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MJeanRN's Latest Activity

  1. MJeanRN

    Is there really a "nursing shortage"

    Sure there is...if by "nursing shortage", you mean that the hospitals are requiring nurses to take on more and more patients and increase work loads without staffing much needed additional help. It's not because there aren't enough nurses to fill the positions, it's because hiring more nurses affects the bottom line. The nursing shortage exists in hospitals looking to save money. Hospitals are consistently short staffed, which has translated to the media that more nurses are needed. While this is true in some areas, it is self-imposed by many hospitals who are not willing to hire additional staff.
  2. I happen to live in a state where employers are not allowed to "discriminate" against smokers. I found out one day while reading one of the state labor laws posters. Guess it depends on how much big tobacco contributes to the local economy/government. Interestingly enough, many of our hospitals have no smoking on-the-premises policies.
  3. MJeanRN

    Anxiety over CNA course

    Calm down and breathe. :) Starting anything in nursing is sometimes confusing and frustrating. Whether it's a CNA course or obtaining your registered nursing degree, you have to realize that at some point you have to take resposibility for your own learning. I understand how you feel, and many of us have been there and felt the same way! My advice is this: whether you were told to read the book or not, read the book. It contains valuable information that your state expects you to know about how to practice as a CNA. I'm betting that the book breaks down how to do all of your skills STEP BY STEP. Also, it may contain a link to websites that may give you further information about skills. Fell free to use youtube! I cannot tell you how much I relied on youtube throughout nursing school to learn how to do something. Lastly, common sense goes a loooong way in any level of nursing. For example, would you want to touch someone else's soiled linens without gloves on? Would you want to hold clean linens against your dirty work clothes? Things like that are common sense, and I bet if you thought about it, it's things you would do whether the book/video told you to or not. I'm guessing you actually DO know how to make a bed, it's just the "critical" steps that you HAVE to get right are overwhelming you. Try practicing at home with a pillow to substitute as a resident. Knowledge is power! Read your book and do a little research and you'll be powerful! Good luck to you.
  4. MJeanRN

    Major Med Groups

    Unfortunately, you are responsible for knowing all of them, as any could be tested. However, you're on the right track with stating which "groups" should you focus on. Being able to recognize what group a particular medication belongs to will help you to identify what the question is looking for (ie: side effects, indications, teaching, etc.). Good luck!
  5. MJeanRN

    Help Help Help .. Failed NCLEX

    Cannot say enough about how helpful Kaplan was. For our program, it was a requirement to purchase it and attend the seminars, and I'm grateful!
  6. MJeanRN

    NCLEX Math..??

    Know all of the math you needed to know for your nursing exams in school.
  7. MJeanRN

    how to guide students on tele floor

    I would say it depends on the objectives. If they're anything like mine were, then it probably isn't feasible (ie, care for a patient with a trach, etc- there may not be a trach on the floor during clinicals!). I would definitely focus on the skills they're currently learning, or finding an interesting case that they can observe. Also, I totally agree with students being abused as CNA's while at clinicals. These skills are usually required prior to, or as a condition of, starting nursing school, and nursing students aren't there to learn how to give a bath. My is to let them shadow a nurse (a nurse who is willing, and doesn't mind having a student), so they get a feel of how it's done, before letting them off on their own. Then, I would give them individual objectives based on their knowledge base. Explaining to them the basis and how to formulate a careplan would also help. The best CP I ever had was the one who made sure we really "got it" at the end of the day. She went around the room and we each shared our patient's medical diagnosis, and then we etched out a careplan together, using simple, common-sense interventions (not the paragraphs in the careplan books). Good Luck!
  8. MJeanRN

    Using haldol

    If he had the Haldol ordered (depending on what the order stated: ie, prn agitation, etc.), I would have used it. Climbing out of bed at all hours of the night makes him a danger to himself. What if you hadn't caught him doing it those 6 times? Did you have a bed alarm on? Even with a bed alarm, what if you were in a situation that didn't allow you to leave to check on him? If he had fallen, would you be able to explain to his family or the physician why you didn't use a prn medication that could have prevented it? If the geri chair had the tray down, that would be considered a restraint, and you didn't mention having an order for one prior to the soft restraints. He may have been calm during report because he wore himself out during the night. Would he have had a much more peaceful experience if he would have had the haldol to take the edge off enough to rest throughout the night instead of wearing himself out to the point of exhaustion? Maybe, maybe not. The point I'm trying to make is that just because you don't believe in "heavily medicating" your elderly patients, doesn't mean that it's not necessary, or in the best interest of the patient and their safety. As far as whether or not it would have made your night "easier" so you didn't have to "run your feet off" isn't what you should be focusing on. Next time, I would suggest taking a step back and asking yourself what the pros and cons are to using the medication. What's the best outcome of giving the haldol (patient is less agitated, not climbing out of bed, and may get some much needed rest), and what's the worst outcome (haldol doesn't effectively calm the patient down)? If it didn't work, then that was something you could have passed on in report, or informed the physician about so that something different could be tried. If you had used the haldol, you may have kept the patient safe and saved yourself from possibly having to fill out an incident report. I'm not being judgmental here, as you have your own convictions for not wanting to use it. However, as I said above, maybe taking a step back and weighing the positive and negative outcomes may help you to make a more objective decision in the future. The confused elderly are a challenge, so I commend you on coming up with a creative solution. Best of luck with this in the future! :)
  9. MJeanRN

    4 days until NCLEX...what to do?

    Practice NCLEX questions, and read ALL of the rationales. Make sure you read the rationales for the questions you get right too, and why the other options weren't correct. Reading and truly understanding the rationale will help to validate whether or not your thinking process is on the right track. Best of luck to both of you!
  10. MJeanRN

    CNAs "making up" vitals.

    Just last night my tech reported to me at 0600 that one of my patient's BP was 198/86 during her 0400 vitals. I immediately jumped up and did a manual pressure and got 152/84. When I went to chart it, I saw that her comment for the 0400 BP read "nurse aware". Seriously?! Not to mention that when I came on I had to tell her to change out a small adult cuff to a larger one on a 300 pound patient to get a proper reading. Sheesh!
  11. MJeanRN

    2 weeks 20+plus Applications

    Out of all the applications I put in, the ONLY call I received was from the small community hospital the next town over. I truly believe that the reason they called was because they weren't all tied up in politics like the big city hospitals are. Where I live you have to either know someone or STALK the HR department, or both, in order to get your voice heard and really stand out. It's not that I'm against that practice, but it takes a lot of energy if you have applications at multiple locations. While I'm thankful to have the job, I know I have to stick it out for 6 months to a year before I can even think about transferring to a hospital I really want to be at. Best of luck to you!
  12. MJeanRN

    Normal to be nervous as hell?

    ^^ I almost cried! Best. Reply. Ever.
  13. MJeanRN


    Yes, your exam will be on a dummy. We were required to be CNA's prior to nursing school, and the one that I attended had us write out each skill on paper, and then in addition, the critical steps on notecards. Write them out to help commit them to memory, then keep practicing, preferably with another human (not a dummy), so they can tell you if you've missed a step. Throughout nursing school, anytime we had a skill I would also use drive time to practice. Do this just by simply repeating the steps out loud to yourself anytime you're in your car, or standing in a line, or getting through a tv commercial. Keep your common sense about you. If you freak out and freeze, just think about what the next logical step would be, or how you would want someone performing the skill on you. Practice makes perfect! Best of luck to you!
  14. MJeanRN

    Resume Question

    Thanks for the advice! It's not that I can't hold out for 6 months, as much as it's my bank account may not be able to (and to a lesser extent my sanity). It's currently a PRN position that I'm in, and I've been put on stand-by for the last 5 out of 6 days that I was scheduled to work. Mind you, that was after being promised in the interview that I would have "all the hours I need". I understand it happening every once in a while, but sheesh! A girl's gotta live.
  15. MJeanRN

    Kaplan scores on practice exams???What do they mean?

    I've always been told that above a 60 on Kaplan tests indicate passing level, especially since all of the QB and TT are considered by Kaplan to be "passing level questions" (critical thinking, analytical questions). That being said, don't focus so much on the score you're receiving, it's more important to focus on whether or not you understand why you got a particular question wrong. I cannot stress enough how important it is to read the rationale for EVERY question (not just the ones you get incorrect). Make sure you're using the method Kaplan teaches for answering your questions too. If you're getting questions wrong because of content, make sure you review it and understand it. Remember, NCLEX tests your ability to practice safely as an entry level RN. Before submitting your answers, ask yourself if it makes sense! (Common sense will take you far in life). Good luck to both of you!
  16. Mine sure as heck was! Our second year started with the instructors saying, "you got through first year, it's our job to make sure you graduate". But, each program is different. You'll be surprised how much you learned in first year that will help you in second year. The confidence that you made it there also makes a huge difference!