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The nurse will see you now?

Hospitals are working harder to retain nurses.

Newly minted nurse Katie O'Bryan was determined to stay at her first job at least a year, even if she did leave the hospital every day wanting to quit.

She lasted nine months. The stress of trying to keep her patients from getting much worse as they waited, sometimes for 12 hours, in an overwhelmed Dallas emergency room was just too much. The breaking point came after paramedics brought in a child who'd had seizures. She was told he was stable and to check him in a few minutes, but O'Bryan decided not to wait. She found he had stopped breathing and was turning blue.

"If I hadn't gone right away, he probably would have died," O'Bryan said. "I couldn't do it anymore."

Many novice nurses like O'Bryan are thrown into hospitals with little direct supervision, quickly forced to juggle multiple patients and make critical decisions for the first time in their careers. About 1 in 5 newly licensed nurses quits within a year, according to one national study.

That turnover rate is a major contributor to the nation's growing shortage of nurses. But there are expanding efforts to give new nursing grads better support. Many hospitals are trying to create safety nets with residency training programs.

Nursing is a very stressful occupation. Some people may think they are suited for the work but once they are they are actually doing it, find out the pressure is just too much.

The national nursing shortage could reach 500,000 by 2025, as many nurses retire and the demand for nurses balloons with the aging of baby boomers, according to Peter Buerhaus of Vanderbilt University Medical Center. The nursing professor is author of a book about the future of the nursing work force.

Nursing schools have been unable to churn out graduates fast enough to keep up with the demand, which is why hospitals are trying harder to retain them.

The 500,000 figure I think is lowballing how small the shortage will be. I've read it could be 2 million by fifteen years from now. It is probably somewhere in between but either way it is still signifigant.

Ever look at the newspaper help wanted advertisements? Some Hospitals in order to find the nursing help they need, pay 4 and 5 figure bonuses.

The US also imports thousands of foreign trained nurses a year to work in this country. These women and men are usually issued greencards in return.(My sister-in-law is one example) The legal immigration restrictionists fail to fathom what the effect would be on US healthcare if we decreased the numbers of visas granted.

Thank you to Neil Duckett for supplying the photo. That's gravure idol Nina minami, she was Neil's J-Babe of the week. She can take my temperature any time.


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Comments (11)

More medical schools should... (Below threshold)

More medical schools should have nursing programs. Our University just got one 30 years after the medical school opened. I have no idea who they thought was going to help the doctors for those 30 years.

And one more thing. When they say "overcrowded emergency room" remember that probably means "emergency room overcrowded with illegal immigrants and their families". There are millions of us who oppose illegal immigration because we know how it hurts the citizens of this country. The hate filled left has turned this into a "racist" issue, when illegal immigration is more appropriately a public health and finance issue. The government allowed illegal immigration and in some cases even encouraged it. Now we need to shoulder the cost of legal immigrants in addition to the cost of the illegal immigrants. Just another classic case of the government intentionally creating a problem that the government then has to attempt to fix.

You chose an image comes fr... (Below threshold)

You chose an image comes from a sexual fetish origin to accompany an article about medical professionals? Please give yourself a Knucklehead of the Day Award.

Expect this problem to get ... (Below threshold)

Expect this problem to get worse, not better. When universal health care becomes a reality, there will be a lot of pressure to keep wages down for health care providers. But at the same time, work loads will increase. When health care is free, why not drop in to the ER with a hangnail at 2 a.m.?

And don't expect the importation of foreign trained nurses to solve all problems. There isn't an unlimited supply of foreign nurses who speak English well enough to work efficiently. Expect communication problems with you health care providers to become increasingly frustrating.

She's a gravure idol which ... (Below threshold)

She's a gravure idol which is a type of Japanese model. They pose for men's magazines scantily clad but not naked, and they don't do sexually explicit photos either.

If you bothered doing an internet search, you may have found this out. Nina is cuter than the heavyset nurse I saw in one photo. She looked like she could have cracked a walnut with her thighs.

The language barrier is als... (Below threshold)

The language barrier is also a huge problem. I work with a number of engineers who are immigrants. Technical communication is difficult enough without throwing different languages and cultures into the mix. Being forced to deal with this by an uncaring governmental bureaucracy just makes matters worse.

Tyree agree with you... (Below threshold)
justpassing through:

Tyree agree with you also allot immigrants who are trained as a nurse in there native country will come to the US to work only for the money. Actual patient care is secondary.
Interesting development is that a male nurse is in high demand.

My cousin is a male nurse w... (Below threshold)

My cousin is a male nurse with a US Army background and he has always been in high demand. Schools need to stop the leftist indoctrination and start preparing children for well paying careers.

"Less Indoctrination, More Doctors and Nurses!"

Sounds pretty good to me.

BS RN's aren't trained to d... (Below threshold)

BS RN's aren't trained to do clinical work like the old Diploma Nurses were. No wonder they freak out or are incompetent when they hit the real world.

It'll never happen, but bringing back the old Diploma RN schools would go a long way to fixing the RN shortage and improving the clinical expertise of the RN.

A diploma nurse were... (Below threshold)
justpassing through:

A diploma nurse were I work will show there degree on their ID. Those are usally the old timers.

The US also import... (Below threshold)
The US also imports thousands of foreign trained nurses a year to work in this country.
The US is a major drain on nursing talent from the Philippines.

Because the Philippine education system is patterned after the U.S. curriculum along with their ability to speak English they are aggressively recruited to work stateside.

Because of in place requirements only the best and brightest are eventually accepted as a result there is an extreme shortage in the Philippines.

The sad part of it is current president (and previous ones) here lauds them as "heros" for finding gainful employment (READ: sends hundreds of millions of dollars back to P.I. each year) in the USA while ignoring the deplorable conditions of much of the medical care here.

BTW, Nursing Immigration USA estimates a 435,000 nurse shortage by 2020.

To quote the Animaniacs. <... (Below threshold)

To quote the Animaniacs. "Hellooooo Nurse!!!"






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