No I wouldn't recommend nursing - page 2
It surprises me how many students are going into nursing. I had my BSN since 1992 and have worked in the hospitals since then. Nursing is back-breaking labor with the reoccurring role of cleaning... Read More
May 16, '01My Daughter is in her third year in college and before she went I told her under no circumstance do I want her to get into the medical field.Lucky for me she listened to me for once.The options and oppurtunities she will have and have already been offered is something nurses dont get with much more money.And as far as nursing being a calling that don't help yor kids when your working alot of 16 hours and holidays.And cant give a part of yourself back to them because your to tired all the time so not only would I tell someone no but h--- no.
May 16, '01Well, I'll put in my 2 cents. Nursing has its ups and downs. Unfortunately, lately, more down than up. I would not recommend nursing to anyone right now to be honest with you. Yes, the pay is good, but you have to put up with so much...verbal abuse from both patients and doctors, long odd hours, understaffed floor (sometimes I've had as many as 11 patients with no aid), staff that is underqualified...the list goes on. No one is interested in nursing anymore. When we had the shortage back in the late 80s, nursing started gaining respect, then when the market got saturated, hospitals started cutting salaries, benefits, hours etc. And now, we are back where we started from and even worse off.
On the up side, there is nothing like seeing your patient get well and the care they need. Nothing like hearing thank you from patients (although, not heard too often).
May 17, '01Would I recommend Nursing as a career? NO! what other profession can you go into where you are underappreciated, shown no respect by the client's (patient's/doctors) peers, and especially administration.
May 17, '01Originally posted by Judy D'Angelo:
<STRONG>I have been a RN for over 30 yrs - women had few options for careers. According to the American Nurse Executives poll, there are over 2 million nurses - however, only 1 million are actively working. Where did every one go? Maybe to a better paying, better working environment?! We have unwittingly created our own problem for the nursing shortage. Until the profession itself does something, we will all continue to be in this mess.</STRONG>
May 19, '01As a nursing student I feel very nervous and scared by all of this. I have researched all my options very carefully and even people in high paying jobs are miserable. I have talked to people in the computer industry they do not recommend the field just like nurses do not recommend the field. My brother and cousin both making over $70,000 in the computer field and they do not recommend the field to me or anyone else because they say people are constantly getting laid off, the work hours sometimes can exceed 70 hours a week, and they have to work many nights and weekends. People in the business field like advertising/marketing are saying the same thing. As a matter of fact my local paper did a recent survey of people in ALL fields and the survery showed that over 75% of people are unhappy in their jobs including those making over $50,000 a year. The survey also showed that over 60% of people in all fields plan to switch career tracks within the next 2 years. It is so confusing to me I don't know what to think anymore. Oh well I guess since I invested two years into school already I minus well finish my last two years and earn my BSN and if I don't like it I can always change. I am only 21 so I guess if I do not have nothing to gain I won't have nothing to lose either.
May 19, '01If you are willing and able to handle being verbally abused by doctors, co-workers, administration, patients,& patient's family members, work long hours for little pay, no breaks, not even for lunch, not receive any respect,be unappreciated,be treated like you don't have a brain, have little time for personal, family life, and lots of fights with you're spouse about all the time you spend at work, this is the career for you. I love what this job, I wouldn't do anything else, could do without the arguements with my boyfriend though. Yes i would recommend nursing as a career.
May 20, '01I've been in nursing for 24 years. I discouraged my daughter from going into nursing. I have been in Home Health for the past 7 years. I left the hospital because staffing was unsafe for the telemetry unit I charged for 4 years. Home Health is better as for as that goes but this is my first weekend off after working 19 straight days, 14 days of which I was on 24hr call. I'm salaried and we or obligated from 7am to 7pm if we are not on call. I am case managing 30+ patients, some weeks I do over 20 vists and drive 100+ miles per day. It is imposible to keep up with required documentation and coordination of care. I agree with others that nursing as a profession need to come together to improve working standards. The board of nursing in our state is wonderful at mandating standards of practice, but those standards are imposible to impliment under realistic conditions. I think boards of nursing should do more to make sure nurses are not mandated by thier administration to work under unfavorable and impossible conditions. Nurses need more political leverage if this is ever accomplished.
May 22, '01I have worked as an RN for 15 years in a variety of settings- most being in the hospital. It has always been my intention to bring compassion, appreciation and respect to my job and whatever I endeavor to do but I must say the things that nurses endure as described in all these postings are true and I certainly have felt the frustrations of this troubled profession. I have felt at times that I was entering a "war zone" in which it is imperitive to not only be constantly on alert but also ready to defend. The defending part (on behalf of my patients and myself) would be everyday on the job and leave me exhausted. I have recently discovered, however, that I posess an incredible weapon in my arsenal. It has saved me from the ravages of anger, anxiety, depression and fear. This powerful tool is possessed by all of you too: the power to say, "NO!".
"NO" is a beautiful word and can be quite liberating in this world. Of course "YES" sounds more positive but it is just what you're taught to believe.
I know change is hard so my suggestion is to make this small affirmation: "Say YES! to NO!" - it just may work for you.
May 22, '01I've been a nurse for almost five years in a high-risk labor and delivery unit at a university hospital and I love it more and more. Invariably, when I'm ready to give up (for all the reasons listed above-and more) I'll have a patient or a family who teach me once again what it's all about. I feel useful and needed in nursing. It is without doubt a high calling. I don't know anyone who is in it for the money, although you can do fairly well depending on area. Nursing offers so many different specialties, so many different experiences. But you all are so right, it's not for everyone.
I'd say if you read all the negative postings, really think about them, and then still can't get enough of your clinicals in school, you're hooked.
Even with all the administrative problems, I have never regretted one day that I spent with patients.
Jun 8, '01No, I wouldn't reccommend nursing as a career. Peaceful2100 says even people making $70,000 don't like their jobs. Well, I doubt that few of the persons in those jobs risk the potential of physical injury (lifting or moving unconscious or combative patiets up to 500+ lbs. with little help), of being assualted (by drunks,druggers, or upset family members), of risking life threatening infections (TB, Hepatitis B & C, AIDs, Meningitis, etc-since you don't know that they have those problems and if they know, they often don't tell you), or of being sued everyday they go to work and try to help their patients. A person in the computer or business/marketing field doesn't risk killing or injuring someone when they are working mandatory overtime (and I bet they don't have to) or when their department is understaffed. They don't risk being sued because they were unable to give the correct phone tech support solution to someones computer problem-even after multiple tries. We get one shot to help someone who might only a give minimal or false history, fails to follow instructions, continues to pursue detrimental habits (drug, smoking, etc) and yet we can still be held liable. I've been a nurse 20 years with my BSN. I've worked ER the whole time. I've been CEN over 18 years and have never gotten any compensation for the certification ar reimbursement for the testing. I made $6000 less last year then I made in 1994 and I work the same hours (7p-7a) full time. Since there are only 4 full time night nurses here (28,000-30,000 pts a year in our ED), we all have to work atleast one or more OT shifts. It's not really "mandatory" OT, but since the hospital will not bring in agency nurses to help and is unable to hire adequate PRN or FT nurses that'll work nights, you have to help cover your co-workers. You work one night with staffing 1-2 nurses and 1-2 techs short and you and your patients are suffering. So you try to cover each other. I've gone 3 years without a raise. I've gotten married, have a 3 year old and another on the way. Am I considering getting out of patient care nursing--YES. Believe it or not, most of the time I like what I do, I like my co-workers, and I consider myself a very good nurse. But I'm considering other options in the field, such as legal nurse consultant. I have a nephew who finished 4 of the 7 components of the MSCE certification (computers) and he started at the same pay I making after 20 years!! It's very frustrating--little recognition from administration (do more with less with no additional compensation) or patients ('why do I have to wait", "why'd that person get to go ahead of me", "you have to hurry cause I have to be somewhere (but I'll sue you if you make a mistake)" or doctors--why is it that the person making $150/hr gets to go to lunch or take a nap if it does slow down and the person making $20 who saves the patients life before the doctor can get back or be awakened and the doctor gets the credit?
Jun 10, '01Kelman: My feelings, exactly. My younger brother (without the degree) is simply doing computer "help-desk" and troubleshooting type stuff for a major communications company in California. I say “simply” because I don’t feel he knows the difference between his real work stress and physical exhaustion, compared to mine. He can basically live and work wherever he wants. His company will help him move. His income has greatly surpassed mine, and the "risks" in his profession are minimal. He's never been spit upon or physically abused for his income. He doesn’t needto keep his house and personal possessions. He's never had to run to the ER for emergency treatment for possibly acquiring a contagious disease. But yes, he hates his job right now. Although his company paid for his relocation back to a desirable southern California location, he has had enough and wants to return to the Midwest.
What he needs is balance. He needs to know the difference. He needs to suction blood from a GI bleed with an "aiding and abetting" family member hovering over you, screaming that you "are hurting him!" He needs to have gang members come back to him after failing to save another gang member whom, through choice of lifestyles, received street retribution for flashing a gang sign. He needs to weigh his $64,000 a year, supposedly high stress job against my "professional career" income of $48,000 with overtime/multiple shift work. He can depend upon continuing wage increases and profit sharing as he goes through life. I can faithfully depend upon forty-eight to fifty-two thousand a year until retirement. They will always need nurses. And we all know why.
And ya' know what the crazy thing is? I really feel that the people in ICU/CCU/Intensive care units have it WAY EASIER than the step-down, transition units. At least there is some semblance of necessity when it comes to staffing. Yeah, it's more intense. Yeah, the risks are higher for your permanent loss of income and law suits from quick decision pressures. But at least I'm only trying to satisfy one or two critical situations instead of a myriad of people pissed off about the lack of care you are providing their loved ones. And in ICU I can kick em' out when they get in the way. Sometimes the hospital will back me up. Rarely though.
Nope. I haven't gotten someone "back on-line" so they could meet a deadline to send an email. Didn't get a mouse to work, or a printer to print. Didn't get $30.00 an hour and better health-care benefits and vacation leave. But I've seen coworkers share the excitement of having their blood tested to see if they’d sero-convert. I've helped them scrub out bite-marks on their arms, and wash saliva from their eyes. I've consoled them, crying in the parking lot, worn-out and frustrated to tears. Tears induced by patients, families, managers, "all-knowing" physicians, and upset husbands because they will be late home...again.
As for me, the unholy name of "deathnurse" still strikes an unnerving cord in the spines of the unknowing. Yes, I've quasi-legally helped people to die. We’ve all done it and do it by the book. I've also unmercifully kept them alive. I'm very good at that. I've received change of shift report that was simply "He's dead," and I continued our high-priced, keep them in the unit maintenance while playing cut-rate psychologist to appease someone’s mixed emotions. I'm good at that too.
Try as I may, I attempt to not compare my life to those of others that I feel are more fortunate financially. They have the larger homes in the finer areas, the more reliable, dependable cars and health-care programs. They have an easier time planning for their family’s futures. Yeah, everyone has stress. Everyone gets yelled at for not doing something on time or more efficiently. Everyone makes decisions, some more appropriate than others. And everyone has rewards.
It's just too damned bad that the feelings you get from converting someone’s heart-rate, stopping their bleeding, or buying them more time for more invasive abuse just don't add up to much more than that--feelings. A good MD may get more out of it, but not a nurse.
They will drive the older car and live in the higher-crime neighborhoods.
Nursing has done me a favor, however. Damn it, I can do ANYTHING. I have the confidence and the in-your-face determination to yell at anyone that yells at me. If an MD that has done a procedure over and over for 20 years can’t, for one damn moment, understand that someone else may find that procedure strange and challenging, I can tell them off. And I can apologize when I’ve let something slip. And I and every nurse can always blame the system for failures. The system is set-up for that. But I will NEVER take the blame for lack of consideration of a patient’s acuity. If the hospitals want people to have better care, you buy more nurses, not more carpeting. You pay higher salaries, not build higher, empty buildings. You continue to reward longevity, experience, and knowledge, not let it stagnate.
But fix someone’s mouse, or re-boot his or her locked-up computer. They’ll respect that and marvel at your expertise. They’ll reward you with a good income. And you won’t have to get yearly injections for TB tests, wash the feces from your shoes and be followed out the door by family members wondering why you let one die.
Fixing “things” pays better money than fixing people. While fixing people may pay better in “feelings,” ‘dat don’t pay da’ rent. We have no nursing shortage. We have a shortage of nurses willing to work in these conditions. Enough already with these “be a nurse to help people” stories. If you really want to help patients and yourself in the long run, fight for more. Get in someone’s face.
Nov 14, '05I'm a fairly new nursing student, going into the profession after 17 years of working at a newspaper. I know about the odd hours and holidays and your family members saying to you "you have to work Christmas again?!" It took me 10 years to make $10 an hour and in the end never have any satisfaction of thinking your doing society any favors other than selling them something they didn't know they wanted. I know, I've heard the fallbacks of becoming a nurse, and to be honest BEFORE computers mine was an exciting job to do. I miss the stress of hands on work and my butt has grown 3 sizes to big from sitting in my cubicle all day. I guess it just depends on what make you happy, what floats your boat. When I finally became a supervisor and team trainer, it was the "helping people" part that kept me coming in the door every day. If you think that in other professions everything is rosey, think again. No, there's no know-it-all docs or family members screaming at you, but there's politics, back stabbing and an empty feeling of "what the heck am I doing with my life". Then, just when you think you're doing a great job, you find that they act as though you were never there. At the end of the day, no one gets better. Blah. Don't go into the newspaper business!!! LOL
Nov 14, '05and where does it all start? At the university level. Colleges thinking they can pay nurses less than "real professors," not give them tenor or even a living wage. Professors can make more $ on the the floor! The reason nursing is so bad is because we are not united. The MD's have the AMA...nurses have the ANA. We all know the ANA is not a powerful force because half the nurses I know don't belong. Nurses are the "sleeping giant" - everyone knows a nurse but we're either raising our kids, or have left the profession. We are mothers, wifes, fathers, husbands trying to have a life outside nursing.
So, if every nurse banded together, we would have better working conditions. But that's unrealistic. And the more nurses they are bringing to from foreign countries who are just thankful to be here are earning a living wage, the worse it's going to get (I'm not against foreign recruiting but not a substitute for solving our nursing problems here)
I left the profession after 9 years, most of which was in ICU. I loved my coworkers and miss them. But it is backbreaking work and it is hard having the life sucked out of you by family members, being understaffed, etc.
There are so many problems in nursing. I know the students who use these forums know that and are expecting it.