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Educating the public on what nurses do

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Kunle Emmanuel
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Educating the public on what nurses do

Unread post by Kunle Emmanuel » Wed Sep 23, 2015 4:43 pm

Nurses weren't the only ones offended by the comments — big-name advertisers Johnson & Johnson and Snuggle quickly pulled their ads from the show, and others followed.

Though the show made an attempt at damage control with a segment on nurses during Friday's show, the PR disaster shows that all of us— Behar and Collins included — should learn more about what nurses do. Here, nurses from around the country share what they want you to know.

1. Yes, we do wear stethoscopes — because we use them.


Nursing is an art for Renee Schieferstein, a registered nurse at a New York City doctor's office. "It is a balance between the art of caring and medicine, science, and technology," she says. Though a nurse's role originally was to give bedside comfort, the job is now much more complex: it requires knowing how to do a variety of medical-based tasks.

Kati Kleber, a registered nurse in a Neurosciences Intensive Care Unit in Charlotte, North Carolina and author of popular nursing blog NurseEyeRoll.com and the book "Becoming Nursey", breaks it down.

"We know how to read telemetry monitors, how to administer and monitor patients receiving vasoactive medications, start IVs, which medications are appropriate for which conditions and which are contraindicated," says Kleber.

And that's only the beginning.

"It's much more than just following around a physician, doing what they say, or giving bed baths and feeding patients."

2. We never forget our patients.


"Many, many patients leave handprints on my heart," Sarah, a registered nurse who works with kids, teens, and young adults with cancer at a Cleveland, Ohio hospital.

She recalls a patient who didn't speak much English. "Most of our interactions were in pantomime," she says. When the patient cried during a blood transfusion, Sarah sat with her and held her hand.

Later, the patient's English-speaking son told Sarah how much it meant to his mom. "That was at least 10 years ago now, but I still think about her," says Sarah, who requested to be identified by only her first name.

Schieferstein once drew blood work for a young patient who had just tested positive for HIV.

"I remember thinking that I wished there was more I could do for him, and so I asked him if he would like to talk. We ended up having a really great conversation about his feelings," she said. She was also able to educate the patient about his diagnosis and tell him about resources available to him. "I feel that I was able to offer him some comfort in this very difficult moment in his life."

Can you raise my son? Hospital nurse answers mom's prayers

3. We shed plenty of tears.

Nurses also feel the loss of a patient.
In sad moments, Sarah tries to hold back tears until she is away from patients. But when one family came to say their goodbyes to a teenage boy dying from cancer, she couldn't help herself.

"I was in the room giving a medication through his IV and cried along with family. I remember his grandma saying to me something like, 'Yes, my baby is worth these tears. We know your heart is breaking, too.'"

Mel, a registered nurse in a New Jersey ER, recalls a tough day managing two ICU patients shortly after finishing up her orientation.

"I remember at one point just standing in the med room crying because all I kept thinking was that their lives depended on my ability to keep them going," says Mel, who also requested to be identified by first-name only.

4. We're working even when we're off the clock.

Studying doesn't come to an end when nurses get licensed.

"Medicine is constantly evolving. Practices are constantly changing," says Kleber. In addition to completing a certain amount of education to maintain their licensure, nurses must stay up-to-date at their facilities.

Often nurses come in on days off to do online education modules about new procedures.

4-year-old cancer patient "marries" her favorite nurse

5. We've seen it all (and we're not judging).

A good day for Mel? "When I come home wearing only my body fluids!"

A 12-hour shift can get dicey. "There have been days when I've had patients rip out their IVs, vomit all over the place, even after giving them a bag, defecate on themselves despite the changing I did five minutes prior, or even miss the urinal when they couldn't ambulate to the bathroom in time."

But it's all part of the job, she says.

That matter-of-fact attitude should reassure patients who worry nurses are judging their physical flaws or personal habits. And it helps nurses put patients at ease when they're being asked sensitive questions.

"There is a way I can ask, 'Do you or any of your partners use IV drugs?' that sounds just like I am asking 'How is your day? Or what did you have for lunch?'" says Schieferstein.

Because getting the truth out of patients is crucial to know their health history.

It goes without saying nurses see plenty of nudity.

"Trust me, we've seen so many people naked we don't even think about it anymore," says Kleber.

6. We wish we could do more for you.

Nurse holds elderly patient's hand

Sitting with a patient or comforting someone can be difficult when caring for multiple patients.
There's really no downtime during a shift, says Kleber. Nurses can get everything done as long as nothing unplanned happens — and that's rare. "You're constantly prioritizing and re-prioritizing. It leaves little time for you to sit down, go to the bathroom, and eat something yourself."

The nonstop pace of caring for multiple patients means "sitting with a patient or family member to talk, comforting someone, playing a game with a kid in between treatments," can be hard, says Sarah.

When a shift ends, energy is long gone. "I find myself extremely exhausted at the end of the day and I often feel guilty that I don't have the energy to give to my family when I get home," says Mel.

7. We love what we do.

For Schieferstein, every day is a reward.

"I feel so fortunate that I get to do what I do every day. That I get to go to a job that I love, and am incredibly passionate about."

And while some would find working with cancer patients to be heartbreaking, Sarah considers it a privilege. Nurses become an extension of a patient's family and support team.

"Some of my happiest moments come when I see a kid start to perk up after a treatment and realize that I was part of the team that helped them feel a little better," she says.


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Re: Educating the public on what nurses do

Unread post by Matron Ben » Fri Oct 02, 2015 3:25 pm

Tell them oo

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Re: Educating the public on what nurses do

Unread post by Kunle Emmanuel » Mon Oct 26, 2015 11:31 am

NURSES CARE for individuals, families and communities, ensuring that they attain, maintain, or recover optimal health and functioning. She also ensures peaceful death when it is inevitable.

Nurses are capable of assessing, planning, implementing, and evaluating care independently, and in collaboration with other care givers with the use of their care tools, e.g. Nursing Process, NANDA, NIC&NOC, etc. Nurses are patients advocate, they spent more hours with their patients, caring and coordinating care activities. They are at the center of patient care in the hospitals and the entire community. They use clinical judgement to protect, promote, and optimize health, prevent illness and injuries, alleviate sufferings, and advocate Healthcare for individuals, families, communities and populations.

Florence Nightingale, is the most influential figure in modern nursing and she defined nursing as "the act of utilizing the environment of patient to assist him in his recovery" . This is what we do as nurses, it is not same as what the quacks does in most privately owned cottage hospitals where both the trainers and the trainees have no knowledge of what it takes to be a nurse. Most times they use these set of people for selfish gain to minimise cost and capitalised on people's ignorance of their right and lack of knowledge of who should be called a nurse.

NURSES MAY PRACTICE IN THE FOLLOWING PLACES:

Clinic, Cruise ships, Hospice facilities, Hospitals, Industries, Long term care facilities, Military facilities, Pharmaceutical companies, Private homes (personal home care nurse) , Retirement homes, Old people's homes, Schools, Camps, Emergency/Rescue missions, as Consultants in health care, legal or insurance issues concerning health etc. Nurse can work full or part-time depending on work schedule and time. Nurses can offer different ranges of health care services apart from working in the hospital settings. For management of your aged parents, company staff, schools children, Church/mosque members, bed ridden relation or Convalescence patients, consult a nurse.

NURSES ARE GREAT MANAGERS OF HEALTH CARE FACILITIES AND EQUIPMENT, ANY COUNTRY MAKING A HEADWAY AND SOARING HIGH IN HEALTH CARE DELIVERY GET THEIR NURSES INVOLVED IN POLICY MAKING AND ADMINISTRATION. THEIR NURSES ARE WELL REMUNERATED AND RESPECTED, THEY ALSO HAVE MORE NURSES IN HEALTH CARE FACILITIES THANKS DOCTORS AS OPPOSED TO WHAT IS HAPPENING IN SOME REFERRAL HOSPITALS LATELY IN NIGERIA. THEY ALSO TRY TO MAINTAIN THE WHO STANDARD OR AT LEAST GET CLOSE TO IT, WHICH IS "A NURSE TO 4 PATIENTS" MUST HOSPITALS IN NIGERIA OPERATES AT THE LEVEL OF A NURSE TO 30PATIENTS, SOME HIGHLY PLACE GOVT HOSPITALS OPERATES AT 2 NURSES TO 30 PATIENTS.

This is the reason why our rich people, politicians, people in authority and have assess to public fund travel abroad to enjoy state of the art care, which are most times rendered by Nigerian Nurses frustrated out of the country, but practicing in America, Europe, Germany, Canada, etc. It is high time we accord nurses the best regards, renumeration and recognition, for they can do better and will serve better if given the opportunity in a conducive environment, nurses are pregnant with great potentials, Nigeria health care managers should allow them to deliver living and progressive ideas. We are in the Era of Change, we need change in the health sector, especially in the way we place nurses in Nigeria. If President Obama can listen to Nurses in USA, why will President Buhari not listen directly to nurses in Nigeria without committing our agitation and yearnings to the hands of committees who are already bias and never wish nurses well from inception?. Nigeria Nurses Need the attention of The Federal Govt and the entire populace. This is just one of the series to enlighten my friends on this platform. I am indeed sorry for taking much of your time.

Thanks for reading.

Olufemi Iseyemi Folakemi
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Re: Educating the public on what nurses do

Unread post by Kunle Emmanuel » Wed Dec 30, 2015 6:26 pm

We do not enter nursing to make a lot of money. They don’t enter nursing for power or stature. It is not a glamorous profession. As nurses, we frequently do our jobs in the background and unnoticed by the public. We perform our duty in a routine, quiet and unobtrusive manner. We did not earn a degree in Performance Arts, where every excellence is measured by applause. We earned our degree in Nursing, a profession of quiet selflessness and service to mankind (read unsung heroes). It’s not complements from one’s manager, or others that keeps us going as professionals.

The reward

It’s that feeling you get when you’re driving home after your shift. The feelings that you know you have done the right thing for your patients. You may not have rescued them from a critical situation, but you left them better off than when you came. Your care achieved for your patients: Safety, cleanliness, comfort, the absence of pain, being at ease emotionally, and able to handle another day in the juggernaut of today’s health care environment.

This is the feeling that puts you at ease!

This is the feeling that tells you, you have done your best!

This is the feeling that nourishes your soul!

This is the feeling that sustains us all as nurses

…And, it’s something they can never take away from you!
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Re: Educating the public on what nurses do

Unread post by Kunle Emmanuel » Tue May 03, 2016 2:15 pm

If you asked a registered nurse what they did today, they might say:
“I showed a new mother how to care for herself and her baby,”
“I spoke to a teen about how to handle stress,”
“I led a team planning a patient’s discharge from hospital,” or
“I explained to a father about the ICU machines keeping his daughter alive.”
Every day, registered nurses face the good, the bad, the miraculous and the heartbreaking — with unwavering knowledge, expertise, care and compassion.

How do they do it?

Ask a registered nurse.
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Re: Educating the public on what nurses do

Unread post by Kunle Emmanuel » Thu Jul 07, 2016 9:35 pm

Nurses are patient's advocate.

Nursing is different from medicine. We have different job description and calling. Though some are interwoven. It is not weakness on the part of a nurse if she refused to do certain procedures, it is just that in health care delivery, there is division of labour and a well trained personnel will stay within her scope of practice. No other professional can perform the duties assigned to a nurse effectively more than the nurse herself. This is the reason training of unqualified people for sheep labour should be discouraged and resisted by All Nigerian.

Nursing is a profession, it is not an offshoot of any other profession, The entire society should please be informed that nurses are not receptionists as been portrayed in some cottage hospitals. We have definite independent and interdependent roles we render for our clients and patients, without which they cannot experience wellness or total deliverance from illnesses.

Respect nurses, because they are your advocate. Great, articulate, dedicated, and immaculate nurses.

I throw way salute o!

Olufemi Iseyemi Folakemi
Nigerian Nurses lighting up the world one candle at a time.

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Re: Educating the public on what nurses do

Unread post by Kunle Emmanuel » Thu Jul 07, 2016 9:41 pm

For hospitals to thrive, they need to value nurses

Three weeks ago, I changed jobs. I left a high-tech, high-volume teaching hospital in one of the largest medical centers in the U.S. for the greener pastures of a small, private community hospital. Why? I needed a less stressful position, lower acuity patients and to be rid of the madness of commuting.

I am a registered nurse with experience in emergency and trauma nursing, critical care, electrophysiology and cardiovascular surgery. I was offered the position after a 2-hour conversation with the director of critical care. We had a meeting of the minds and were in agreement about many topics related to patient care, integrity in our profession and clinical advancement. We discussed the hospitals nascent cardiovascular surgery program, the current climate of the unit and accountability.

I’ve had a few weeks to settle into my new position. Some important pieces of this narrative to note are: I am working in a hospital with less than 100 beds that is privately owned by a group of physicians. The unit where I work is growing a cardiovascular surgery program, so we are caring for patients that are not overly complicated. The intentional selection of these patients increases the odds of excellent outcomes. Good outcomes without complications are harbingers of success; they ensure reimbursement and generate referrals.

Two days ago, I was speaking with my director and the CEO walked over. His icebreaker was a comment about my tiny nose stud.

“Hey, you’ve got something on your nose!”

Needless to say, as I sat there in my regulation scrubs embroidered with the company logo, my nails trimmed and unpolished, my small stud earrings and my neatly styled hair, I was dumbstruck that this was the one thing he had to say to me. I didn’t even know how to respond, so I said nothing. He did not ask how my new position was working out or if I had questions or concerns. I wish he had: There were nurses on the unit who had three patients (The AACN staffing ratios for critical care are 2:1.)

The next day my assignment included a critical patient that required 1:1 nursing care (for at least a few hours) and the two patients I had the day before. Not a big deal right? The other two patients were stable. One was going to the OR for a procedure, and the other was told conflicting information about his plan of care from various providers. The first patient’s spouse was the type of person who required a particular level of attention. The second patient was a linear person who had a genuine need to know what the exact plan was. The third patient was critically ill, required time sensitive lab draws, interventions, medications, and nursing care.

So, here is the crux of my sordid tale. The nurse that night had done less than the bare minimum. The required labs were done, and medications were given per protocol, but critical labs that should have been initiated and completed were not.

Oral care was not done. This is important for many reasons. One of which is avoiding ventilator-acquired pneumonia. Another reason? The patient’s front tooth was fractured during intubation, and her mouth was full of dried blood. She did not have a gastric tube and was in danger of vomiting which can lead to aspiration pneumonia.

I don’t believe this patient was ever repositioned. She was found “down” at home and had an area on her buttocks that pale and cool. The previous nurse did not place a barrier on it for protection or reposition the patient off this part of her body to prevent further damage.

The patient was in restraints without an order; there was no sedation or pain medication ordered. The nurse did not notice that urine and sputum cultures we not ordered and had administered antibiotics. The patient had multiple infusions going through unlabeled lines that were in a state of disarray.

I want to blame this nurse, but I cannot. She had three patients, and this patient was critically ill. Also, I am sure that she had another admission and possibly moved another patient out. She was stretched too thin.

The bottom line? I assumed that working in a small, private hospital would allow me to practice the art and science of nursing to the standard that patients require. The reality is that the epidemic of poor staffing and doing more with less exists in the private sector as well. This problem has an impact on everyone in health care.

I was reading Better by Atul Gawande MD this evening. He talks about the frustration of having his hands tied, and the difficulty in executing his vision of high-caliber patient care. He addresses staffing shortages as a looming obstacle in a particular surgical case. My takeaway is this: Physicians experience the same frustration as nurses. They want to leave at the end of the day knowing that they didn’t just “fix” a problem but that they made a connection with and had an impact on another person’s life.

That’s all we want: To feel good about what we’ve done, that we did our best, that our patients and families felt our authentic presence and concern.

Our patients and their families recognize this. They feel it. If I am not overburdened my demeanor is more relaxed; I have time to answer questions, to be present, to understand both my patient and their family, to notice subtle changes in my patients’ condition, to intervene.

The truth is patients have a choice in their care facility, and nurses are with them 24/7, better patient outcomes with fewer complications are connected to excellence in nursing care, overworked and understaffed nurses cannot cross all the Ts and dot all the Is. Lack of attention leads to hospital acquired infections, bedsores, and medication errors. This seems pretty straightforward to me

Or, to put in their language, mistakes cost the hospital money. Hospital-acquired infections mean no Medicaid reimbursement and lawsuits evolve from something avoidable like a bedsore. Are nurses really that expensive that we can’t have enough of us on the same unit at the same time? I don’t think so.

It’s a win, win situation. If patients and families are very satisfied, they refer. If a work in an environment is one where professional integrity is valued, nurses won’t leave and the cost of orienting nurses to replace those who leave diminishes. Less fall out on hospital-acquired infections means more reliable reimbursement — ergo more money for the hospital.

I know that the physicians who invested in the hospital take this seriously. I saw one of them today with the wife of one of my patients, just being and talking, problem-solving and connecting. This tells me that he values patient/provider relationships. By extension, I could postulate that he values nurse/patient relationships. Take that a step further; I would say that he values nurses.

So, while the CEO focuses on my nose piercing (which no one else has ever commented on), the nurses are stressed, and the patients are receiving substandard care. Furthermore, the hospital is burning capital due to employee turnover and paying a premium for contract nurses to fill staffing holes.

I am not sure what my next steps will be. What l I know is this: Patients are someone’s person, and they deserve the best care possible. Nurses require a minimum amount of kudos and support to feel appreciated, and the feeling of being valued and supported is transmitted to their patients. Patients are revenue, and revenue keeps hospitals viable.

It seems pretty simple to me. But what do I know; I’m just a nurse.

The author is an anonymous nurse.
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Re: Educating the public on what nurses do

Unread post by Kunle Emmanuel » Tue Jul 12, 2016 8:37 am

Good
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Re: Educating the public on what nurses do

Unread post by Kunle Emmanuel » Thu Nov 09, 2017 6:55 am

Do we nurses know the power we have?

Do we really know or realise all that we can achieve or do, just by joining hands together ?

A lot of nurses are working in hospitals where they are not fulfilled as a Nurse, just because of the ridiculous , job descriptions they have to do.

Their Self ESTEEM has been tampered with......... Ripped of their self CONFIDENCE and they begin to doubt their self WORTH all because they have to make ends meet!

They are paid ridiculous amount and when they refuse the pay, these impersonators, hell practitioners are ready to take up that job for any amount.

The funny thing is, we are the most populated in the profession, we are so blessed again to be female dominated 😄(believe me, it's a blessing) but we are not making use of all the advantages we have.

The media misrepresent us always, you turn on your TV to see a Nollywood movie and you get so disgusted of how the profession is portrayed to the public.

The patients and their relatives perception about who a nurse is has been polluted by the media, impostors e. t. c.

The journalists are also not helping matters , most of them are bunch of lazy individuals who do not bother to investigate and validate information.

Alas, the nurse is on the news again for the wrong thing, it's on the front page of every newspaper for the things that were done by her impostors..... Quacks!

We get angry, frustrated, curse the profession, blame our leaders and awaiting a deliverer...........

And the irony of it all is that, WE ARE OUR OWN DELIVERER. Nobody will deliver us from all these except ourselves.

It's hard not to find a nurse in any organization, church, fellowship, association, community e. t. C. but most times we are QUIET, right there we see people who are not nurses saying they are, and we are quiet, people talk about quacks thinking they are nurses and we hear them but we just decide to be quiet.

oh, we think it's not our business..... it is our business.

If every nurse can be bold, deliberate and intentional about health educating, sensitising and enlightening every one who cares to listen and read about who a Nurse is, before we know it, the general public will be able to distinguish a Nurse from a Quack. Who will love a quack to Nurse him or her?

Join the list of courageous nurses in the campaign against quackery.

We won't keep quiet until we are heard

By Olatunji Catherine
Nigerian Nurses lighting up the world one candle at a time.

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Re: Educating the public on what nurses do

Unread post by JeanBrewer » Wed Nov 15, 2017 11:37 am

Thanks for this thread. Of course, modern public needs to be well-educated and learn more about what nurses do!

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