What are some prominent issues for new grads to be aware of in nursing?

Nurses Activism


I'll be starting a position as a new grad in a couple of weeks. I'm just wondering what the big issues are that I need to be aware of that are affecting nursing. I do know about the shortage, but, what else is going on?

passing thru

655 Posts

Redwing: I guess this is one for the moderator of this forum who does a real impressive job here.

And I am impressed with your ambition.

In the beginning, your co-workers don't expect you to be aware of nursing issues, especially on a national level.

In the beginning , I think it is enough just to concentrate on

orientation and learning how to integrate & apply all that knowledge you have learned in the past few years.

Good Luck.


559 Posts

Will do. Got enough on my plate in the beginning anyhow.... but I guess I just want to gain a better understanding of the why's and wherefore's for use at a later date. Thanks for your input and well wishes.

allnurses Guide

Spidey's mom, ADN, BSN, RN

11,302 Posts

Have to agree with Passing Thru . . . focus on learning and expanding your fundamental nursing skills.

Keep hanging around nursing sites and conversing with fellow nurses.

And keep in mind we come from all walks of life and all political stripes. Which may help explain why there is no one unified voice for nursing. How can there be? Maybe that is the #1 thing to keep in mind.

I admit to being very surprised at the political climate in nursing. And I had no idea regarding the way the government and senseless regulations hamper good medicine.

I've been a nurse for 5 years now. Keep your focus on being the best patient advocate you can.

Best wishes,


There is no doubt a nursing asso. in your state. Contact them about recent issues. Our state Board has info online as well. Relax and learn. And congratulations on finishing school. What an accomplishment!


4,491 Posts

If you don't already have a job I suggest talking with staff on the unit you are considering. Try the cafeteria at meal time (do the nurses get a break?) or change of shift.

Ask about your orientation. Try to work the same schedule as your preceptor. Ask if you can change if you are not comfortable.

Never bluff, ask for help and advice.

Ask about staffing and floating while they are trying to hire you. Take notes.

Read Policy and Procedure manuals so you know the rules.

Read your Nursing Practice Act if you didn't in school.

Here are some links for your state:







2,099 Posts

Specializes in Corrections, Psych, Med-Surg.

Here is something to always keep in mind:


327 Posts

Sjoe, you are so right!


2,709 Posts

Good luck to you! For your own knowledge, and personal professional growth, first, stop by and browse your state nurses assoc website to see whats going with nurse's issues where you live. Join it and get involved. That involvement could be as much as particpating on a statewide committee or as little as sending an email to oppose or support state legislation that will affect nurses there. Its completely up to you how involved to get, but being a member of your state nurses assoc is the best way I know of to keep on top of the issues.

For whats happening with nursing issues on a national front, visit places like this website and also the American Nurses Assoc website:


For nursing issues at your state level, see: http://www.aznurse.org/default.asp?PageID=10000647

Something interesting is happening in Arizona lately:

Hospitals voluntarily sign pledge to prohibit forced overtime -

3/27/03 Arizona Nurses Association (AzNA) Officials announced today that over 50% of the patient beds in Arizona are now represented by hospitals who have "Signed the Pledge" for Voluntary Mandatory Overtime Prohibition.

The number of participating hospitals who have agreed to prohibit mandatory overtime in their facilities continues to rise. Ask YOUR facility whether or not they have "Signed the Pledge" yet. Please see the news and information page of this website at http://www.aznurse.org/default.asp?PageID=10000648 for detailed information on how you can advance this effort which is sponsored by the Arizona Nurses' Association and Arizona Organization of Nurse Executives. Our hope is that by improving the conditions in our state's hospitals we can make Arizona an attractive place for nurses to work.>

For your employment, when you go on interviews, remember to interview the hospital - not just have them interview you. Ask about their medical benefits, pensions, RN staffing levels, patient ratios, levels of support staff, and if you will be required to work forced overtime. Also, look at not just the salary they offer but also the level of benefits and pension. Some facilities may have a little lower starting salary but much better medical and pension plans. Weigh it all when considering which job to accept. And dont be like so many of us who didnt think not having a pension mattered 'cause we were only 20 years old at the time and pensions were the last thing on our minds. Now we're 20 years older and realizing we worked all that time & have nothing to retire on.


2,099 Posts

Specializes in Corrections, Psych, Med-Surg.

"Arizona Nurses Association (AzNA) Officials announced today that over 50% of the patient beds in Arizona are now represented by hospitals who have "Signed the Pledge" for Voluntary Mandatory Overtime Prohibition."

So clue me in. What is "voluntary mandatory overtime?" Sounds like a contradiction in terms.


2,709 Posts

LOL!! You missed the most important word! Its "Voluntary Mandatory Overtime PROHIBITION". Apparently, hospitals in Arizona are signing a pledge to VOLUNTARILY prohibit mandatory overtime at their facilities. That idea is a lot better than making their nurses go on strike trying to force them to prohibit it. So far the number of facilities that have made the pledge to voluntarily ban their practice of mandatory ot comprise more than 50% of Arizonas total number of hospital beds. Sounds like some hospital administrators in some states at least are beginning to get the message. I wonder what the implementation date for this voluntary ban is going to be.


559 Posts

Guess I'd better check that one out about the overtime deal. I do know it's a hot issue. Thanks for the tips. I passed the NCLEX and am packing for my much-needed vacation. I'll check out the state board site and keep stuff in the background. The foreground? Well, you know where I am. I've got much to learn.

Thanks again.

This topic is now closed to further replies.

By using the site, you agree with our Policies. X