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Content by LadysSolo

  1. I will work full-time till Medicare eligible, then 4 days/week till age 70, then per diem. I have pretty good savings, I have (roughly) $3000/month available, and my house will be paid off before I am 70, but my family tends to be long-lived so I will need more than average. No long-term care insurance (depending on the plan I understand it can be a scam,) but I plan to die in my house anyway. When we built it, we built it handicapped accessible, so I can stay here forever (when we built it my elderly in-laws were living with us, they have since passed.)
  2. LadysSolo

    CNAs sleeping on the job... What can I do as a new nurse?

    When I worked 11 - 7, you were permitted to nap ON YOUR BREAK (because it was YOUR break,) but after your break you were to be up and working. Perhaps approach it as "Break time is over, this needs to get done now." But I agree, since you worked with them, it's likely to be a difficult situation.....
  3. LadysSolo

    Help! I feel like I made a mistake

    You worked on a step down neuro unit so you knew what you were getting into, so I don't think it's nursing (although I could be wrong.) But rotating shifts is very hard on the body, there have been studies done (can't quote one off the top of my head though, but you could look it up if interested) and that may be part of your discouragement. I would try to get on a unit where you don't have to rotate shifts until you get your feet under you (so to speak) as a nurse, and then maybe go back to neuro if you really enjoy it.
  4. LadysSolo

    Can I be a nurse with a bad back?

    I hurt my back 28 years ago catching a patient who was falling, I was an RN at the time, declared permanently partially disabled, and still work full time. I became an NP 13 years ago due to believing I can assist with moving and turning patients for exams part of the time but all day every day I would likely not have been able to work until retirement. So depending on the nature of your back issues, I would say "yes." I would try to look for a facility where minimal lifting is involved, or maybe look at pediatrics (patients are usually smaller.)
  5. Never ever work without malpractice insurance - it is money well spent, so you can have the lawyer take care of issues like this. I (thankfully) have never had to use it in 36 years, but at (about) $100/year, and an attorney is about $500/hr, I am glad I have never been without it - I have paid for about 7 hours. And you did NOT abandon your patients.
  6. LadysSolo

    New Background Checks in Colorado ?

    In my state if you are working with vulnerable populations (the young or the elderly) you have to pass a Federal BCI, I wouldn't be surprised if Colorado started this.
  7. LadysSolo

    What is the hardest shift you ever had?

    There were so many working in the hospital, one of the weirdest was when I was a new nurse, and listening to a patient's lungs and doing an apical, and the heartbeat stopped. I thought "this isn't funny," and then realized what had happened and called the code. The operator asked what room I was in, and I just hoped the room # on the water pitcher was correct, because that's what I told her. The lady lived another 24 hours and then died. Another worst I had was when I was doing agency to pick up some extra money. It was my first time in the facility, and I had 48 patients plus a new admit with two STNAs. That night really sucked, and then the oncoming shift was angry that I didn't get the over 20 blood sugars all done before they got there, was over about 30 min getting them done. Good times!
  8. LadysSolo

    Be honest: do you feel valued by your employer?

    NotReady4Prime's post reminds me of a comment I made about my one employer being named "one of the 99 best employers" in the particular area. I commented that there were only about 99 employers in the area!
  9. LadysSolo

    Smallest gauge for blood draw?

    I worked oncology, and after several rounds of chemotherapy, if the patient refused a port, often the largest gauge you could get in them was a 24. Blood infused fine, and sometimes we were pushing the limit on how long blood could hang, but it worked. I worked as a vet tech one summer, and dogs and cats have HUGE (for their body size) veins in their front legs! I was stunned how big they are.
  10. LadysSolo

    Duty of care? Opinions please

    Many of my patients I see in home (in fact all of them, actually) have told me not to knock (I do the first time) and just to come in. They know when (approximately) to expect me. If I would go in and find one of them down I would follow CPR protocol (establish pulselessness/breathlessness and call 911, etc. if appropriate.) I of course know their CPR status. If they are a DNR/CCA and have arrested, I would follow their wishes.
  11. I think Assisted living and home health aides should be covered by Medicare - cheaper than SNF, and many people don't need SNF but can't afford self-pay for AL or home health aides daily. I also agree with universal health care at a basic level for all (preventive care in particular - "we won't pay for PT but you can have all the drugs you want,") and if you want to pay for additional you can, and I agree no "satisfaction surveys" for reimbursement (I couldn't have morphine for my hangnail, so you get poor survey results.") And outcomes to base reimbursement on - PLEASE! GET REAL! Until a way can be found to allow me to force my patients to do what I recommend, despite educating until I am blue in the face, PEOPLE DO NOT LISTEN UNLESS THEY WANT TO!!! I have entirely too many "fix me in spite of myself" patients.
  12. LadysSolo

    Crushing Oral Medications...New Regulation

    They are trying to accomplish the nurses being sure what meds the resident is refusing, which I get. But they are going to accomplish the residents refusing all the meds, or if they take their meds, refusing their meals (which are more nutritious) because they are full of applesauce or pudding. Then you will have a weight loss, which will require more supplements, which will further reduce the amount of meals taken, etc, etc. I think any regulations should come from someone who has actually had to work in LTC.
  13. LadysSolo

    Flaming Hot Cheetos are NOT a health food choice!

    Sorry, I LOVE Flaming hot Cheetos, but I can eat Habanero peppers and only think they are warm. I love hot food, but just wait till one of your students puts contact lenses in after handling these peppers (and I speak from personal experience - forgot I had handled them, as I had washed my hands - the oil is persistent!) The pain is excruciating, but it DOES go away after much eye watering!
  14. LadysSolo

    Right to Refuse

    I have had to explain to PCPs in the past that a LTC facility is the resident's home, and just like a home in the community, if the resident wants ice cream, pancakes with maple syrup, whatever, they can have it and we have no right to stop them (unlike the hospital where if it is not ordered they cannot have it.)
  15. I have chronic pain, and I use chiropractic once a month, ibuprofen and acetaminophen if I need it in between, and am very active. I believe, however, that most people would react very negatively if providers suggest alternatives to opioids.
  16. The "shadowing nurses" idea was done at one hospital where I worked. The hospital board wanted to cut staff, and we asked if one of the board members would follow one of us for a day before they made the decision. The board member made it for 4 hours, and said "there will be no cuts - I don't see how you do it with the staff you have!" A success in my opinion!
  17. LadysSolo

    Messed up bad.....

    OHRN2011, there is light out the other side. I too am in Ohio, and I have worked with two nurses who have completed the program. Both were still under restriction, but able to work. One was able to work in a NH but not pass any controlled meds while under restriction, the other worked as an STNA in a facility while under restriction, so at least both were able to work. You did it, so you will have to "do your time," so to speak, but you can do this!
  18. LadysSolo

    Should a nurse suggest a different doctor?

    You have to be VERY careful in how you do this. For example, I had a patient one time who had surgery, and it was done rather poorly, and the post-op care was very poor. I suggested to the patient that perhaps her PCP should be aware of the surgery, and perhaps she should make an appointment. The PCP had a fit about how the wound was looking, and fixed the problem, without me making comments about the surgeon. Issue handled diplomatically!
  19. LadysSolo

    Accidental Pill Pusher

    BTW, I do understand chronic pain. I have a back injury, and for the last 27 years I have lived in chronic pain (5 to 6 on the pain scale) every day of my life. I have accepted that this is my normal, and continue to work every day. On days when it gets to 7 or 8, I take two Ibuprofen and two acetaminophen 500mg, and it brings it back to a 5 or 6. I am lucky that I have found something that works, but to say that opioids are required for chronic pain is not true.
  20. LadysSolo

    Accidental Pill Pusher

    In the clinic I used to work in I had a 16-year-old come in because he had been to the ER a couple of days before and gotten Percocet for his sore throat, and wanted more. Physical exam negative, sent him home to do warm salt water gargles and use throat lozenges. THIS is how addiction/abuse starts!
  21. LadysSolo

    Desperate for advice

    Sounds like you are being treated like an agency nurse. Quitting by phone or e-mail is very bad form, and the LTC market (at least in my area) is small enough that everyone knows everyone, so it can make it hard to get another job if you quit that way. I get what you are saying, I did some agency nursing in my past, and it can be like you said, but it CAN get better as you get more sure of yourself. I can only recommend getting in early enough that you can get the med cart organized, and in relatively short time you will have seen all the areas of the facility and will feel you can handle anything! Good luck to you! It DOES get better!
  22. LadysSolo

    Nurses and bullies...

    In my experience (32 years) I have found physical therapists to be bigger "bullies" than nurses, although passive-aggressive. In one facility they were the only ones permitted to cut tubigrips for the patient, they refused to do it. I had a patient who needed diabetic shoes, and they refused to order them because the patient would not do what they wanted in therapy. I have had physical therapists tell me what MY job is (sorry, I know what my job is, do yours,) and be so snotty to me I nearly punched one of them. In most places I work, the therapists think they are "God," their therapy time takes precedence over anything else the patient needs ("I have two more minutes of therapy I have to do!") Really? The patient needs to go to dialysis. Or needs an x-ray. Or needs to go to the bathroom. Or whatever.
  23. I became an NP partially because in my 40s (after 23 years at the bedside) I decided I physically could not lift and turn people for 20 more years. There was never enough staff to get help with moving larger people. I now plan to return to the bedside in another few years, I have discovered a proliferation of better Hoyer lifts, sit-to-stands, etc. and I believe it is possible again.
  24. LadysSolo

    My trip to the ER

    Oh, much worse - I ignored it until it went up my whole forearm. (I tend to not take very good care of myself.)
  25. LadysSolo

    Quitting Your APRN Gig?

    traumaRUs and grad2012RN, these are all involved in why as soon as I am Medicare eligible and no longer need my employer insurance, I am going back to the bedside. My one employer (in the past) had never had an NP before, and re-did everything I did (to be fair, he did the same thing to other MDs in the practice.) Currently, my gripes are: the NPs in the practice I am employed by make $25,000 less/year than other NPs in the area, and we are continually having to cover when someone quits and the practice is unable to hire another NP, no appreciation, and the biggest gripe is the computer program we have to use is NOT user-friendly, and in addition to the 8-hour+ day, the paperwork takes another 4 to 6 hours/night. So after Medicare eligibility, I will take the pay cut and go work 4-8 hour shifts (knowing full well it may actually be 9-10 hours,) I will be done at the end of the day.

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