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NurseDirtyBird has 8 years experience.

NurseDirtyBird's Latest Activity

  1. NurseDirtyBird

    Professionalism in Nursing? Yes, Please!

    I think local culture should be accounted for as well. I live and work in a liberal west coast town, where tattoos and piercings are pretty much de rigueur. I work in an exclusive facility with a very affluent clientele (read "Old School"), and I have had only one single complaint regarding my tattoos, and it was barely a complaint. We ended up having an intelligent discussion about culture and counterculture, the history and significance of tattooing, and the evolution of social norms. Other than the usual questions from the curious, I've heard nothing. I may be judged by my appearance at first glance, but it doesn't matter, as my actions and words say more about me than my body art does. I'd pick tattooed competence over a clean-cut doofus anytime, and apparently so do my patients.
  2. NurseDirtyBird

    LPN in Hospice nursing?

    Is it possible for an LPN to work in hospice care? I know that LPNs are not legally permitted to "pronounce" death, and I'm wondering if that's a big fat roadblock. I desperately need to be in hospice care. That sounds weird, but it's where my heart is. I've worked in SNFs and memory care facilities, so of course I've had experience caring for hospice patients. They have been my most rewarding experiences. I've known since my first hospice experience that this is exactly what I want to do. However, I got burned out with nursing about a year ago, and decided to quit it altogether. I even semi-retired my license and went to school to begin a new profession (yes, that's time I could have been in nursing school again, but hey, any time in school isn't wasted time). I have a friend who needs complex nursing care, no way of getting an appropriate level of care at home without daily visits and crappy health insurance that covers jack. Enter the reluctant LPN... I was in a position to help and I agreed to provide their care in their home and reinstated my license. That started a couple months ago, and it brought me back around to the point where I knew I was doing what I loved. I'm a nurse and always will be. It's a good thing to know . I feel like my duty in this life is to usher others out of theirs with the most dignity and grace possible. I want to help increase the quality of life at the end, and work towards the "good death," for lack of a better term. I want to help families dealing with caring for a loved one at the end of life. I need to be in hospice care, it's where I belong. The area where I live isn't huge, and there are only a few agencies providing hospice services around here who aren't hiring LPNs. My other problem is all the nursing (ADN) programs in the vicinity are not taking any LPN-RN bridge students. Zero. The only programs available at this point would be an hours-long daily commute. Just can't be done, especially with family obligations and working around my husband's crazy schedule. I can't do SNF anymore. It broke my spirit. So I'm unable to advance my education at the moment, sort of at a stale-mate I guess. Does anyone have any idea how I can wriggle myself into (paid) hospice work? I'm so frustrated that just when I figure out what it is I'm meant to do, I can't realize it. I'm really hoping that there's a way in that I'm completely ignorant about, and that someone could please enlighten me. I'm sorry this is such a novel, I'm hoping a little background helps explain things.
  3. NurseDirtyBird

    Odd situation

    I don't think the issue is the nurse's gender. It's the fact that a mother would willingly give up a 9-10 YO child to a virtual stranger she met the other day. It would be freaky if the nurse in question was female as well.
  4. NurseDirtyBird

    Odd situation

    There are people who post weird scenarios like this on boards in order to get a nasty thrill out of the inevitable discussion about terrible things. I volunteered for a suicide hotline at one point, and every so often we'd get a call from someone who was clearly having a good time telling us a story about awful things. It's pretty disgusting, and this story smells similarly of BS. First red flag is "I decided to make this account to ask for some opinions." They started an account specifically to ask this question, for which they want no advice? Uh huh.
  5. NurseDirtyBird

    How can I improve my reputation?

    I'm an introvert, kinda awkward and have social anxiety (amongst other things). I am not a "people person;" I got a check-minus on the "plays well with others" part of all my school report cards. But I'm a good nurse. I've never been real friends with people at work, never socialized with coworkers outside of work or anything, and I don't care. I don't go to work to make friends. If it's affecting your ability to work with the team, that's a problem. But if you're still working well enough with others and getting your job done...well, my usual thought is **** 'em. I'm sure you've heard the old saying, "living well is the best revenge." So do that. Do your job in a way that's beyond reproach. You had a legitimate reason to have walked off the floor at that time, and all the gossipy wieners can do is speculate, guess, and spread it around. They're wasting a bunch of time on that useless crap, while you're using that time to do a fantastic job and continually improve.
  6. NurseDirtyBird

    So confused, help me out please. Pre-nursing

    The community college in my area has an Associate in Pre-Nursing program. It's not nursing school, it's all the prerequisites needed for transferring to a University to enter a BSN program. Maybe your school or another nearby has something similar?
  7. You're absolutely correct. You wouldn't just take someone's word for it when buying a car - you have to test drive it to see if it's really worth it. Same thing with nursing.
  8. Amen! I too, am not a people person, and must put on my "Nursey Face" when I go to work. I never felt "called" to nursing. I felt a need for a career where I could make decent money while consistently learning and working with things that I found interesting. I also need to be challenged with solving problems. Luckily, I read medical books for fun when I was a kid, and all my friends called me "Dr. DirtyBird" when I was in high school. I've always found the human body and diseases fascinating. Nursing seemed pretty logical at the time: I had a limited amount of time and money to receive an education, getting a nursing degree at a community college would not be horrifically expensive, and two years is definitely cheaper than 4. I found the subject matter to be interesting, there's always something to learn and the job is one big brainteaser. Sounded like a pretty good fit to me. Helping people was just kind of an added bonus. I'm glad I didn't put that at the top of the list, because I find I'm helping people less and less as more and more changes in the system are occurring. If disease or injury is the enemy, then I, as the nurse, am the grunt soldier on the front lines, attempting to carry out orders and fight with inadequate weapons. We can squawk all we want about how hard nursing school and nursing is, but this isn't a lesson people can learn from others. They have to learn it the hard way. I did. Despite my carefully calculated career choice, I still wore rose-colored glasses for quite a while. I was almost completely disillusioned by the end of my first year working as a nurse.
  9. I really wish employers had the consideration to let someone know they were rejected, much less the reasons why. I can understand if you have 100 people applying for the same position that it can be a bit daunting, but HR most likely has all of those people's email addresses and could easily send a mass form letter email (with addresses hidden - it's not hard) stating so sorry, the position has been filled/frozen/eliminated/whatever. Especially when dealing with large organizations that require online applications only. There's probably a large fear of litigation if someone says the wrong thing when asked "Why wasn't I picked?" There are all sorts of wrong answers possible there, but "We've decided on another candidate," really leaves nothing to sue over. I once went through the interview process, background check and all for an organization, and when they didn't get back to me after a couple of weeks, I wrote them off. THREE MONTHS LATER, they call me and ask if I'm interested in a position. Uh, no. I already have a job, because I can't afford to wait for three freaking months to get a paycheck. I've also had radio silence after an interview and it drove me bonkers (I'm already bonkers, so it wasn't hard, LOL). I'm convinced there are a lot of bosses out there that don't have appropriate HR training in dealing with rejected applicants, so they lack the confidence to appropriately notify them. Or maybe they're just jerks and it's not worth wasting time on. I don't know. But I do know when you're desperate for a job, that kind of stuff can drive you batty.
  10. NurseDirtyBird

    Anyone been asked inappropriate interview questions?

    What in the world does this have to do with anything the OP was talking about? If you have such a bias against LTC nurses, perhaps it would do you some good to walk a mile in our shoes. Let me help: (This is for the majority of LTC facilities - I know some are different) 1) Our patient load can be up to 50 patients depending on the shift. 2) We are required to administer medications, perform treatments, assess, chart, call MDs, take orders, coordinate referrals on all of these patients. 3) Many of us do not have charge nurses to pick up some of these tasks. 4) We do not have respiratory therapists, code teams, or IV teams. We are responsible for these tasks ourselves. 5) We have a limited amount of medications available for emergency use. Some have on-site pharmacies, but if they do, they're not 24 hours/day. Places like assisted living facilities may not even have that. 6) LTC/SNFs are the MOST LEGALLY REGULATED facilities in the country. And you thought you had it bad. Our legal requirements and restrictions keep us from doing a lot of things, and that's what sends these patients to you. 7) We are unable to provide emergency care beyond the basics. We do not have a doctor on staff to make emergency decisions and assist. We provide first aid, or CPR and off to the hospital they go. Not because we don't want to help, but because we CAN'T either by law or policy. In some places, like assisted living, we can't even raise someone's HOB up, because they're not in hospital beds. So respiratory distress goes straight to the hospital. 8) We have an incredibly high turnover rate of nurses and CNAs because the work is exhausting and the stress can kill you. We've had nurses have heart attacks at work, one had a mental health crisis in the middle of her shift, a few losses of consciousness because of dehydration, back injuries galore, and instead of 7 patients that might gripe and moan and try to physically injure you, we have 20. 9) Families are ubiquitous. They are there all the time (we don't have "visiting hours," they can visit any time for however long they want), and they are usually mad about something we have no control over. 10) We care for hospice patients, ortho patients, neuro patients, dialysis patients, ARFs, ARDs, COPDs, dementia, CHFs, S/P CABGs, S/P pacers, SBOs, ostomy patients, TPN patients, non-healing wounds, immunocompromised patients, communicable diseases, psych patients, etc. There is no such thing as an "ortho floor" or whatever, so there is no specializing. We get all kinds of patients, and since hospitals are sending post ops to us before the patient even farts, we are providing acute care to 20+ patients. Give us a freaking break.
  11. Hey, guess what? This is every SNF everywhere. And hospital. And clinics. Good luck. Deal with managing people's pain, demanding patients and doctors who throw pills at people who won't shut up, or find another profession.
  12. NurseDirtyBird

    Bullied nurse. I quit. :(

    There's a difference between constructive professional criticism and bullying. Constructive criticism details what you did wrong, how you can fix it, and how to avoid it in the future. You learn something. You learn absolutely nothing when nobody will tell you what you did wrong or how to fix it. The OP ASKED for professional criticism and was given nothing but "Oh I can't remember..." They were being penalized for a mistake nobody knew about. When the OP asked what they could do better, the manager had nothing to say. Negative feedback just for the sake of being negative, and not for improving the receiver's performance is pretty much bullying. Sure, we only get one side of the story, but it's impossible to get the rest of the story, so we must take the OPs word for it.
  13. NurseDirtyBird

    That certain odor on some patients and their visitors

    This is horrible! Have you considered making judgements of people by their personality and character instead of their looks? I'm a freaking atheist and I still completely agree with Jesus on this: "Let he who is without sin cast the first stone."
  14. NurseDirtyBird

    Mental Illness Can Be Terminal

    This was intended to be some insight in the mind of the suicidal person. I'll be happy to tell my story about the realizations I had while coming out of that deep depression if you'd like. Much of it was realizing what kind of lasting impact my death would have on my family and friends.
  15. NurseDirtyBird

    when patients are prescribed marijuana

    I've had a couple MS patients with authorizations. Family brought in food made with added cannabis, no smoking involved. We were able to D/C Ambien because they were able to sleep well as a result of cannabis use, and we saw less PRN muscle relaxant use for spasms. Doctors in this state are divided on the topic. Some believe it can do a lot of good, keeping people off of habit forming opioids and other drugs, and others treat medicinal cannabis users like junkies.
  16. NurseDirtyBird

    Mental Illness Can Be Terminal

    I chalk that up to the difference between sympathy and empathy, lots of people don't know the difference. I believe they mean well, but have no emotional interest in the issue. There's an interesting video that explains this.