugh::laugh::laugh:

Great way to celebrate Nurses' Week! ;)

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sideshowstarlet has 4 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in LTC, Med-Surg, Geriatrics.

1 Article; 65 Posts; 3,290 Profile Views

@Orphan RN, BSN, RN: With the providers providing ALL patient care, what will nurses do to continue being the healthcare professionals rated more trustworthy than physicians? I suppose all nurses can use the extra time to chat with their residents, paint their (the residents' although they can do their own as well, since it IS Nurses' Week) nails, and watch Judge Judy with them. That would be rather enjoyable. Thanks, Dr. Awesomesauce!!!

Edited to add: Hmm... I don't know about being a hoot to work with. I'd have to take an office poll when I work tonight.

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Axgrinder specializes in Adult MICU/SICU.

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With the physicians providing all pt care, the nurses would have time to catch their breath, finish charting … and perhaps ponder the meaning of life. From there, servers wielding cappuccino carts with excellent baked goods would appear on the unit free of charge to all (because, after all it is Nurse's Week). After this well deserved respite, perhaps a legion of skilled masseuses, and talented cosmeticians would also pop into existence, to offer all work weary nurses a well deserved massage and pedicure. Of course, this would not be complete without entertainment of some kind: a group of Mariachi's to play festive music - entertaining all and sundry - would also materialize (because Eddie Van Halen was busy) adding to the carnival type atmosphere. Administration would also come visit to tell all nurses what a spectacular job they do every single day, and how they just could not make it without the hard work, dedication, blood, sweat and tears of all nursing staff. Stacks of hundred dollar bills would be passed out to all nursing staff (including CNA' s, PCT's, and nursing students) and hand shakes all around would commence. After all this much needed recharging of the metaphysical batteries we could then go double check all that excellent pt care being voluntarily metered out - to tell the physicians that they missed a spot. :)

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sideshowstarlet has 4 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in LTC, Med-Surg, Geriatrics.

1 Article; 65 Posts; 3,290 Profile Views

@Orphan RN, BSN, RN, yeah, you really don't want to be missing spots when cleaning up a cod brown. Thank goodness for the observational skills of caffeinated nurses!!!!

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Axgrinder specializes in Adult MICU/SICU.

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Amen sista. Amen. I LOVE your user name by the way! LOL!

Never doubt the caffeinated, sugared up, well rested, happily entertained, glad-handed, and greatly reimbursed nurse to find each and every pesky missed spot. I bet all those well meaning providers will be so pleased we are on the ball, and that they have to go redo all that pericare!

(And I heard Eddie Van Halen may be there after all) …

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