Is Nursing a Talent?

18 September, 2015 § Leave a comment

The Washington Post published “Is nursing a talent? You can bet your life on it.” The article is very well written and it confirms what many of us already know: it is a skill that we continually work to keep sharp and update.  In some ways, it is a lot like many of the other talents that were displayed in the Miss America pageant. We juggle a patient load, orders, varying degrees of patient acuity and needs.  We move so quickly up and down the unit that we often feel like we are on (and sometimes need) roller skates.  We have sung to our patients. We have read poetry to them. We tell them jokes. We often work magic.  Indeed, we have many of the same talents as pageant contestants, but we also have so many more talents and skills that are necessary to be a Nurse.

Since the jokes made by the hosts of the View, I have used my skills and talents as a nurse to perform CPR, stabilize a cervical spine with my hands until we were able to place a collar, managed the trach of patients so that they may continue to breath, placed an IV so that a patient could receive live saving medications, comforted and calmed scared and confused patients, decreased someone’s pain, increased someone’s hope, and gave families peace of mind that their loved ones were in good and caring hands. That is only a small fraction of what I and my 3 million colleagues have done.

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Lateral Violence and Bullying in Nursing

24 January, 2014 § Leave a comment

JoAnne, RN has written an excellent article about lateral violence and bullying in nursing and how we can deal with mistakes in a way that builds the profession instead of tearing down our fellow nurses and ancillary staff.  Take the time to read the article here, it is worth it.

Sadly, I have seen lateral violence among nurses and bullying from nurses to ancillary staff, luckily this was mostly in nursing school and environments outside of work.  Sadly, I have also been on the receiving end of said lateral violence.  Nursing is not the only profession that this happens in and before I was a RN I was a clinician in the mental health field.  I imagine this exists in any place where there is a power dynamic at play.

In my own experience, I am pretty good at standing up for myself and when I have been the victim of lateral violence and/or bullying, I immediately called them out on the behavior and justified why I did something based on my professional opinion.  I am always open to constructive criticism, both when I worked in mental health and as a nurse, but outright ridicule or remarks said to others, in a loud manner, that is meant to demean or call into question my abilities, is never acceptable.  I admit, there have been times when I did not always do this, but at this point I try and I hope my fellow nurses do the same.

When we, as nurses, see bullying we must also make it our reaponsibility to stop the bullying immediately.  Just as it is not acceptable for it to happen to us, it is also not acceptable for it to happen to others and we must attempt to end it when we see it.

Now here is the hard part: fixing mistakes and stopping violence and bullying while not engaging in the same violence and bullying ourselves but by coming from a place of compassion, understanding, patience, and teaching.

Have you ever been the victim of lateral violence or bullying? Have you witnessed lateral violence or bullying? What did you do? How can we, as a profession, address this issue?

-Anthony

I AM A Nurse

19 June, 2013 § Leave a comment

I do not think I could have said it any better.  It is often that I am short on time, short on sleep, and short on patience (and high on patients to care for) but I remember that I am there for the people I care for and they deserve the best that I have to offer, that the profession has to offer. I am not alone.  There are millions of you, my fellow colleagues, that also short on time, sleep, and patience but we are high in compassion and we stand together for our patients.

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