DiversityNursing Blog

Conflict Resolution in Nursing

Posted by Erica Bettencourt

Fri, Oct 20, 2017 @ 12:19 PM

The+truth+about+the+handshake.jpgWorkplace conflict is common across all industries especially in a fast paced and stressful field like Nursing. Conflict mediation can be complex and typically Nurse managers step in to help resolve the problem.

Acoording to Nurse.com, conflict is a disagreement between two or more people who differ in attitudes, beliefs, values, feelings or needs. It’s a part of every work environment, including healthcare organizations. The ingredients of conflict include:

 
  • Needs. These are essential to wellbeing; therefore, conflict can arise when needs are not met. Not to be confused with desires (what we would like), needs are vital elements.
  • Perceptions. People interpret situations differently. Misperceptions can cause a breakdown in communication, leading to conflict.
  • Power. How people define, interpret and use power can greatly influence conflict. Conflict may arise when one person seeks to influence or exert power over another.
  • Values. Values are beliefs that a person deems important. Serious conflicts can occur when people hold incompatible values.
  • Feelings and emotions. People often let emotions dictate how they react in a given circumstance. Conflict can arise when people let their feelings lead the way, or if another person’s feelings are ignored or devalued. It’s important to separate emotions from the issue.

Below are a few suggestions on how to best deal with workplace disputes and dilemmas.
 

Gather Info And Meet With Both Parties

Nurse Jenkins from thenursespeak.com says, issues are often brought up as a one-sided story, influenced with subjective data like emotions or perceptions. Other times, the issues presented may be missing essential information, such as objective data that can paint a clearer picture of what actually happened.

Make sure you do your best to understand the entire situation before reacting. In many cases, getting the whole story will help alleviate the conflict immediately, as the problem can be more clearly identified and addressed appropriately.

Journalist Susan M. Heathfield from The Balance, believes meeting both parties separately is unwise because Nurse managers run the risk of becoming biased to one opinion. The most effective way to resolve conflict is for managers to discuss the incident with both parties in the same room, affording them both an equal amount of time to state their case. This approach promotes fairness and balance, more effectively paving the way for a peaceful resolution.

Conflict Resolution Training

According to onlinedegrees.bradley.edu, an important strategy Nurse managers should implement is to hold conflict resolution training sessions for Nursing staff so that any minor conflicts can be resolved successfully by Nurses themselves. This approach is important because there will be times when Nursing staff has to work without the supervision of a manager. Training sessions could involve acting out hypothetical conflicts and then work as a group toward a resolution.
 

Hire The Right People For Your Team

An article by elearning.loyno.edu, says hiring people, especially in healthcare management and leadership roles who demonstrate a strong skillset in resolving and managing conflict is the first step in the right direction.

Effective healthcare systems management relies on hiring the right people for your culture and workplace. When hiring employees, consider whether they have a proven history of efficiency and teamwork. Ask questions around what they would do in specific situations involving conflict, and listen to the way they describe how they have managed similar occurrences they’ve dealt with in the past.

Conflict can’’t be avoided, but it can be solved. Although avoidance sometimes seems like the easy way out, facing conflict head-on in an appropriate and professional manner will lead to better relationships, a more productive work environment and empowerment. We hope these suggestions help with any future conflicts that may arise.

What has helped you solve a conflict at work? Comment below and tell us what has worked for you in the past.

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Topics: conflict resolution, workplace conflict

Disaster Response Gives Retired Nurse New Purpose

Posted by Johnson&Johnson

Thu, Oct 12, 2017 @ 11:12 AM

NP-DN_4.jpgArticle from www.discovernursing.com

With the many horrific disasters happening across the country, have you considered how you can help? Of course you have. You’re a Nurse and that’s what you do – care for others. This is a terrific interview of a Nurse who retired a year ago and is now volunteering for the Red Cross. Her skills are desperately needed. Perhaps her story will inspire you.

Mary Yoshino, FNP, wore an identification badge for years that told the world who she was and what she represented in the healthcare community. When she retired from being a nurse, Mary wasn’t sure what her next step would be, but she knew she wanted to continue to help people.

Currently, Mary is on the ground in Houston, Texas, volunteering in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey, an extremely destructive Category 4 Atlantic hurricane that made landfall in southern Texas in August 2017. We recently had the opportunity to speak with her to learn more about her career and her current role as a volunteer disaster response nurse.

Nursing Notes (NN): Can you share a little bit about your nursing background?

Mary: All my life, I wanted to be a nurse. As a student nurse at Johnston-Willis Hospital School of Nursing in Richmond, Va., I became very active with the American Red Cross by taking and teaching classes. Since graduation, my nursing career has spanned 47 years in all areas of nursing and multiple states. I have worked in intensive care units and emergency rooms, college health services, and the Army Nurse Corps Reserve. I went back to school to become a nurse practitioner in 1990, and then worked as a family nurse practitioner for 26 years before retiring last year at the age of 69. I took this past year to reflect on what I wanted to do in my next phase of life.  

NN: What made you want to volunteer during Hurricane Harvey, and how did you get involved?

Mary: I received a text from my son in Friendswood, Texas, saying that his home was taking on water and that he and his family were evacuating. That morning, I signed up to volunteer with the Red Cross. I was so desperate to help people again and was deployed out of Albany, N.Y., to Houston with a team of four other nurses.

NN: What are your day-to-day responsibilities as a volunteer nurse?

Mary: Currently, I’m a supervisor for a 460-resident shelter facility. We’re responsible for going from cot to cot, making rounds and assessing residents’ health needs daily. We are doing dressing changes, distributing over-the-counter medications, and calling for prescription refills. Some of our patients are very sick; yesterday alone we called 911 four times. We talk to our patients, hear their stories, and hold back our tears as we wipe away theirs. Our day is busy. There’s no time to sit, and very little time to eat because our patients’ needs come first.  

NN: What is the most rewarding aspect of this volunteer role?

Mary: The most rewarding aspect is to see the gratefulness in the eyes of the people we help. They come in feeling dehumanized, as they have lost all that they hold dear. Some cry and some are quiet, but they see that we care and we talk to them about the realness of their situation and ask them quietly how we may help them. Today, I was with a woman who teared up and said, "You really care, don't you?" A kind smile, manners, and showing respect goes a long way.

NN: What did you take away from this experience?

Mary: This experience has inspired me to go back and work in our local Red Cross chapter, to be a spokesperson for the Red Cross and to encourage others to volunteer. Even on a local front, there are so many ways to help.

NN: What do you wish others knew about the impact that Hurricane Harvey has had on citizens and communities?

Mary: My team has seen firsthand the destruction around Houston and realized just how real this hurricane was and how it has changed the lives of so many. As other breaking news has developed, people here are still feeling the effects of Harvey and are coming together in the communities that were hit the hardest. In my son's community, all homes were destroyed, but they went door to door helping each other. It’s about people helping people.

NN: What advice do you have for other nurses who are interested in disaster response nursing?

Mary: Let's do it!!! Be there, hold a hand, wipe a tear, make people feel human and safe again. Think back to why you became a nurse, and let those reasons once again come to the front. Let's go make a difference.

NN: Is there anything else you’d like to share about this experience?

Mary: When I retired from nursing, I broke down emotionally. I did not know who I was besides a nurse practitioner. The Red Cross has given me my life back. I feel like I have found my niche. I came to Houston and realized that I can still make a difference. I will return home in mid-October after having been in Houston for a month. In November, I hope to be deployed somewhere again. This time, I will go in knowing I have the confidence to lead and make a difference for the victims of a disaster.

To learn more about volunteering as a nurse through the Red Cross, visit www.redcross.org.  

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Topics: first responders, retired nurse, natural disasters, disaster response

Frontier Nursing University Hires Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer

Posted by Frontier Nursing University

Thu, Oct 05, 2017 @ 02:25 PM

Header_712x230.jpgHyden, KY -- Frontier Nursing University (FNU), a graduate school offering nurse-midwifery and nurse practitioner programs through distance education, has hired Dr. Maria Valentin-Welch, DNP, MPH, CNM, FACNM, as its first chief diversity and inclusion officer to lead the University on matters of equity, diversity and inclusion. Dr. Valentin-Welch is a certified nurse-midwife and has served as a course coordinator at FNU since 2013. She will assume the new role on October 1, 2017. 
 
officer.jpgFNU’s chief diversity and inclusion officer (CDIO) will lead the development of a vision and strategy that champions the importance of a diverse and inclusive environment that values and supports all members of the University community. The addition of the CDIO position is the most recent of a number of diversity initiatives implemented as part of FNU’s strategic plan to heighten the focus on diversity and inclusion for all faculty, staff and students. The CDIO will serve on the executive team along with the president, dean, chief operations officer and the executive vice president for finance and facilities.
 
“Research tells us that in order to incorporate an effective culture of diversity and inclusion, you must have top administrators at the highest level in the organization leading the charge,” says FNU President Dr. Susan Stone. “We have done so much to foster a culture that values diversity and inclusion; this was the natural next step for our University.”  
 
Dr. Valentin-Welch has worked on diversity and inclusion efforts throughout her career. One of her first assignments at FNU will be leading the implementation of a four-year program to increase the recruitment, enrollment, retention and graduation of students from disadvantaged backgrounds, made possible by a HRSA Nursing Workforce Diversity Grant totaling $1,998,000 that was awarded to FNU earlier this year.
 
Dr. Valentin-Welch joined the Frontier Nursing University faculty four years ago and has served as a co-chair of FNU’s Diversity and Inclusion Committee. She will be moving to Kentucky in 2018 to join other administrative staff at FNU’s campus, which will be relocating from Lexington to Versailles next year.
 
“I am very excited to get started in this new role because focusing on diversity and inclusion will only strengthen Frontier’s roots, as well as our mission and vision,” said Dr. Valentin-Welch. “The birthplace of nurse-midwifery in the United States stems from the roots of Frontier Nursing University. Therefore, I am humbled and honored to become FNU’s first chief diversity and inclusion officer. Together, hand in hand, we will bring our FNU Community to higher heights.”
 
Additionally, Dr. Valentin-Welch will offer leadership support to FNU’s Diversity PRIDE Program which has been in place since 2010 and was designed to promote diversity in nursing and midwifery by recruiting more underrepresented students. She will also focus on collaborative opportunities with other organizations to facilitate the goals of diversity and inclusion at FNU.
 
“I believe our founding mother, Mary Breckinridge, is smiling down at Frontier as we open this new historical chapter… a chapter made up of many different pages creating a wonderfully diverse and inclusive book,” said Dr. Valentin-Welch. 
 
Contact: Brittney Edwards, Director of Marketing and Communications
859-899-2515, [email protected]
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Topics: Frontier Nursing University, Diversity and Inclusion, chief diversity officer

Burnout in Nursing

Posted by Erica Bettencourt

Wed, Oct 04, 2017 @ 11:24 AM

20170405_cover.jpgBurnout amongst Nurses isn't a new thing. In fact, it could be getting worse. With a combination of Nurses retiring and an influx of aging patients, this can become too much to handle and some will leave their profession.

According to Fierce Healthcare, several stressors lead to high levels of pressure and Nurse burnout.  These include:

  • High patient acuity (years ago, these patients would have been in the ICU)
  • High nurse-to-patient ratios (not acuity-based)
  • Multiple discharges and admissions (many nurses will discharge and admit an entire team of patients during their shift)
  • Lack of ancillary support and resources
  • Leaders who assume that nurses “can take one more patient”
  • Physicians who expect nurses to drop everything and attend to their needs
  • Interruptions while on their break
  • The expectation that nurses are all-giving.

A survey by travel nursing company RNnetwork, found that almost half of the Nurses they asked were considering leaving the profession. About a quarter said they felt overworked, 46 percent said their workloads had risen and 41 percent said they’d been harassed or bullied by managers or administrators. Making matters worse, with the aging of the baby boom generation, demand for health care is rising at the same time that large numbers of experienced Nurses are retiring.

Ashley Neuman, LPCC-S, one of Blazey’s colleagues in Cleveland Clinic’s Wellness Enterprise, offered advice to caregivers during a 30-minute Wellness Connection presentation entitled “Managing Burnout in the Workplace: How Caregivers Cope.” She began with a definition of burnout, which can have three components:

  • Emotional Exhaustion – “Burnout can occur when you’re not just physically tired, but you are emotionally exhausted,” says Neuman. “It’s when you don’t have the motivation to get up, get moving and finish that one last clinical note. That emotional weight becomes heavier every day.”
  • Depersonalization – This happens when you have an unfeeling or impersonal response toward recipients of your service, care or instruction. “Nothing sparks passion or you don’t have that intrinsic motivation anymore,” she explains.
  • Dissatisfaction in Personal Achievements – Nurses who experience burnout may lack feelings of competence and achievement in their work. Neuman says, “You become a shell of yourself, losing interest in things you normally enjoy doing.” Maybe you dread going into a patient’s room or going home to make yet another dinner for your family.

Here are some tips that may help Nurses dealing with burnout.

1. Identify The best type of Nursing job for you

The field of Nursing is a large and diverse field. People in this profession might work in hospitals, doctors’ offices, nursing homes, office jobs, mobile units, private practices, home care, schools, the military, and even large public venues like amusement parks. And within the profession, there are medical specialties, such as pediatrics, cardiology, ophthalmology, geriatrics, and sports medicine. Spend some time figuring out what you like the most, and then focus your job search in this.

2. Search for workplaces with lower nurse-to-patient ratios

The Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) linked hospital Nurse staffing to nurse burnout and job dissatisfaction in their research on the topic of high Nurse turnover. "Nurses in hospitals with the highest patient-to-nurse ratios are more than twice as likely to experience job-related burnout and almost twice as likely to be dissatisfied with their jobs compared with Nurses in the hospitals with the lowest ratios," JAMA reported.  

The more patients Nurses are expected to care for in a given shift, the less time they have per patient. This can make the usually empathetic task of caring for patients feel more robotic, stressful and incomplete.

3. take care of your own body first

Most Nurses are inclined to take care of others first and worry about themselves later. But in order to be an effective nurse with a long career ahead of you, it’s critical that you take care of your own body. Be sure to make time in your life for adequate exercise, good nutrition, and restful sleep. Bring nutritious protein-packed foods during your breaks. And after a long day on your feet, don’t be afraid to just relax!

4.Learn to say “No.”

masmedicalstaffing.com says, For professionals in healthcare, it’s often our natural inclination to jump right in when someone asks for our help.

However, if you already have an overloaded schedule, your first concern should be to keep yourself healthy—otherwise, you won’t be able to take care of your patients properly.

So instead of always extending a helping hand, take a moment to consider whether you really have the time and energy to do so without adding a bunch of new Nurse stress-inducers to your day.

And if you can’t help out, say so firmly yet politely.

The next two tips are from www.travelnursesource.com

5. Eat Healthy and Stay Hydrated

It’s not a secret that the food that you consume plays a big role in your mood and productivity. Increase your fruits and vegetable intake as well as whole grains and lean meat within your diet for an energy-boosting food palette. To increase productivity, eat food that is rich in fiber and carbohydrates. Stick to food with high levels of omega-3 fatty acids to help reduce depression and lift your mood.

 6. Socialize

Having a support system is an integral part of a healthy mental and emotional state. Take some time from your busy schedule to socialize with your friends and family to take a break from your stressful environment. It’s scientifically proven that when we are more likely be happy when we are surrounded by the people who we love – that is why humans are a social creature.

What are some ways you prevent burnout in your life? Comment your thoughts below!

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Topics: burnout, nursing careeer, Nurse burnout

The Vital Role of Nurses in Addressing Climate Change

Posted by Contributor

Thu, Sep 28, 2017 @ 01:56 PM

homepage_6_orig-1.jpgThis article was written by the MODERN NURSE at www.discovernursing.com

Nurses are the largest group of healthcare providers and you have a lot of power. You can help make changes that affect your patients and the environment. With climate change on the rise, you can create awareness of areas within your place of employment that need improvement. The reduction of strong chemicals, plastics and paper items can have a strong impact. Check out this interview regarding the Nursing community and how you can affect environmental change.

Public awareness and interest in all things “green” has created a need for nurses to understand environmental issues and their relationship to health with credible, evidence-based information, as well as provide leadership in making the necessary changes in our policies and practices. Cara Cook, MS, RN, AHN-BC, is working to increase awareness and promote action that addresses climate change as a health imperative among the nursing community through her role as climate change program coordinator for the Alliance of Nurses for Healthy Environments (ANHE). We spoke with Cara, who was recently chosen as a 2017 Johnson & Johnson Global Citizen Young Health Leader, about the connection between environmentalism and nursing, and how her background as a nurse has prepared her for advocacy work.

Nursing Notes (NN): How long have you been a nurse, and what significant changes have you seen in the nursing profession since you began practicing?

Cara: I’ve been a nurse for a little more than eight years, and one major change I’ve noticed is the nursing contribution to environmentally safe practice environments. Nurses have long been advocates for safe nurse-patient ratios and preventing adverse health outcomes, such as falls or healthcare-associated infections. In addition to those important patient safety issues, nurses are realizing the connection between the environments in which we live, work, and play, and how this influences health outcomes.

Nurses are at the forefront of change within practicing settings through advocating for use of safer chemicals in hospital cleaning supplies, by forming green teams or sustainability departments that focus on reducing an institution’s environmental impact, or from working in communities to ensure patients have access to healthy foods and safe areas to exercise.

NN: Why is understanding climate change important for nurses?

Cara: Climate change is one of the biggest global health threats we face today. Nurses are on the frontlines of communities caring for patients impacted by climate change, so it’s important for nurses to understand the connection between climate change and health, and how the health sector can respond.

As the most trusted profession and largest group of healthcare providers, nurses are urgently needed to lead the fight against climate change. Being aware of and advocating for solutions to limit and respond to climate change is within our scope of nursing practice, with our own practice standards stating the “registered nurse practices in an environmentally safe and healthy manner.”

NN: How did you get involved with ANHE?

Cara: As part of my master’s program, I was required to complete a certain number of hours for two semesters with a public health organization. Since my area of interest is in environmental health, I was paired to work with Katie Huffling, the executive director at ANHE. At that time, my work with ANHE involved federal reform of toxic chemical policy and participation in campaigns at the state level focused on advancing health-protective regulations for hydraulic fracturing and antibiotic use in animal agriculture. About a year after I graduated, ANHE received funding to expand their climate change and health program, and I came on board as a full-time employee.

NN: How has your background as a nurse prepared you for your current position?

Cara: Nurses feel very comfortable advocating on behalf of patients in healthcare facilities, so all it took was learning how to translate that skill into the policy arena. Another core part of nursing that has prepared me for my current position is the focus on evidence-based practice. Environmental health or climate change work is similar in that you need to look at the evidence in order to understand the issues and potential solutions, and how to adequately communicate this to the public or legislators.

Also, I think being able to work through the unanticipated and creatively solve problems when everything seems to be going wrong, as so often is needed in bedside nursing, has helped with working through some of the challenges in environmental health work.

NN: What do your day-to-day responsibilities look like as a climate change program coordinator?

Cara: My role includes spearheading ANHE’s climate change and health program that aims to increase awareness among the nursing profession on the health impacts posed by climate change. Through this program, I work to engage individual nurses and nursing organizations in prioritizing climate change as a health imperative, emphasizing the urgency for nursing action in frontline communities and in an advocacy role. One of our current initiatives is working to form a Nursing Collaborative on Climate Change and Health, which is an effort to unite national nursing organizations around climate change, with the goals of bringing health to the forefront of discussion and policy-making and ensuring a coordinated nursing response across specialties.

Since our organization has a small staff, I also help with our other environmental health initiatives, currently focused on water and health, air pollution, energy and health, safer chemicals, and food sustainability. ANHE also provides advocacy trainings, which I help organize and run, for nurses to learn how to be successful advocates on environmental health issues.

NN: What is your favorite part of your job?

Cara: My favorite part of my job is working with and meeting such amazing nurses. Working for ANHE allows me to meet and work with a variety of nurses from different specialties and learn more about the work being done to address environmental health issues. I lead ANHE’s Global Nurses Climate Change Committee, which provides an opportunity to connect with nurses across the world and learn about what is being done in other countries around climate change.

Another perk of my job is being able to talk with nurses about climate and health, and help them learn how they can move action forward in their own practice. It’s rewarding to inspire nurses to take action and to see how passionate they become when they learn about how climate change is creating significant challenges for health.

NN: What is the most challenging part of your job?

Cara: With environmental health work, and even policy work in general, it can be challenging not to get discouraged. Working with such a strong group of nurses helps to keep the momentum going when efforts can be disheartening.

NN: Looking forward, what advancements/changes do you expect to see in nursing?

Cara: Our healthcare system is in a fragile state, and there must be some dramatic changes for the system to be sustainable. We are already seeing a shift to prevention and building up the primary care system, with increasing attention to how environmental factors can affect health, and I think nurses and nurse practitioners will have a major role in this shift as our profession branches off into different avenues of care outside of traditional settings.

NN: Is there anything else that you would like to add?

Cara: Many of these environmental health issues, including climate change, can seem so daunting, almost as if there is nothing that can be done to reverse the course of action. However, there are solutions to address these complex issues and we are at a critical point where, as nurses we can make a big impact on the health of our patients and communities. Nurses are so important to moving the health message forward on climate change and, collectively, we have incredible power to drive change.

To learn more about environmental health and how climate change impacts health, or to join ANHE, visit envirn.org. For more information on Health Policy Nursing, visit DiscoverNursing.com. To learn more about the Johnson & Johnson partnership with Global Citizen, visit jnj.com/progress

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Topics: environment, recycling, waste, Climate Change, plastic waste

This Photo Of A New Mom And Her Nurse Goes Viral

Posted by Erica Bettencourt

Mon, Sep 25, 2017 @ 01:08 PM

21728093_10154618859726627_4483838069848273731_n.jpgAppreciation – we love to feel appreciated for what we do, but often, it feels like our work sometimes goes unnoticed. Here’s a story we think you’ll enjoy. It’s all about appreciation and the work Nurses do. This is a big Thank You to Labor & Delivery Nurses, Midwives and Doula’s.

Mother of four, Jill Krause, recently saw a photo by Katie Lacer that moved her. She was overcome with memories and gratitude for the Nurses. Jill shared the photo with her thoughts about the labor, delivery, and postpartum Nurses who help new mothers in their most vulnerable moments. The post quickly went viral and mothers everywhere commented their experiences and shared their thanks to all the Nurses out there.  Below is Jill's post, check it out and leave your thoughts in the comment sections!

"I'll never forget the faces of the nurses who followed me into the bathroom after delivering each baby. That moment when I was so vulnerable, so tired, scared, shaky. My swollen belly deflating, and my modesty long gone. They treated me with such kindness and dignity. For me, these have been moments of empowerment and confirmation that I have a real village to help me, even if just for that little bit of time in a bathroom, on a toilet, while a kind nurse shows me how to put an ice pad on my mesh undies. This photo by my friend MommaKT Shoots just takes me right back. Like, I can smell the Dermaplast. Let's hear it for the nurses and the doulas and anyone else who shows us how to make ice pad underwear (or helps with that first shower post c-section!) <3"

Posts came pouring in from moms all over! Below are some of the posts that were shared.

"When I was pushing, I'll never forget pulling my face away from my nurse's chest to see her scrub top SOAKED with my sweat and tears. I was like, 'Oh my god I'm so sorry!' And she said, 'Baby, this is life all over my shirt. Nowhere else I'd rather be. Now let's get that baby out.'" —Leigh Kathleen, Facebook

sub-buzz-4384-1505429714-1.pngPictured: Joanie McConnell, CNM at the University of Louisville by Katie Lacer / Via mommaktshoots.com

"I will never forget the nurse that helped me get to the bathroom for the first time after I had my daughter. I was hemorrhaging and when I stood it was so humiliating...but that kind soul didn't flinch. I kept apologizing and she kept reassuring me that it was nothing. I will never forget watching her clean my legs and I just kept thinking that this is what my God means when he says love your neighbor." —Tiffany Barnes

"My husband and I lost our daughter at 23 weeks two years ago, and delivered our rainbow baby boy at the same hospital this May. All the nurses I had knew our history, and when my son was born he wasn't breathing. He was immediately taken away to the NICU and I just could not stop sobbing. My nurses cried with me. They rubbed my hair and my back and did everything they possibly could to get me mobile and up to see my sweet boy in the NICU." —Lauren Self, Facebook

Thank you Nurses!
sub-buzz-9840-1505430155-4.png
Pictured: NICU nurse at Norton Women's & Children's Hospital discusses care measures for one of Amanda and Lauren Vinova's preemie triplets. By Katie Lacer / Via mommaktshoots.com

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Topics: new moms, labor nurses, delivery nurse, birth photo, viral nurse photo, thank nurses, midwives, doula

5 Problems Nurses Face Today

Posted by Erica Bettencourt

Tue, Sep 19, 2017 @ 10:53 AM

nursing-student-studying.jpg

Here’s an article we’re quite sure you have strong feelings about regarding your work environment. Do you agree or disagree that these problems exist? Are there other issues you experience that we should add to this list? Please make any comments and/or suggestions in our comments section below!

Nursing is a challenging job and issues arise that are out of your control. Some are direct results of communication and interactions amongst Nurses. Below are the 5 biggest problems Nurses face today.

Being Short Staffed

This can bring professional and personal issues. When a hospital is short-staffed, you’re left with no other option but to take on more shifts, cover for your co-nurses’ absences, and miss out on important life occasions. Your social life can suffer, too.

Short staffing is one of the most common reasons why nurses experience burnout. Nursing is already a stressful job and not having enough time to relax and care for yourself can make you feel more frustrated and unsatisfied with your job.

Long Shifts

Nurses are often required to work more long hours. It can be due to the hospital being short-staffed or management cutting costs. Whichever the reason, Nurses, working longer than they're supposed to, is detrimental. It can affect the quality of care they deliver, and it can also put their health at risk.

When Nurses work extended hours, they aren't resting properly and aren't letting their bodies recover. for example, many Nurses who take extended shifts suffer from chronic back, leg and shoulder pain. Some of them even develop long-term medical conditions, like diabetes and cardiovascular issues.

By not being well-rested, you can suffer from daytime sleepiness, fatigue, and impaired mental function. It can affect your ability to make proper decisions, which can compromise your patients’ safety.

Salary

The compensations Nurses receive depend on many factors. Aside from specialty, their place of work tends to affect the salary they get, as well. Having a higher degree counts as well. Salary is a common reason why Nurses leave a hospital.

Discrimination

Nurses eating their young isn’t an entirely new thing. In fact, this has been around for ages.

Being a new Nurse is intimidating and you have to adjust to many new things. Apart from the skills you have to gain, you also have to learn how to cope with how the Nursing system in your hospital works.

Unfortunately, not all veteran Nurses are that welcoming. These attitudes tend to dull the enthusiasm of new Nurses enough to make them question themselves if they made the right career choice. You are all on the same team, strengthen your team by welcoming new Nurses and being a little more patient with them.

Job Hazards

Working in the hospital puts nurses in a lot of work hazards. Take, for example, being exposed to infected body fluids. Apart from that, lifting patients of all sizes can also put your safety at risk. Nurses also have to deal with sharps and needles and running on slippery floors during emergencies.

Nursing can be difficult and we appreciate everything they deal with. If you have anything to add please comment below!

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Topics: nurse problems

African American Health Disparities

Posted by Erica Bettencourt

Thu, Sep 14, 2017 @ 11:19 AM

disparities.pngResearch has documented a number of racial disparities in health care, including higher death rates among African-Americans than whites. New government data shows some significant improvements.

The study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found African Americans are living longer. The death rate for African Americans has declined about 25% over 17 years, primarily for those aged 65 years and older.

However, younger African Americans are living with or dying of many conditions typically found in white Americans at older ages.The difference shows up in African Americans in their 20s, 30s, and 40s for diseases and causes of death.

graphic-a_920px-1.png

Chronic diseases and some of their risk factors may be silent or not diagnosed during these early years. Health differences are often due to economic and social conditions that are more common among African Americans than whites. For example, African American adults are more likely to report they cannot see a doctor because of cost. All Americans should have equal opportunities to pursue a healthy lifestyle.

According to the 2016 National Healthcare Quality and Disparities Report, some disparities were getting smaller from 2000 through 2014-2015, but disparities persist, especially for poor and uninsured populations in all priority areas:

  • While 20% of measures show disparities getting smaller for Blacks and Hispanics, most disparities have not changed significantly for any racial and ethnic groups.
  • More than half of measures show that poor and low-income households have worse care than high-income households; for middle-income households, more than 40% of measures show worse care than high-income households.
  • Nearly two-thirds of measures show that uninsured people had worse care than privately insured people.

It is important to create opportunities for all Americans to pursue a healthy lifestyle. What can be done?

The Federal government is

  • Collecting data to monitor and track health and conditions that may affect health, such as poverty and high school graduation rates, through Healthy People 2020. http://bit.ly/2oDhWV4
  • Supporting partnerships between scientific researchers and community members to address diseases and conditions that affect some populations more than others.
  • Addressing heart disease, stroke, and other cardiovascular diseases, which disproportionately affect African Americans, by implementing national initiatives such as Million Hearts®. http://bit.ly/2p0Ux0N
  • Supporting actions to create healthy food environments and increase physical activity in underserved communities.

Public health professionals can

  • Use proven programs to reduce disparities and barriers to create opportunities for health.
  • Work with other sectors, such as faith and community organizations, education, business, transportation, and housing, to create social and economic conditions that promote health starting in childhood.
  • Link more people to doctors, nurses, or community health centers to encourage regular and follow-up medical visits.
  • Develop and provide trainings for healthcare professionals to understand cultural differences in how patients interact with providers and the healthcare system.


Community organizations can

  • Train community health workers in underserved communities to educate and link people to free or low-cost services.
  • Conduct effective health promotion programs in community, work, school, and home settings.
  • Work across sectors to connect people with services that impact health, such as transportation and housing.
  • Help people go see their doctor, take all medications as prescribed, and get to follow-up appointments.


Healthcare providers can

  • Work with communities and healthcare professional organizations to eliminate cultural barriers to care.
  • Connect patients with community resources that can help people remember to take their medicine as prescribed, get prescription refills on time, and get to follow-up visits.
  • Learn about social and economic conditions that may put some patients at higher risk than others for having a health problem.
  • Collaborate with primary care physicians to create a comprehensive and coordinated approach to patient care.
  • Promote a trusting relationship by encouraging patients to ask questions.

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Topics: African Americans, health disparities

Nurses Should Know What Dangers Mothers Face After Giving Birth

Posted by Erica Bettencourt

Thu, Aug 31, 2017 @ 10:06 AM

26005025555_29d4ea8bc8_z-1.jpgProPublica and NPR launched a project about maternal deaths and near-deaths in the U.S. In recent months, mothers who nearly died in the hours and days after giving birth have repeatedly told ProPublica and NPR that their doctors and Nurses were often slow to recognize the warning signs that their bodies weren't healing properly.

Discharge materials the hospital sends home with new mothers can be vague and confusing. The reports show the same themes through many of these survivors’ recollections. They frequently said they knew little to nothing beforehand about the complications that nearly killed them. Even when the women were convinced something was terribly amiss, doctors and Nurses were sometimes slow to believe them. Mothers especially lacked information about risks in the postpartum period.

A study by MCN: The American Journal of Maternal/Child Nursing surveyed 372 postpartum Nurses nationwide and nearly one-third of the respondents had masters or doctoral degrees. The survey found that:

  • Close to half of the nurses surveyed didn’t know that maternal mortality rates have gone up in the U.S. in recent years. In fact, 19 percent of them thought maternal deaths had declined.
  • Only 12 percent of the nurses surveyed knew that most maternal deaths occur in the days and weeks after delivery, and only 24 percent were able to identify heart-related problems as the leading cause of maternal death in the U.S.
  • Nurses also admitted in the survey that they are uncomfortable discussing life-threatening complications with new mothers because childbirth is supposed to be a happy time and they don’t want to scare them.

Researchers found that Nurses could be quickly educated with short, targeted information. Using insights from the focus groups, an expert panel developed two standardized tools: a checklist and script that nurses could follow when instructing new mothers and a one-page handout of post-birth warning signs that mothers could refer to after they returned home, with clear-cut instructions for when to see a doctor or call 911.

An estimated 700 to 900 women die every year from pregnancy and childbirth-related causes, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The only way to bring this number down is for everyone to be more aware of what the complications are and how to prevent them.

Topics: childbirth, maternal death rate, maternal death

New Study to Define Health Issues in LGBTQ Community

Posted by Erica Bettencourt

Fri, Aug 25, 2017 @ 10:08 AM

LGBTQ_Symbols.jpg

The PRIDE study is the first of its kind. It aims to follow the same large group of LGBTQ people over the span of the next few decades. Enrollement is open to anyone who resides within the United States, identifies as a gender or sexual minority, and is over 18, its enrollment has surpassed 6,000 since launching in May.

We still lack a comprehensive understanding of the ways that being an LGBTQ person can influence one’s overall health, or of health disparities within the LGTBQ community itself. Researchers, Juno Obedin-Maliver and Mitchell Lunn, at the University of California–San Francisco are hoping to close that gap.

“Sexual and gender minorities make up between 2 and 6 percent of the population, however sexual orientation and gender identity are rarely asked about in health studies and they’re not included in fundamental metrics like the Census,” said Juno Obedin-Maliver, one of the principal investigators with the landmark effort, which is aptly titled the Population Research in Identity and Disparities for Equality Study — more simply referred to as the PRIDE Study. “It’s critical we have visibility into the health and health care experiences of these populations so we know where to direct our efforts. Without data, we’re flying blind.”

One of the big barriers we often found trying to encourage people to teach medical students, doctors or other health care providers about LGBTQ+ people was they said, “Well, there wasn’t enough evidence about the health care needs of the community.” And we kept giving lectures and complaining that the studies weren’t being done. We knew that health disparities were there, but we didn’t know how bad, how deep, how broad the problems were, or how comprehensive, because there wasn’t inclusion often in national studies. So Mitch and I said, “We’re both researchers, we’re both clinicians. Let’s stop complaining and do something about it.”

The goal is to eventually enroll about 100,000 people and follow them over the next 30 years, collecting data through an annual questionnaire. Questions will cover a range of health and social topics, such as physical activity, sleep, mental health, quality of life, insurance status, emergency care use, access to care, income, educational attainment, and family and social connections. 

“People are excited — it feels like they’re hungry to be heard and represented,” Obedin-Maliver said. “The PRIDE Study is by and for the community. Yes, it’s academically rigorous, but it’s also a labor of love and a commitment to giving back.”

For more information or to enroll in the PRIDE Study, which is based at the University of California-San Francisco, visit https://pridestudy.org.

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Topics: LGBTQ, LGBTQ Healthcare, LGBTQ community, LGBTQ health disparities, Pride study

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