April, 2008 Archive

April 29, 2008, 9:22 pm

RN-to-BSN – It’s The Way to Go


Now this is the way to deal with overcrowding in emergency departments!

Too many patients for the number of rooms? Stack ’em up vertically!

You know those big sliding ladders they use to reach books on the high shelves at Barnes and Noble? Just hook one of those to the side rails and roll your way from patient to patient!

Simply outfit each berth with it’s own monitor and blood pressure cuff.

Hmmm…HIPAA could be an issue….I know! Every patient signs an affidavit stating they will not ever tell another living soul what they see or hear!

The curse of immediate bedding solved – simply add levels as you add patients.

(Looks like that guy in the front is pretty happy, got himself some Charles Dickens and it’s time for orange juice rounds. What more could you ask for?)


I’m almost done with my “Theoretical Foundations of Nursing Practice” class and it has been very enlightening. I can tell you with absolute certainty that I would not have appreciated this material in nursing school.


Because I did not have the experience needed to relate to the concepts and approaches to nursing.

I can tell you with absolute certainty that after thirty years at the bedside, it has changed my practice.


I look at my patients differently. I find myself more culturally sensitive. I recognize assumptions that affect the way I provide care. I can look at a patient and understand that one theory does not “fit all” and choose the approach that is best for the situation.

I view the environment of my workplace differently. I’m more aware of the ethical dilemmas I see almost every day.

But most importantly, I see my profession differently and it affects my behavior and my interactions with other members of the health care team.


I’m an ADN graduate and have functioned at a very high level with that eduational background for three decades. I am proud of my ADN and would argue that the ADN program produces excellent nurses until I’m blue in the face. Call me a “technical” nurse because I don’t have a BSN and you might find yourself needing an ice pack.


Eventually, this profession is going to need to go to a BSN requirement.

Hear me out…..don’t start typing yet!

Notice I did not say a BSN as an entry level. I don’t believe a BSN is required to begin to practice nursing.

In fact, as an entry level, I don’t think a BSN is any better than an ADN!

So what am I saying?

I’m saying that all entry level programs whether ADN or BSN have one thing in common: they all must teach with an eye on passing the NCLEX. That makes the programs very inflexible as to what can be taught, and neither program can provide what you really need to appreciate nursing education at the baccalaureate level.



It is my opinion that when you put an ADN graduate in a BSN program, they will get more out of it than a student in a generic entry-level BSN program.

After you have worked as an RN, that foundation of experience allows you to take subjects like nursing theory and really absorb them, make them a part of your practice. It also allows you to contribute your experiences to the classroom – in my case an online classroom – enriching your classmates and learning from them in turn.

I really do believe it is worth it to go back to school for a BSN, if not financially, at least professionally. Once you are a working RN, an online BSN program allows so much flexibility it makes it fun to go to class. If you need a physical classroom, there are a ton of programs that you can work your schedule around.

I should have done this ten years ago.

Maybe it’s just me, but there is a value to this BSN I’m in the process of obtaining. Some of this value is tangible, some is not.

It’s making me a better nurse.

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April 27, 2008, 2:35 pm

This Blog’s For You


Ah, Bed Brushing 101.

Such memories…as if!

This was approximately three decades before my time – does anyone know why a mattress would need to be brushed?

I’ll brush my hair and my teeth before I go to work, and if everyone is lucky I’ll put on make-up to provide emotional support to those who have to look at me, but it will be a cold day in Hades before I’ll be brushing furniture!

I raked shag carpeting in the ’70s. That was quite enough!


Just a reminder that (a) I have not fallen off the face of the earth, despite never having gone this long without blogging(!) and (b) Change of Shift is being hosted this week over at Life in the NHS. Julie awaits your submissions at “lifeinthenhs at btinternet dot com”.

I have so many things to blog about that my cup overfloweth. Unfortunately, lately, the blog does not overfloweth. Tomorrow I shall go to my “blogging place” (aka Starbucks) and put all these scattered topics into some sort of logical order.

It’s not a scarcity of material, but more a scarcity of time/motivation. What do you do when you know you want to blog, but you don’t exactly want to blog right then?

Translation: I spent the morning watching the NASCAR race at Talladega and drinking Bud Light. One must support the sponsors of one’s drivers. My husband went to Home Depot. I told him we don’t do Home Depot because we don’t like Tony Stewart!

He was not aware of “our” preferences.

And so, the return of my latte-sated “Nursing” self is scheduled for tomorrow!

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April 17, 2008, 5:25 pm

I Don’t Wanna Study!


Well, well it looks like Nurse Gertrude is taking orders triaging in the Men’s Geriatric Emergency Department!

Uncle Joe is giving his order while Bert is helping Ernie with the menu selections.

You would think he would know Thursday is “Meatloaf Day”!

Please note the uneven black stripe on Nurse Gertrude’s cap.




Change of Shift is up and running over at Nurse Sean’s this week and he did a bee-u-tiful job! He really set the bar high with this edition!

Next edition Julie at Life in the NHS is taking on hosting duties. I’ll forward any submissions you send (and I’ll post Julie’s CoS email address when I get it), or you can always use Blog Carnival.


funny pictures

First of all, many thanks for all the prayers and thoughts over the last week!

They worked – no cancer!

Not sure what actually is going on, but it ain’t the big “C”!

Get this – I called the MD office to find out if they would call me if the biopsy results came in sooner than two weeks.

They already had the results, and no one called to tell me.

Now why the hell would you make someone wait two weeks when the results were in within six days? We’re talking biopsy here, folks, not a toe x-ray!

Well, the doctor must have given permission because her medical technician read me the results over the phone.

And Monday I’ll have an official visit to figure out what is going on and if we even have to do anything.

My doctor is wonderful. She is really soft-spoken, nice, understanding. And she works in an ungodly busy practice. I think I’d be more comfortable in a smaller practice. I know I’m not the only patient she has. But when waiting for something as significant as biopsy results, one would like to think they are at least a significant patient.

Hmmm…I feel a blog post coming on……

At any rate, if there is more to the story, I’ll reactivate Scared to Health and do my “patient” blogging over there.

I guess my dream of being the first person to live blog their hysterectomy is on hold……



Of all who work in the emergency medical field, the ones on the front lines are the true “heroes”.

Paramedics put their lives on the line everyday. It’s what they do.

Monkey Girl at Musings of a Highly Trained Monkey has a story of a medic who paid the ultimate price.

And the fund raiser held each year since 2006 for his two sons.

Read the story, then click the “Donate” button. I did.

For all those who pay the ultimate price in the line of duty.

(Photo courtesy of freefoto.com)



You know, one of these days I will get around to posting the next installment of my idea for nursing education, even though someone in the comments of the last post on the topic actually beat me to it (hi, Candy!).

In the meantime consider this:

The price of a PALS recertification class: $125.00

The price of required materials: $35.00

Not studying so you can post to your blog: Priceless!



And in the “it’s my blog so I’ll post what I want” category, we have this man.

It’s a good thing I’m not watching American Idol this year because (a) I’d be upset that Michael Johns is gone, (b) I’d be betting my last dime that David Archuleta will win it all and (c) I might develop a terrible crush on this gorgeous hunk.

That is, if I was watching American Idol.

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About Me

My name is Kim, and I'm a nurse in the San Francisco Bay area. I've been a nurse for 33 years; I graduated in 1978 with my ADN. My experience is predominately Emergency and Critical Care, and I have also worked in Psychiatry and Pediatrics. I made the decision to be a nurse back in 1966 at the age of nine...

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