I love psych nursing but...

  1. I have been a nurse for 13 yrs, the past 8 I have worked in psych.
    I work in a busy psych hospital on a children/adolecent unit.

    Staffing is a major problem. Most shifts are staffed with 1 RN, 1 LPN and (on a good day) 4 MHT's. Our census stays between 40 and 45.

    Most of our nurses and MHT's have little or no psych experience, are given very little if any orientation and are expected to handle some very volitle and potentially explosive situations.

    I worked a 16 hr shift yesterday. When I got to work at 3pm the unit was in complete and utter chasos!!!!! The 7-3 charge nurse was on the phone (a personal call as is her norm) The LPN was sitting in front of a stack of charts with new orders that needed to be transcribed and the 3 MHT's were breaking up a fight between 2 patients. I wanted to turn and run!!!

    Our once reputable hospital was sold last year to a new management company and has since become no more than a "money making business". There seem to no concern that our patients are not recieveing the help they need or that our unit is not a very safe place for patients or staff.

    I love psych nursing but I just don't think I can handle the stress much longer!!!
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    About ChristyM

    Joined: Nov '01; Posts: 15; Likes: 2


  3. by   Mary Dover
    Hi Christy.
    Girl, I feel for you. I've been in psych nursing for 12 years. I can understand just how you felt walking in to a situation like you described.
    I have worked inpt as well as outpt - most recently have been full time in an outpt community mental health center. I love my job there - but lately, the stress is insurmountable. I handed in my resignation this past week - and now plan to move on to (hopefully) better things. Today, I am starting to feel more relaxed than I have in a long time - kinda like a load has been lifted off me.
    Not making any suggestions mind you - just letting you know, I can empathize.
    Do some soul searching - then do as someone told me long ago- follow your heart!