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Will you work during a Pandemic?

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by Goju Goju (New Member) New Member

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Nurses, would you go to work during a Pandemic?

  1. 1. Nurses, would you go to work during a Pandemic?

    • No
      1925
    • Yes
      5592
    • undecided
      1288

8,805 members have participated

Ruby Vee has 40 years experience as a BSN and specializes in CCU, SICU, CVSICU, Precepting & Teaching.

11 Followers; 65 Articles; 170,084 Visitors; 13,914 Posts

yesterday in clinical one of my classmates said that if a big pandemic hits, nurses without children should work 7 days a week to staff the hospitals, and nurses with children should be excused from working. she said this looking at me, knowing i don't have children. i had to control myself to not say something vulgar.

unfortunately, that's a common attitude. i've also heard that nurses without children should work all the nights, weekends and holidays, too, so that the parents can be home with their children. to which i say "you chose to have children; you chose to work in a hospital. step up and deal."

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2,275 Visitors; 94 Posts

Yes, I would.

First, I'm not independently wealthy and would have to work.

Second, I've learned to take care of myself. Though not invincible, I would rather work with what I know rather than what I don't. I worked primarily with patients with active pulmonary TB for a year and my TB skin test didn't convert.

Third, at the moment, I'm working as a school nurse. I feel super-exposed to everything in that setting. There's little equipment, no proper access to handwashing and you're looked at strangely if you decide to use what's there.

If I were working with people with the Swine Flu, like in the early days of HIV/AIDS, you know what you know. It's what you don't know that trips you up.

Just my opinion and I welcome yours.

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HippyGreenPeaceChick has 2 years experience and specializes in ER and Home Health.

2,744 Visitors; 183 Posts

I do not have a respirator, nor do I particularly feel like giving into the overbaked drama and carrying one with me. I am young, fit, very healthy. I eat well, rest well, take my vitamins, and drink lots of water. Am I invulnerable---NO. However I trust my health enough to take care of myself.

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1,316 Visitors; 9 Posts

seems kind of cowardly to me to not.

nurses will be on the front line of STOPPING the pandemic. if 30 percent of the work force just stayed home, that will be crippling to the healthcare system. what modern hospital these days does not stock plenty of PPEs to deal with a crisis like this and protect it's workers. who will stop the pandemic if the nurses won't?

isn't it honorable to rise to the spirit of the challenge and do that which you are trained to do.

maybe that's too cavalier, but come on. if you don't care about the people you work for and on enough to respond to them in their greatest hour of need, then maybe you are in the wrong industry.

just some controversial thoughts.

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ktwlpn specializes in med surg,homecare,hospice.

30,544 Visitors; 3,844 Posts

We had a nasty norovirus this winter and staff and residents alike were pooping their guts out.We were really unable to enforce the quarantine-every time some stoopid visitor/significant other called the admin with a complaint they were allowed to come in.And staff continued to be pulled from unit to unit depending upon need. It just went on and on .If we get this flu it's going to be oogly..We have plenty of food-I am going to get some extra pet food tomorrow.

Years ago during a bout with flu I took an anti viral.I was still as sick as a dog and had vertigo with the med on board.I went back to work a day or so sooner then I normally would have-got there,got dizzy and passed out while transferring a fresh amputee....Won't do that again...

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cardiac mama has 5 years experience and specializes in telemetry/oncology/icu.

1,272 Visitors; 11 Posts

I agree with you 100%, as nurses it is our job to help especially in times of need and emergency situations. It's what we do everyday, however, we really do have to have some PPE who knows maybe we will invent some new ones, and just protect ourselves as we try to protect those around us.

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rockenmomRN specializes in Tele.

3,395 Visitors; 158 Posts

admin note: we just added a poll to this thread today, april 25, 2008, please take a second and vote in the poll so we can have a graphical representation of the responses. thanks

scenario:

h5n1 (the bird flu) mutates to become efficient at transmitting human to human causing a pandemic, with a case fatality rate of 60% and with 80% of the cases in the 0-40 year old age range.

see:

http://www.wpro.who.int/nr/rdonlyres/fd4ac2fd-b7c8-4a13-a32c-6cf328a0c036/0/s4_1113.jpg

hospitals will be quickly overrun. hospital staff shortages are 50%. the government orders all nurses to work. there is not enough personal protection equipment (n95 masks, gloves, goggles, tamiflu, vax, etc)

home quarantines become common (in the fed plans).

your family is also quarantined in your home. you are running out of food and the government promises you will be "taken care of" if you report to work.

will you go?

do you guys really believe that it is our responsibility? and let me clarify, if i see an accient on the road, i'm the first to pull over. if there's a really hard assignment i'm the 1st to jump in. but the scenario presented was would we go to work if there wasn't adequate ppe. i don't think its our responsibility to go work in a dangerous environment and potentially bring home something to our families/loved ones.

i believe that if you decide to go to work in a pandemic situation, great. but to say its our responsibility or duty is going a little too far.

i agree with what a previous poster said, i went into nursing to care for people (in addition to job security, schedule, and money) not to die for them. just my 2cents.

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Over-the-hill-Nurse has 21+ years experience and specializes in pediatrics, geriatrics, med-surg, ccu,.

5,440 Visitors; 89 Posts

I would work. After the 9/11 episode, many areas developed a response group that are first responders during a disaster, pandemic, etc.. I am part of a group that formed for a 5 county area here. In just the community I live, we have emergency supplies that were purchased and kept in secured buildings for such epidemics or disasters. I would hope that many other communities did the same thing. If not, then maybe it is time for more areas to develop the same type of responders and supplies. If interested you can find out information online about the Medical Reserve Corp (and also sign up as many more responders are needed). They also offer free training for such events. The HHS Panepidemic Plan that was formed in 2005, spells out the plan for such events, and hopefully this plan will not be needed in the case of the Swine flu. Info can also be found by checking out US Department of Health and Human Services or by checking out the PandemicFlu.Gov site online. It isn't just about me and my family but also the community I live in. I have never thought about not helping.

Edited by Over-the-hill-Nurse
added info.

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541 Visitors; 4 Posts

I took an oath as a nurse, Yes, I would work but with the proper PPE.

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4,105 Visitors; 239 Posts

No PPE hmmmmmmm let me think about that. Hmmmmmmm I am still thinking....Let me think about that for awhile and I'll let you know. Well if I knew ahead of time there was no PPE I could always stop at the pharmacy and get some to take with me... I suppose I probably would go for the people... not the government.

TuTonka

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4,105 Visitors; 239 Posts

I would work. After the 9/11 episode, many areas developed a response group that are first responders during a disaster, pandemic, etc.. I am part of a group that formed for a 5 county area here. In just the community I live, we have emergency supplies that were purchased and kept in secured buildings for such epidemics or disasters. I would hope that many other communities did the same thing. If not, then maybe it is time for more areas to develop the same type of responders and supplies. If interested you can find out information online about the Medical Reserve Corp (and also sign up as many more responders are needed). They also offer free training for such events. The HHS Panepidemic Plan that was formed in 2005, spells out the plan for such events, and hopefully this plan will not be needed in the case of the Swine flu. Info can also be found by checking out US Department of Health and Human Services or by checking out the PandemicFlu.Gov site online. It isn't just about me and my family but also the community I live in. I have never thought about not helping.

Would you please post numbers to these places for anyone interested? I certainly would be one of the new signees of I knew more about this.

Sincerely,

Tutonka

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5,827 Visitors; 426 Posts

I stopped at the pharmacy on the way home. The Lysol was out, the hand sani out, and the masks were out. Another large pharmacy has all their masks on backorder. Eek.

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