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RebeccaJeanRN's Latest Activity

  1. RebeccaJeanRN

    VA experiences

    I work in a VA ICU. One of the tough things is that it seems that virtually EVERY patient has drug/alcohol/smoking history so its all failed livers, kidneys, COPD. The shocking thing for me personally was the young age of our dying patients. These men are dying from their lifestyle choices in their mid 50's. So sad. (Oh, and morbid obesity is another one. At any given time we have at least a couple of 400-500 pound ICU patients)
  2. RebeccaJeanRN

    Uniforms.. color scrubs vs whites

    I agree in part, yes we should introduce ourselves, but mixed up and sick patients will still think that the janitor who comes in wearing scrubs is a health professional too, if not an actual RN. Same for anyone else in scrubs who do not introduce themselves. And for 'what does that say about ourselves'? I do think that nurses need to think about appearances, but the mix you describe is same everywhere...in all walks of life, some women wear unflattering clothes, unflattering hairdo's, too much jewelry, and so on...its not just related to nurses. All it screams is "I have bad fashion taste" and all it reflects upon is the person wearing "last night's" makeup & hair. I used to be in the 'special color' for nurses school of thinking, but now I've changed my mind (that's what I get for forming an opinion before I was a working RN). Now I vote just for nice large name tags, or perhaps the idea of a sewn patch on scrubs which say RN. My rationale: 1) about one color just for RN's: unless every other department stops allowing scrubs, and unless nurses can't accessorize with other color jackets and sweaters, confused patients will never keep the colors straight so issuing a special color for nurses is a moot point 2) about scrubs in general instead of a uniform for nurses: scrubs in general are comfortable and nurses of old who work starched white did not work 12 hour shifts. 3) scrubs are inexpensive and can go right into washer and dryer numerous times, most of my other clothes can't and we all know that nurse's scrubs cannot be worn a second day without laundering- EVER!!! 4) about the color white: white scrubs get wrinklier and show more general wear and in a 12 hour shift are more likely to be speckled with tiny reminiscents of the patient care we provide all day and which I have to confess that I'm happy not to see until I go home and wash my print top... and lastly 5) about spongebob and Betty Boop: I think these are appropriate in Ped's but not in adult ICU. But then again, I really don't care all that much if a co-worker happens to prefer cartoons to Hawaiian flowers. The patients don't ask us what we think about THEIR taste in clothes, so we don't need their approval about ours. All that should be required is that we show up with a set of fresh clean scrubs, and without truly unprofessional stuff like rings through our lips (that can look shocking/scary especially to an elderly patient) ready for our shift! (but I DO like the idea of special and larger name badges or perhaps a sewn on patch...even if patients can't really read them, others can.
  3. RebeccaJeanRN

    Desperately need NIGHT SHIFT ADVICE!!!

    Hi everyone- I'm starting on night shifts in two weeks and although I am middle aged, I have never worked a night shift job of any kind- what kind of advice can you give? I am desperate for any tips/tricks/warnings!!!! (If it helps to know, its ICU that I'll be working in.) ALL advice (from how to keep up good health and weight, to specifics on what nursing issues to expect) would be SOOOOOOO appreciated!!!!!!!!! (also your own experience stories from when you first transitioned to nights would also be most appreciated!) Thank you!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  4. RebeccaJeanRN

    Lunch and Dinner Breaks

    Campbell's now has some great soups in microwavable containers- and that, plus a fresh piece of fruit, makes for a fine lunch. Also- do you have Trader's Joe by you? They have wonderful little meals, both fresh and frozen, for micowaving, and one-person prepackaged salads and such. One stop at the beginning of the week should take you several days into the week!
  5. RebeccaJeanRN

    Does your hospital have an RN "uniform"?

    Hi everyone- I just learned that a local hospital went to a uniform for their RNs and that another one is planning that change in the future. So I wanted a current status from everyone: does your place of employment require a nursing 'uniform' or a specific color scrub? Are they planning any changes? Please describe what you are required to wear and the type of hospital you work at (private, county,VAMC, etc.) and the State you work in! Thanks! (Just a word of warning: please don't make others nuts by turning this into a discussion of whether you agree with RN uniforms or not- or if you like white for nurses...there are plenty of other threads on that and its a HOT topic :angryfire - don't want to re-visit that one, just really wanted to find out the current trending right now in each of our States!)
  6. RebeccaJeanRN

    How to say thank you?

    I like sending a personal card of thanks...to TWO people: that instructor plus whoever she reports to or who runs the program. Thank her very warmly but also specifically (e.g. "I really appreciated the extra time you invested to see that we all understood patient care, and the role modeling of quality care that you personally provided..."). This written note is likely to be something that she will keep FOREVER and cherish, more than an email (because it can be put in a memory book and looks better). And the second one to her superior is designed to give credit where credit is due. Everyone loves hearing from 'above' how much you were appreciated or what a great job you did. Enjoying genuine and well earned feedback and praise never gets 'old'...people who teach LOVE it and live for it. So I do hope you make the time to actually DO it and how nice of you to think to!
  7. RebeccaJeanRN

    Is there power in the color white?

    I posted in here once before in agreement to white again, as singularly reserved for nurses, but of course not old fashioned starched dresses, hose & caps...and there was an avalanche of disagreement in reply. The problem that I see with other colors reserved strictly for nurses is keeping the color coding for scrubs (which EVERYONE wears) straight in any given hospital. But if you can consider this website as a microcosm of general opinion, the overwhelming majority of nurses would never go for it. So we are stuck with being mistaken as just anybody else in the hospital, forevermore. And don't tell me that one's professionalism will set you aside. That may be true after someone witnesses a professional exchange, but before that happens, your typical hospitalized grandma will still think housekeeping is their nurse, and even new residents won't know if an RN is a CNA or a LVN or Resp Therapry, etc...
  8. RebeccaJeanRN

    Strange post-partum behavior...

    Yes, this is not normal behavior. This is a pseudo pregnancy, I've only read about this in the news or in books, but its the type that people imagine so much that their bellies even grow. Pregnancy is the time when people get lots of attention, and the sudden transferring of all that attention from mother to baby after birth, is an adjustment that causes some mothers to feel 'down'. This mother however is past the typical postpartum months, so she must be very lonely. Babies are great to love, but rarely do they fill the mother's need to FEEL loved and important. Maybe, if you can spend more time with her, you can encourage her to get some help (and can find out where she can go for it for little or no cost, if she doesn't have insurance).
  9. RebeccaJeanRN

    should i buy a new sethescope?

    I used to think I was hard of hearing, or stupid, because I couldn't hear much with the cheaper stethoscopes and didn't pick up on certain sounds. So I bought a littman and then I could hear the patient breathing in the next room when I put it on. OK, maybe not exactly, but some things in life are worth every penney. For me, there really WAS a difference. Now that I don't feel deaf anymore, if just I can figure out how never to feel stupid...THAT would be the OTHER instrument I'd buy in a hurry!
  10. RebeccaJeanRN

    Advice Please! A cna spread a rumor about me.

    Since your fellow student was acting in role of CNA in the capacity of the hospital, then really (and you seem to know this now) you should have spoken to her supervisor if you wanted to address it. But here is the problem: all you have is heresay (plus some common sense telling you that she HAD to be the source of rumors), so you really would only be 'reporting' an opinion that this person said something (unless someone else is willing to stick out her neck in support). I just think that you made too much of it. Are you going to call everyone who ever says anything bad about you? Most of us would be on the phone 24 X 7... :uhoh21: Anyway...if no greater risk than insulin was your exposure, then I'd count my blessings that I didn't have a bloodborne risk as well and consider this a valuable lesson. Just thinking...is it possible that the real problem is that you are mostly just embarrassed and ticked off to have had a witness, who happened to be a not-so-nice blabbermouth as well ? I agree that she is an annoying little (big?) twit for talking about you, and it always irks me that all this gossip stuff is a part of nursing school, but I say live & learn and laugh as much as you can. Sometimes the more you make of it, the worse YOU look...that's one of the ironies of life. But an ever-present sense of humor and constant attitude of professionalism & kindess will ensure that you survive all the annoying little twits out there!
  11. RebeccaJeanRN

    NICU Burnout...need to cry

    Besides offering cyberhugs, I really can't think of how to support you at this very draining time...I just wanted you to know that I'm listening and care. And that I just feel it in my bones that you are such a blessing to your babies. Please keep venting here- many others in here care too!
  12. RebeccaJeanRN

    Mom & Dad were right: I'm a screw-up

    Anybody who can get a 4.0 in pre-reqs is a pretty smart guy, as simple as that. So since you are so smart and hardworking, you'll catch on to what you need to do in nursing school to get the grades you want. You may have to re-think a 4.0 as a goal, but no reason you can't do VERY well once you get the hang of it! I think of very well as B+ to A- , but everyone has a different idea of what constitutes 'very good' in nursing school...be kinder to yourself. The start of nursing school is the very toughest, its so unlike everything before it. You WILL do better once you figure out the ropes- hang in there!!
  13. RebeccaJeanRN

    Is it Just me or is school too easy?

    Maybe its just me, but I think its just you.
  14. RebeccaJeanRN

    Bad, Bad Incident. Can you refuse to work a particular unit?

    I don't believe you can refuse to work on an 'unsafe unit', because thats heresay. In other words, its really only rumor that its unsafe (albeit a rumor that appears to be based in fact). In theory, a nurse can say that about any unit she didn't like (that she 'heard' that the unit is not supervised well, that there is dissatisfaction among nurses, no peer support, risky patients, etc.) So...you probably need to just get the heck out of that place. I believe that is it a liability claim against your license just waiting to happen. Explore your options about not floating anymore, just in case any exist. If no options at present place of employment, then work somewhere, anywhere else. The quicker the better.
  15. RebeccaJeanRN

    What do I do? (long)

    Here are my questions: if you are a charge nurse over this person, and you said it would be very easy to catch her at what she shouldn't be doing- then that means that you see it all the time and never did anything before about it. Is that because you are in the habit of not enforcing rules that you think are trivial or dumb? Also- if managment tells you to catch her at this and and write her up, are you saying that they are noticing that which you have chosen, thus far, to ignore? And insisting that you enforce all rules and not play favorites with this nurse? Are others doing what she is doing too? If she is the only one, and its a dismissable offense (I don't care if its as simple as cussing in the hallway), then I don't see why you have waited until mgmt insisted for you to enforce the rules. But if its some rule that NOBODY pays attention to anymore, then you can't enforce it with just one person or you'll have a problem. And now for a possible solution: Perhaps the real dilemma may be that you chose to ignore her flaunting of this violation of a rule up until now. I remember reading something in a law article once that if a violation of a rule has been accepted repeatedly, without any enforcement of the rule, that one can argue that the tacit understanding is that the rule no longer was in force. In other words, someone doing something for a very long time, especially if others do it too, and it obvious for all to see that there have never been consequences, would have a legal argument in her favor. Perhaps you ought to go back to management with this discussion. What is recommended in this instance is that everyone get reminded of the rules and that they will be enforced henceforth, even if never in the past. And then it must be enforced always from that point on and for all. This may be your 'out' with this nurse, and a way to save face plus her job. Good luck!
  16. RebeccaJeanRN

    NICU Burnout...need to cry

    Oh, I'm so sorry to hear this. But not to worry about finding just the right words for the baby's mother. What speaks more clearly to this mother than any words is simply the fact that you did all you could plus you cared. What mother could ask for more? When little ones have to suffer and die, I agree with you...it is truly the worst of our world.