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A little of this & a little of that
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Thornbird specializes in A little of this & a little of that.

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  1. Thornbird

    State lpn programs to be closed...... Please protest

    The state of CT only has to make "painful budget decisions" because it refuses to institute tax reforms that would have the wealthy and corporations pay their fair share. CT is the richest state in the nation. It laso has the largest gap between rich and poor, ie, no middle class. Most towns in CT have no local police departments and volunteer fire and ambulance services. A way too large proportion of public schools are "failing". Prisoners are given early release due to overcrowding and housed in other states but more prisons are closing. The "painful decsions" cause pain only on those who work in or rely upon healthcare, education, public safety, farming or other low or non-profit service industries. The state RECEIVED FEDERAL STIMULUS MONEY TO FUND NURSING EDUCATION. WHAT DID THEY DO WITH IT? THEY CLAIMED A NURSING SHORTAGE TO GET IT BUT ARE NOW CLOSING SCHOOLS!!! The current overabundance of nurses in the workforce is due to the fact that there hasn't been a shortage of licensed nurses for many years, there has been a shortage of WORKING nurses. For a variety of reasons, number one being nursing burnout, many nurses do not stay in the full time workforce. Since CT requires no continuing education whatsoever, all one has to is send money every year to stay licensed, no matter how much a person wants out of nursing, bills to pay and no other way to pay them puts these people back in nursing. When the economy recovers, many will go back to being stay at home moms or working in other fields (there are a lot of RN's selling real estate), the shortage will be there again. Not funding nursing education is an incredibly shortsighted fix. It takes 16 months to train an LPN in CT, more than 2 for an ADN due to pre-req's. This state will be in a bind with nowhere to turn but back to the Phillipines where huge numbers of RN's were being brought from just a few years ago. I personally think turning violent criminals loose with inadequate supervision is a bad idea too along with having illiterate high school grads. The wealthy can hire private security and pay for private schools but they'll be out of luck when they go to the hospital and get lesser care due to the infamous "shortstaffing". And of course if any of those rich kids has an altruistic streak and wants to become a nurse, they can afford Yale and no worries that there are no state programs.
  2. Thornbird

    State lpn programs to be closed...... Please protest

    I doubt this is in any way temporary. The state has made life more & more difficult for LPN's over the years. Since the state currently has an overabundance of RN's, it is a step to jb security for THEM. It wouldn't be AS bad if they were just putting more resources into making ADN programs more accessible, but they aren't. Many people simply can't afford, either financially or due to personal reasons, to attend college. The state LPN programs were a godsend for them. As one recent grad I know put it, it's a life-changing experience. There are sites with up to date news and links to state officials. Try searching this topic on the WEB and I'm sure you will find more resources to fight this. I tried to post a link but found out this violates TOS. The info is out there if you look for it. This little band here is not alone! This has been poorly publicized and last minute, with little good info available. I think our state government, not just the GOV., is pulling a sneaky fast one. Nurses, student nurses and future nurses need to fight this quickly. I don't think there will be any reversal if it happens. P.S. In the long run this is bad for all CT nurses, RN's and LPN's. There are jobs and tasks well suited to LPN training that most RN's simply don't want to do. We will be looking at a workforce that is made up of RN's and "unlicensed assistive personnel". I truly believe that patients and the nursing profession will suffer for this.
  3. Thornbird

    new grad RNs.... let Gov Rell know we are STARVING!

    Try LTC, Sub-acute, Rehab, Dialysis, Home care and develomental disabilities (formerly DMR) - they are all still hiring in various areas of the state. Maybe the days are gone for awhile for fresh out of school nurses to get hospital jobs without experience first. There is no real nursing shortage, it's media hype and has been for years. However, there are shortages in areas where either 1) RN's don't want to work such as above and 2) those which require additional certfifcations or degrees such as critical care and advanced practice nurses. You could also consider relocating to the areas where there are nursing shortages, those without so many nursing schools. The Governor can't get you a job any more than she can anyone else that has spent years in college and can't find a job. Now you have to compete with all those who are entering ADN programs because the media keeps hyping nursing as "recession proof" and promoting the idea that the best job a person can get with the least amout of schooling is RN. Now we have people (and I've met more and more recently) who went into nursing only for the money and not because they care. Hopefully they burn out fast so that people like the new grads posting here who actually love nursing can find jobs. One more thing, sady, the recession has also allowed employers to go back to the good old days and treat their nursing staff like crap because now nurses don't have the freedom to leave those kind of jobs. Things will get better, the recession won't last forever (I hope) and there will be jobs again. For now, you might have to think outside the box (hospital work) and get by til you can get what you want. Best of luck. I know how frustrated you must be.
  4. Thornbird

    State lpn programs to be closed...... Please protest

    I recall in the news a couple months ago that CT received federal stimulus money to support nursing education. I suspected then it would probably not go to supporting education for those who are really the backbone of nursing - LPN's and ADN's. I have very mixed feelings about LPN practice in this state, it is unfair to begin with that programs are longer than most and the scope pf practice among the most restricted (if not THE most restrictive). The only reason LPN's have difficulty finding jobs in this state is the scope of practice making them unappealing job candidates. I attended a state LPN program in the early 1980's and the tuition was completely free then due to the nursing shortage. I really believe that I received an education comparable to ADN programs in some areas less the Liberal Arts requirements. These programs have provided LPN's with top notch training for deacades. Jobs may be harder to find now because so many nurses are coming back into the full-time workforce who worked part time or not as nurses at all. Nevertheless, once the economy is better, there will again be a HUGE number of jobs available for LPN's and nobody to fill them. I can't believe the shortsightedness of this measure. I have read that the instructors for LPN programs have a conract that won't allow layoffs, I hope this means that all who are currently attending will at least be allowed to finish. Again, let's ask the Governor WHAT HAPPENED TO THE FEDERAL DOLLARS THIS STATE RECEIVED TO SUPPORT NURSING EDUCATION!!!!
  5. Thornbird

    LPN Student worried about LPN job market

    You should worry first about completing school which you say you haven't even started! What difference does it make who is hiring now? Agencies generally do not hire new grads. The agency market for LPN's is pretty bad right now anyways. Except for doctor's offices, the pay scales usually start somewhere around $22-25 like I said. That would be anywhere in Worcester County, CT or RI. Hospitals also generally do not hire LPN's at all anymore. I do not understand what "leads" you're looking for when you are not even a nursing student yet. To the OP: Not many LTC's have HR as such. You fill out the application and usually interview with the DON. Most nursing students do NOT already work as CNA/PCT's in a place they intend to work as nurses. Nursing school is hard work and as many people as possible try to not work during school. For those who must work, shift work doesn't go very well with school schedules. There are a lot of facilities in Central Mass that have been relying heavily on agency nurses for years and are now delighted to be able to hire staff nurses. That' why the agency oultook is poor right now. Also Central Mass historically has more opening for LPN's than Boston or Springfield areas. Concentrate on your studies and rest assured, you will find a job in a reasonable amount of time after graduation. As teh economy improves it will be better. Hopefully that will start to happen before you graduate!
  6. Thornbird

    LPN Student worried about LPN job market

    There is still an excellent job market for LPN's in Worcester County. Like mot places, no hospital jobs usually available. LTC and sub-acute are still hiring. Yes, you do have to apply inperson usually. They don't want to waste their time either! Also many places have you subit credentials (license & CPR card) with application. I would say, if you're aren't TOO picky, 3 months tops to find a good job. Private doc offices, community health centers and Fallon hire LPN's fairly regularly. Starting pay lower in offices, sometimes $18-20 an hour. Other pay scales vary. For new grad, I would guess at least $22 an hour, probably closer to $25. Worcester County is a great place to be an LPN, the demand is high and there are a variety of opportunities. MA has a liberal scope of practice and there will be many learning opportunities for you as you move through your career. I have worked a good part of the last 25 years in the area. When I moved to the area was when hospitals first went "RN only" and the market was flooded with displaced LPN's, the economy was bad and jobs hard to find. I interviewed well and landed a job within 2 weeks at an excellent facility. You will do fine, as long as you get through school! Good Luck!
  7. Thornbird

    In need of some advice/guidance!

    That seems to be about average tuition. There are schools chargeing three times that. I think CNA classes can help if done before nursing school because you already have some idea of how to interact with patients before you start. Usually after you complete the first few weeks of training in LPN programs, you get a CNA certfifcation. So if there isn't a long time before you start you might as well wait. You should look into what the school's entry requiremnets are. Some now require you to take a college English & Math course before applying. There is also an entrance exam. Usually, the new grad LPN starts off in a nursing home. In some places, hospitals will hire you after that, in others hospitals don't use LPNs. But, after you get your experience then there are home care jobs, doctor's offices, etc. Regardless of what people tell you, the LPN is still a good entry into nursing for those who choose it.
  8. Thornbird

    what to do? CNA or LVN?

    I see the pros and cons to each situation. But, do keep in mind that besides the physical demands of being a CNA, which are often the same for hospital LPN's, that it can be hard to work in a job below your normal scope of practice without accidentally exceeding it. If you take work as a CNA, you're only covered for work in the CNA job description.
  9. Thornbird

    Can a LPN be a school Nurse

    In my area, LPN's can be "substitute" nurses under the oversight of the district RN or can be working in a school that has an RN also. Some of our city high schools use NP"s and then it makes sense that the other nurse(s) could be LPN's. A lot depends upon where you live, not just state, but area within the state. Schools prefer BSN nurses if available because some schools have the nurse teach health classes, etc.
  10. Thornbird

    I'm being reported to the state over a joke...

    This all sounds far-fetched for a complaint that will actually get you in trouble. But, just an FYI, the nurses station is considered a patient care area, not private. Private is the nurses break room or lounge with the door closed. The exception (and maybe this is what you have) is the stations with a "report room" in back where the door closes, when the door is closed. Anyplace a patient or non-staff can easily access or overhear is not considered private. I'm no saint either. I know that we all say things at the nurses station (especially when patients are asleep) that aren't meant for other ears. I'm not trying to criticize your behavior, it could happen to any of us.
  11. Thornbird

    Why didn't I know this?

    On the night shift, if a report comes in with any communicable disease, err on the side of caution and put them on precautions. In most facilities, either the Infection Control Nurse, DON or the Medical Director have the final say on who is and isn't on precautions. It also depends upon the site. A skin infection with MRSA that is covered by a dressing only warrants the standard precautions we always use. Many patients have "colonization" with MRSA and don't need precautions. But that's somebody else's problem to decide. You learned a lesson the hard way, but that's how we all grow :) To sasha2lady: Your patient with TB that is not active has the same thing you did. He tested positive and has to take the meds in case he has latent TB. This doesn't warrant any precautions either.
  12. Thornbird

    LPN starting pay $26.50!

    My area, CT, the per-diem pay is around $30 and regular pay with benefits is around $24 an hour. But, the cost of living is extremely high here. This is for nursing homes. Not many hospitals hire LPN's here.
  13. Thornbird

    what do you have to do when you give thorazine?

    It would probably be orthostatic BP's, lying, sitting and standing, before and after. Although check that patient swallowed it is highly important. It may indeed be the answer, if it was a choice.
  14. Thornbird

    Prior Authorization for Advanced Imaging(MRI, CT,PET)

    It really depends on what insurer, in my experience.
  15. Thornbird

    RN in Long-Term Care

    Actually, LPN's can NEVER delegate to RN's. It may seem that one when the LPN is charge nurse (or in many places they can be supervisors) but legally an RN is always responsible for her own practice. The "delegating" in LTC is by the DON who has set the policies and assignments for what nurses will do in each assignment. Each nurse then is responsible for his/her own work. In places (like where I currently live, CT) where an RN must be present to supervise the LPN, the shift supervisor is the RN responsible for supervisionm even if there is an RN working the unit with an LPN. On any given day the LPN may be charge and the RN, med or treatment nurse. Since there is lttle to no difference, depending upon locale, in the duties of a staff nurse in LTC, you may be oriented by an LPN or, especially while you are new, work with one in charge. The presence of both an RN and an LPN in any given place, does not automatically make that RN supervisor of that LPN. Of course, any good nurse looks to his/her colleagues for support. The experienced LPN may still be lacking some of the knowledge that a brand new RN has and vice versa. Remember, I am talking ONLY about LTC. I think this advisory ruling by the MA Board of Nursing is a good summation: Licensed Practical Nurse Charge Nurses/Nurse Supervisors Authority: The Massachusetts Board of Registration in Nursing issues this Advisory Ruling on Nursing practice pursuant to Massachusetts General Laws, chapter 30A, section 8 and chapter 112, section 80B. Date Issued: November 12, 1997 Date Revised: July 10, 2002 Scope of Practice: Licensed Practical Nurse Purpose: To guide the practice of the Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) who is employed and/or assigned to the functions of charge-nurse or supervisor and the Registered Nurse (RN) who is assigned to and/or employed as a staff nurse in the same facility. This is an administrative function only. Advisory: Pursuant to the Board's regulations at 244 Code of Massachusetts Regulations (CMR) 3.04: Responsibility and Functions-Practical Nurse, it states "making appropriate assignments, teaching, directing and supervising unlicensed personnel, delegating activities to unlicensed personnel, participating in collaborative planning, and making informed judgements as to the specific elements of nursing care mandated by a particular situation. The Registered Nurse (RN) who is employed or assigned to a staff position when the LPN is charge nurse or supervisor remains and retains full responsibility and accountability for the clinical course of the patients under his/her care. The LPN charge nurse/supervisor does not mean clinical decision-making authority regarding the patients that are assigned to the RN. This information is provided by the Division of Health Professions Licensure within the Department of Public Health.
  16. Thornbird

    wanting to come to conn.....need info please

    Windham & New London are a long drive from Farmington. Manchester not as bad. There is Johnson Memorial in Stafford Springs, it's a ways from Farmington but close to the MA line. You could also try Middlesex. I don't recall if they call themselves Medical Center or Healthcare System. They recently encompassed a few smaller hospitals which are operating as separate "campuses". There is one in Bristol which is quite close to Farmington. Unfortunately, Farmington is really a part of the Hartford-Springfield metropolitan area. There aren't many small hospitals, they've been "swallowed up" by the bigger fish. St, Francis still has kind of a smaller hospital "feel" than Hartford Hospital. Hartford is a Level I Trauma and St. Francis Level II. There is also CT Children's Medical Center in Hartford, if you are interested in peds. The UConn Medical Center is having problems with funding from the state & is in danger of either closing or being absorbed into Hartford Hospital. Good Luck to you.