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LibraNurse27

LibraNurse27 BSN, RN

Community Health, Med/Surg, ICU Stepdown
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LibraNurse27 has 7 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in Community Health, Med/Surg, ICU Stepdown.

LibraNurse27's Latest Activity

  1. LibraNurse27

    Gender discrimination in pay

    Hi all, this week a male colleague who I oriented disclosed to me that he makes more money than me. Our hospital has ten "steps" in pay. I was hired as "beginning level" since that is the post I applied for (but had 4 years experience) and started at step 2. I move up a step each year, so now I'm on step 4. Recently my boss hired 6 new male nurses, and they were all hired at step 9 or 10, "advanced level". I think the positions they applied for specified advanced, but they all have 1-2 years of experience. They get paid about $24,000 a year more than I do! I have 7 years of experience now and I train all the new hires. We investigated further and found out all the female nurses are hired at lower steps. A few talked to our boss. She says she can't jump us up the steps, we just automatically move up once a year. All she can control is the step we're hired at, which I guess is related to the job posting we applied for, and somewhat to her discretion (unclear). Many suspect she favors male nurses. All our male coworkers are wonderful, and even joked they will do all the heavy lifting to try to make up for it. They are willing to help us talk to HR and disclose their pay. Does anyone have any recommendations? I thought my salary was fair until I found out about this. I don't want them to make less, I just want equality. Thanks all.
  2. LibraNurse27

    Sweating in those covid gowns!

    Hi all, Just wondering how you get your confidence back when you feel off your game. My unit is so short staffed and covid is exploding. I feel like my skills are not as on point as usual. I'm usually good at ultrasound IVs but lately I've been missing more than I get! I couldn't get the last female foley I tried, and gave up, asked for help. Now I'm so nervous all the time, praying no one will ask me to do an IV and none of my patients will need a foley or NG or anything. Today I was doing an IV on an obese, swollen intubated covid patient, sweating in my gown with my face shield fogging up and making it hard to see the screen. It took me three tries and I felt so defeated. Pt was sedated so he didn't feel it, but it just sucks. Then on to an adorable 90 yr old lady but also obese and swollen, tried twice and gave up! How is everyone else coping with the extra shifts and extra stress? Has anyone had an off couple of weeks and recovered?
  3. LibraNurse27

    Do Black Nurses Have a Different Experience?

    Thank you for sharing your story!
  4. LibraNurse27

    Do Black Nurses Have a Different Experience?

    I am white and one night a patient refused to be cared for by my coworker who is black. She insisted she "needed a white nurse" so I volunteered to swap with him. I went to the room and said, "I'm so excited you want me as your nurse! This is my first day out of school and I really need to practice drawing blood!" LOL But on a serious note I obviously can't comment on the experience of black nurses but I will just say I have seen the racist attitudes of patients, coworkers, managers, administration toward them. I hope this forum can be a place for black nurses to share their experiences and be met with listening, not push back. Right now is the time to listen without getting defensive or arguing back
  5. LibraNurse27

    Assisted "falls"

    Hi all, just curious if at your facilities assisting a patient to sit on the ground to prevent them from falling is considered a fall? T I went to RRT on inpatient psych. Pt very sedated and weak. I was getting labs when she said she had to pee. There was a nurse and tech in the room. I said we should get a bedpan because getting her up wasn't safe. She was throwing her legs over the side but I think we could have redirected and they were both strong guys. They said they knew her and she would never use bedpan. I suggested bedside commode but they don't have commodes. They got her up and walked her to the bathroom with a lot of assistance. The nurse left the room, leaving me and the tech to help her back to bed. I wanted to get a wheelchair but he was already helping her stand up. While I was pulling up her pants she got too weak and started to fall. We assisted her to the floor very gently to sit down. No injuries and she got back to bed safely. Is this a fall? I'm so upset because if she were my pt I would never get her up. I tried to advocate but I felt out of place since it's not my unit and I was just there for RRT. I felt intimidated disagreeing with 2 men although they were both nice. I'm upset that the nurse left knowing it would be hard for me to help get her up (she was a large pt) and that the tech started getting her up without making sure I was ready. Basically I'm annoyed with the whole thing but mostly annoyed with myself for letting it happen! I know pt is fine though. I would like to suggest they keep commodes on psych or get training on fall safety but I don't want to overstep. Their unit has a high fall rate and this pt has called 4 times this month, one where she hit her head but CT negative.
  6. LibraNurse27

    HIPAA violation?

    Hi all, Today a bunch of nurses on my unit (including me) had to talk to our manager about a possible HIPAA violation. Last week we had a "high profile" patient from the jail. He was in the news for a fascinating/horrible crime that he committed. Everyone in the public knew his name and the details of the crime. But the hospital he was at was not public knowledge. When he came in his chart wasn't flagged as one that limited people can open, but later in the week it was. When he came in he was lethargic and had 2 officers in his room so he was not a 1:1 for nursing. The house supervisor decided mid-shift that he had to be a 1:1 because of what he had done. Didn't make sense to any of us but she insisted. We didn't have enough staff and we had to keep taking turns doing the 1:1 while people took breaks. I had to sit with him for a bit so I opened the chart and looked him up. A lot of other nurses did too because we were trying to figure out why he needed 1:1 since our staffing is already not great. Long story short management thinks we opened the chart to snoop. All of the "juicy" info is on Google, so I don't think anyone was doing that. They asked each of us for an explanation of why we opened the chart and since then no news. I don't think they would fire so many people, but you never know! One nurse was fired last year for opening her friend's chart when he was in the ER so I know it's possible to be fired for HIPAA. No one "leaked" the info about him being in our hospital or told any of his medical info the the media. What does everyone think? I am so worried!
  7. LibraNurse27

    Leave of Absence?

    Hi all, has anyone taken a leave of absence from work and come back? My hospital has an option to do this. An employee can request up to 12 weeks of leave for any reason, even just to take a mental health break. At first they use your accruals and then unpaid. As I mentioned in other posts I have bipolar disorder. It is well managed with support groups, therapy and meds. Right now no support groups due to covid. Some older coworkers retired early when covid hit. Some are off because they are high risk, others to care for kids. We try not to assign covid pts to older nurses, those at high risk due to health conditions, nurses who have had chemo, those with young kids or elderly/high risk people at home and pregnant nurses. That leaves me and a few others to do covid all the time. I understand and don't mind but it is scary to be constantly exposed. That's not what makes me want to leave though. After 4 yrs I'm burned out on seeing sad cases everyday; young pts dying because their bodies are ruined due to substance abuse, the effects of poverty on health, large men in alcohol withdrawal screaming and hitting us, IVs and foleys on violent patients, verbal abuse from patients, etc. All of this plus the isolation we are all facing has taken a toll on my mental health. I am starting to have symptoms I haven't had since I got treatment: severe depression, mania (without psychosis), seeing things that aren't there, suicidal ideation. All of this is in my personal life, never at work. I think I could get FMLA from my psychiatrist or take the personal leave but I am scared it will affect my job, especially if I admit to the mental health part. Anyone done this or have advice? Thanks so much and sorry for the depressing post.
  8. LibraNurse27

    Stop Hating on Psych Nurses

    Hi all! During covid19 my hospital received funding from the government to cross train RNs to other units in case of a surge. Mostly it's been Med/Surg, PACU, OR training to ICU and Stepdown. I've been training a lot of people! Our manager asked who from Stepdown wants to train in ICU and picked a few people who have been in Stepdown for a while and were interested (not me!). I've been going to inpatient psych to help with covid pts. I like it! Their manager asked me to cross train. I'm excited to train but my coworkers are laughing at me and about how everyone's going to ICU and I "got sent to Psych". As if ICU is superior. They're asking why I want to go there, it's no skills, "why do I want to deal with those people", it's just babysitting. Most don't know I have a psych issue so it's insulting on a double level, to me personally and to psych nursing in general. Psych nurses are amazing and help people in need of compassion as well as treatment. I like seeing people go from hallucinating, depressed etc get better with meds and therapy (although I know it's not always butterflies and rainbows!) It gets me down to see my patients cycle through substance use, withdrawal, go out and drink/do drugs, come back, etc. without addressing the root of the problem. Has anyone faced this situation and what can we do to combat it? All areas of nursing are important
  9. LibraNurse27

    Questions for med/surg nurses. (school assignment)

    I'll answer it since I'm sheltered in place LOL but check with your instructor first if online forum is an OK source 😃
  10. LibraNurse27

    Official PPE

    We wear full PPE in the tent, except when we are just the "gatekeeper" asking screening questions (from 6ft away) we don't have gown and gloves. We are wearing a surgical mask all day (one per shift) in every pt room/hallways, etc. Rule outs and positives, full PPE (with N95, PAPR, whichever you use). You should be using airborne precautions for rule outs in case they are positive.
  11. The way they treated you is terrible. My hospital is a county hospital so not sure if that's why but for any employee who contracted the virus they don't question whether they got it at work, and let the employee stay home until they are fully recovered while receiving full pay. They have given every single employee 144 extra hours of sick time to use as needed for illness or even just mental health. Granted we haven't been hit hard by the virus. But if you are still pretty sick/weak I don't think they should not expect you to return to work. There is not even enough long-term research to determine when the virus stops being contagious. Some of our covid pts are still testing positive weeks after symptoms resolved. Infection control says they are likely shedding the dead virus and not contagious anymore, but they can't know for certain due to lack of long-term studies since it's a novel virus. Maybe you can look into FMLA or workers comp although it won't pay your full salary. I don't think it should hurt your chances of getting a new job as long as you explain the gap in employment. I'm sorry for your situation and I hope you feel better soon.
  12. LibraNurse27

    Home health nursing to bedside

    If you are moving to an area where there is a high demand for acute care nurses I’m sure you will be able to find a job, especially in Med/Surg. Just be wary of bad ratios and research the place, ask questions! Many skills from home health transfer into acute care, like wound care, PICCs and IVs, pt education, etc. I think also be clear in your interview that you’re not planning to use the job as a quick stepping stone to an advanced practice role. I have seen some managers wary to hire nurses with advanced degrees as bedside nurses. Some say they wonder why someone got the degree if it’s not necessary for the job or worry that they will look down on other nurses or not be receptive to being trained by people with lower degrees but more experience. Not my opinion, just what I have overheard. I’m sure if you give clear answers and explain your plan in the interview you will do fine. Do you know if the area you are moving to needs acute care nurses and what the ratios are like? Wishing you good luck 🍀
  13. Bringing back this thread because I took 3 attempts to get an IV in today and felt horrible. I usually only try once or twice but today no one else who is trained with ultrasound was working and patient really needed an IV. Luckily she had been my pt before and she likes me so she was very patient! She is rule out covid and I was swearing in a tiny isolation room wearing a plastic bag as a gown... yeah! first time I was right in top of the vein and the machine turned off! Had to withdraw needle, get other US machine. Second attempt was in vein but wouldn’t thread. Asked patient if it was OK to try again and she said “I believe in you!” And got it 😁would never have tried again if there was anyone else! Thanks for listening to my unnecessary anxiety
  14. LibraNurse27

    Covid-19 Testing Criteria

    Hi All! I am a stepdown nurse and was sent to the “tent” today (literally a tent where we are stopping people to screen for covid19 before they can go to ER). My job was to ask every patient coming to ER if they had fever, cough and shortness of breath. Those who answered yes to any question went to the tent (6 ft away from each other with masks) to be seen by a doctor and swabbed as needed. Non acute patients sent home to self quarantine. Acute patients sent to ER with masks to wait for results and determine need to be admitted. Per cdc guidelines only symptomatic patients were being swabbed, no taking into account chronic illnesses/risk factors. I am in CA Bay Area and we have a shortage of test kits so we can’t test everyone. My question: one young woman came in for an abscess on her arm. No fever, shortness of breath or sick contacts. When I asked about cough she said “I always have a cough because I have asthma”. I asked if any new/current cough and she said no. She was not coughing in the tent at all. I sent her in to regular ER since screen was negative but still gave her a mask, even though masks are only for pts who screened positive. My gut feeling was she should be swabbed since she has asthma and “always has a cough”. I checked with ER charge RN and he said I did the right thing, but I am worried! Any thoughts? Thanks!
  15. LibraNurse27

    Unreasonable Risks are not part of the job

    I would hate to refuse to treat a patient, but if it really came down to it I would not want to care for a patient with covid19 without any PPE. If I got infected I would most likely not get sick as I am young and healthy but I would be quarantined and unable to care for any patients, or die! And I might spread it to others. But I really don’t want to ever have to make that decision. We need PPE now!
  16. Hi Ruby, I would say don't give up before you try! It's good that you have a job and income while you study and take the NCLEX. Focus on the positive that it IS possible to get a job in OB but it may take time and may not be easy. A few options would be to move to an area where they will offer you a new grad job, get experience and move back home (or stay there if you like it!), or apply all around your area, network etc. Give yourself a time period, keep working your other job, and if you reach the limit and don't have a job in OB, if you are willing take another type of nursing job that will give you relevant experience, get the experience and re-apply. There are non-hospital OB jobs in clinics that provide prenatal and postpartum care and newborn care. I worked in a primary care clinic and learned tons about OB... non-stress tests, fetal heart tones, pregnancy emergencies, ultrasounds. It's not the same as helping someone give birth but it is relevant experience for sure. Lots of options! I hope something works out and you can achieve your dreams.
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