May, 2011 Archive

May 31, 2011, 9:44 am

Change of Shift – May, 2011

Welcome to the latest edition of Change of Shift, the nursing blog carnival!

Submissions to CoS are now accepted on a continuous basis, simply click the “Contact” button at the top of the page whenever you have a post you would like to submit.

I’m dropping the BlogCarnival submission route due the gargantuan amount of spam submissions it engenders. There may be a time and a place for the “Top Ten Uses for Tea Bags in Healthcare Reform”, but this isn’t it!

Let’s get started!

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Sue Hassmiller is the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Senior Advisor for Nursing. She is also a volunteer with the Red Cross. Abandonment Guilt, her final blog post from tornado-ravaged Alabama, can be found at AJN’s Off the Charts.

Best. Post. EVER! From BabyRNDeb at Life and Times of an L&D Nurse. What a difference One Year can make!

Over at oncRN, “the silence needs to be listened to and honored.”

*****

Gina at Code Blog continues her interview series with Cardiac Cath Lab Nurse Amy Sellers (who happens to blog at Nursing Influence).

Just pulled my head out of the sand long enough to notice that Emily at crzegrl.net has morphed into Emily at FlightEMS.com! For those who did not read her story, here is After Seven And A Half Years, crzegrl.net Becomes FlightEMS.com. This gal has been blogging since 2003. Yes. You read that correctly!

Nurse Teeny has segued from hospital to the the community and finds the nurse/patient connection just as strong. So strong, in fact, she wonders Can You Care Too Much? Where do you draw the line? Posted at The Makings of a Nurse.

*****

Psychologist Romeo Vitelli has written a wonderful two-part history of the life of Florence Nightingale. There are details here I had not known before! The Bedridden Activist (Part 1) is posted at Providentia. Part 2 can be found at the link at the bottom of Part 1.

Running Wildly likens members of her code team to the pieces of a Jigsaw Puzzle in a poignant post at Running Wildly, and muses on varied chief complaints of the ER population in Save the World.

From back in January, Shrtstormtrooper (a) invents a cuss word and (b) eats a foreign object, but it’s The Cost of Night Shift, at New Nurse Insanity: Fundus Chop. Been there, done that!

*****

We all take BCLS/ACLS. We are required to do so. But IsntSheLovlei asks, Are You Ready to Save a Life? Really ready? Posted at The Dog Ate My Care Plan….

Over at The Nurse Practioner’s Place, some advice for the Frustrations of a Nurse Practitioner Student. Can’t agree with the commenter that all students cheat, though.

Okay, this is hilarious. In the “old days” there was the CCU and the ICU. The CCU nurses thought the ICU was all dirty and septic and (ewww) GI and the ICU thought the CCU was all high-brow, didn’t want to get their hands dirty and spent all their time hovering over monitor strips. Check out the Caffeine and Xanax post Scared of the SICU. Some things never change!

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At Your Cervix writes I Know I’m at Work Too Much When… And I thought I had crazy dreams!

Wanderer can’t believe It’s Been 5 Years? of nursing at Lost on the Floor.

Mrs. Nurse notes that An Eventful Day is Usually Not a Good Day at Tales of a School Zoned Nurse.

Elle Bieling pens an thoughtful essay on pain and emotions in The Mystery of Phantom Pain posted at The Body Window.

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So, my plan for Change of Shift is to put up an edition at least once a month, towards the end of the month. Submissions received during the month will all be posted in that edition.

I’ll also be perusing the nursing blogosphere and “collecting” posts to feature in the carnival throughout the month, so don’t be surprised if you find yourself not remembering that you submitted! : )

Thanks for reading, and keep blogging!

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May 10, 2011, 3:05 pm

National Nurses Week: May 6-12 Goodies and Giveaways!

Get your AJN Subscription from MagsDirect.com

Happy National Nurses Week to all my nursing colleagues! And a very Happy Birthday to Florence Nightingale, born 191 years ago; May 12, 1820! She was 40 years old when she opened the nursing school at St. Thomas’ Hospital in London. It still exists.

Here is a recording Florence Nightingale made in 1890. Per Wikipedia, she says:

“When I am no longer even a memory, just a name, I hope my voice may perpetuate the great work of my life. God bless my dear old comrades of Balaclava and bring them safe to shore.”

I like to think she knows just how well the great work of her life is being perpetuated every minute of every day by dedicated, hard-working nurses all over the world.

What a legacy!

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Now let’s par-tay!

The folks at The Campaign for Nursing’s Future at Johnson & Johnson have a bunch of cool stuff for this week.

First of all, forget Angry Birds – I’m freaking addicted to “Happy Nurse”.

(No, it does not involve sling shots and emesis basins pointed at physicians hiding under gurneys; who would even imagine such a thing???)

It’s simple. You have a little over a minute to get to your assignment, so you run as fast as you can, but you have to jump over obstacles in your way.

Easy, you say? Pshaw!, you say? Okay, go try it! Let’s see you jump over crash carts and Dynamaps and medcarts! Ha! I’m sore and it was only my avatar that was running! And falling…

It will soon be available on iTunes, btw, but you can play it on the website now.

Oh, don’t forget to hit the hand sanitizer at the end of the run or you lose. Srsly.

*****

You can post a thank you note to a nurse on the Johnson & Johnson Nursing Notes Facebook page, and while you are there, you can pick up a “Thank a Nurse” digital badge and use it on your social networking sites.

Then, head over to Nurse.com for a free CE module: From ‘Distress’ to ‘De-Stress’ with Stress Management.

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The folks over at GIANTmicrobes are offering a free 5-7 inch plush GIANTmicrobe of choice to an Emergiblog reader in honor of National Nurses Week!

If you would like to be considered for the drawing, click the “Contact” button at the top of this page, and email me your name and snail-mail address. BE SURE TO PUT “GIANTMICROBE” IN THE SUBJECT LINE so that I will see it.

I’ll put all the names in my nursing cap (really!) and choose the winner by drawing. GIANTmicrobes will mail the little varmint directly to your house.

You have until May 17th to submit your name.

While you are waiting, go check out the GIANTmicrobe Facebook page!

*****

And finally, one of the new commercials from the Campaign for Nursing’s Future – a real ER nurse, working her real job. Have a Happy Nurses Week!

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May 5, 2011, 11:12 am

Is It Just Me, Or….

Oh hai...Well, that was an extended blog break!

I’m still kickin’!

Stagnating, but kicking.

Restless. On edge. Waiting.

For something.

*****

Love these uniforms!

I actually had the one on the right, albeit in a more ’70s updated version (aka: shorter). Not very practical, but boy did we look good back in the day! Her cap is floppy, though. Too wide, too. Only a 6/10 for that.

I’m not just waiting. I’m trying to be proactive. It’s time to make some changes.

It’s time to get off of night shift.

And it’s time to leave the emergency department.

And both of these realizations are killing me.

*****

Right now, I have the perfect ER job. So, admitting that I can no longer physically handle working night shift or thinking that I have reached the end of my career in emergency nursing feels like failure.

But, I need to take care of myself, right?

So it’s time to be proactive and take the next step, right?

Time to take a breath, take stock of my skills, brush up that CV/resume and go forward! After all, I have 32 years of strong nursing experience behind me (including a stint as a shift charge nurse), that wonderful BSN I’m so proud of (and an MSN program pending), stunning communication skills (if I say so myself) and gosh darn it, anyone would be lucky to have me!

Yes?

Uh, no.

*****

I applied for jobs outside of acute care.

You know how new grads can’t find jobs because they all want experience, but they can’t get experience because they can’t get jobs?

Now I know how they feel.

I’m looking into working in case management. I’m smart, got the skills. Communication, check. Verbal, check. Written, check. Organized? Check. Able to priortize? Check. Self-starter? Check. Experience with acute care? Check.

Experience with utilization review, case management, managed care?

<crickets>

So I send in my resume anyway, along with a cover letter explaining my interest in case management, my skills and background and how they will translate over into this new (to me) field

No response. From anyone.

One company in particular looked absolutely fantastic. I’m talking perfection. As in “Kim, this was MADE FOR YOU!” I sent in my application. Followed it up with a cover letter directly to the manager of the Human Resources department.

No response. Followed it up with a follow up letter. No response.

Lather, rinse and repeat to three other employers.

<crickets>

And for the record? All those positions are still posted.

*****

Now, I’m not saying that everyone should hire me. But what I am saying is that (a) there is no chance of making a first impression anymore and (b) where is the courtesy of at least making some contact with the applicant?

You can’t sell yourself anymore. There is no sitting with a manager or recruiter and discussing the job and what you may bring to it. You are just a screen on someone’s computer and if you don’t meet pre-determined criteria you are deleted. Without even the courtesy of a “thank you for applying, but…”

I’d make a hell of a case manager.

Right now, it doesn’t look like I’m going to get a chance to prove it.

*****

Actually, one company did send a response. A form letter.

I applied for Charge Nurse in an ambulatory care clinic (dermatology) , at a company where clients “Thrive”. Got a form email that said I didn’t meet the minimum requirements. Well, the description said “willing to train” so I’m not sure what minimum requirement I missed.

I’ll never know because no one ever contacted me in person.

I’ve spent the last 32 years saving lives, but for some reason, they thought dermatology was more than I could handle.

Those must be some rashes!

*****

Oh, by the way, after I posted that resume on Monster.com?

I was inundated with offers…

From nursing recruiters all over the country…

Looking for ER nurses.

How ironic.

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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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