DiversityNursing Blog

Do Health Exchange policies Change the Game for Full-Time Nurses?

Posted by Wilson Nunnari

Fri, Feb 28, 2014 @ 08:43 AM

by

For: http://onlinelpntorn.org

8345137730 a434ab6f65 m

It just occurred to me that the new health exchange insurance policies could change the nursing career marketplace and give nurses a lot of new employment options: we can play job Tetris. Why? Read on.

Before the individual policies were available, nurses without spouses or another source of health insurance were bound to full-time work with benefits unless they opted to live dangerously. Individual policies were just totally unaffordable (I used to pay about $1,000 per month for an individual policy when I was self-employed). Now they are affordable, and they are particularly so if you consider the salary differential between full-time and PRN hourly wages. It is usually significant.

This one factor allows some mix-and-match in job searches. Perhaps your dream job has a part-time position available, so you take that and pick up PRN shifts somewhere else. Perhaps you have interests in two areas, so you find PRN positions in both. Perhaps it even works out financially for you to work full-time hours as a PRN nurse where you already are, if you work at one of the hospitals where PRN nurses can always pick and choose hours (this plan will not work if PRN hours are what they were intended to be and not guaranteed).

Disclaimer: this does not include other benefits such as retirement contributions and term life insurance that are generally offered, nor does it generally offer paid time off. Speaking as someone who was self-employed for a decade, I can readily state that employer matching for retirement and paid time off are benefits worth accepting a lower hourly rate than I would get for PRN status. However, I know that for many people health insurance is the sticking point, and for those people a whole new world may have just opened up.

Of course, your mileage may vary with the exchange policies versus a group insurance policy with an employer. I have found so far that with mine, the benefits are either similar to or better than the group policy I used to have, and I even bought a lower-tier policy because I thought it would be much more temporary than it has ended up being. They really do cover preventive screens and such at 100%. They really do pay what they say they will for copays and prescriptions, and this was not the case for my group policy. There was always an exception. As I say, this is my mileage only.

Just think, though, of the possibilities. This is important given the tight job market for nurses right now. What if you were not tied to benefits? Do you have a hobby or a sideline you could monetize and be a nurse two shifts per week? Do you have a previous career you could still put to use part time and pick up shifts now and then as a nurse?

Thinking of job opportunities this way opens up a new range of options if you are willing to, I hate to say it, think outside the box. Just keep in mind the question, “What if I didn’t have to look just in the full-time section?”

Topics: full-time, nurses, nursing career, Toward a More Diverse Health Care Workforce

Nurse Todd retires after 61 years of caring

Posted by Alycia Sullivan

Wed, Jun 05, 2013 @ 01:39 PM

describe the image

By  Jennifer Smola 

Sixty-one years after graduating from Mount Carmel College of Nursing, one of the school’s first black graduates is finally hanging up her stethoscope.

June Todd, 83, retired yesterday from Dr. Charles Tweel’s family-medicine practice on the Northwest Side. Todd graduated from Mount Carmel in 1952, in a class of 52 nurses. All were women, and, for the first time, four were black.

Todd, who lives in Worthington, attended Harding High School in Marion, north of Columbus. She considered studying library science, but her school librarian told her she would have a hard time getting a job in the North because of her race.

“I said, ‘That’s not going to work,’  ” Todd recalled. “So I decided I wanted to become a nurse."

Her race seldom made a difference during her nursing career, she said. And she has fond memories of her time at Mount Carmel.

“I loved the nuns,” she said. “Everybody was so nice.”

Tweel described Todd as a “ball of energy” who never missed work. She’s popular not only among her co-workers but with patients, who “like seeing her more than they like seeing me,” he said.

Enid Patterson, a patient for 10 years, said she was sad to see Todd go.

“She’s not just my nurse,” Patterson said. “She’s my friend.”

When Tweel hired Todd 13 years ago, she planned to stay only a year or two, she said, but she stuck around because she liked the work.

Her co-workers said she brought humor and energy to the office every day.

“She’s the only 80-some-odd-year-old woman that has an opinion on everything from Hillary Clinton to why Chris and Rihanna should not be together,” co-worker Beth Shahan said. “She’s very with-it and hip.”

Though Todd is retired, she says she’s not done working. She plans to volunteer at local nursing homes and perhaps at a Worthington library.

Topics: black, RN, race, nursing career, retirement, Mount Carmel College of Nursing

The Single-most Important Question to Ask All RNs in an Interview

Posted by Wilson Nunnari

Mon, Apr 15, 2013 @ 08:03 PM

by Jennifer Mensik for ERE

Regardless of the interview style or methodology used, there is one question that everyone should ask of a registered nurse in an interview. This includes all positions, from staff RN to Chief Nursing Officer.

What is your definition of nursing?

This helps you to sort out whether you have a professional-role-based RN or one who might only be there for the paycheck. A professional-role-based RN is a nurse who understands the complexities of the profession and is committed to placing the patient first, as opposed to a tas- based RN who is there to just clock time and take home a paycheck. If your organization prefers behavioral-based questions, take that question to the next level as a two-part question by asking the RN candidate to give you an example of when they exemplified the definition they just gave you.
nurse
You might say, “Are not all RNs professionals?” One just needs to understand the components of a profession to know that there are RNs in the profession who are not professional. Let me explain by starting with the sort of definition you are looking for and then I will touch on the difference between a technical and professional RN.

The American Nurses Association defines nursing as “the protection, promotion, and optimization of health and abilities, prevention of illness and injury, alleviation of suffering through diagnosis and treatment of human response, and advocacy in the care of individuals, families, communities, and populations.” That is a long definition that many RNs will not be able to give you verbatim. However, the professional RN should be able to talk about and say things that are of a very similar nature. The responses between the professional and technical RN will be very different. Most times when I have asked this question, it has stumped many nurses, or was the one they needed the most time to think about before they were able to give their response.

The type of answers you want from a professional RN are statements or an explanation of caring, kindness, ethical, and wholistic care of the entire patient, an understanding that the RN is a professional who is accountable for themselves, and understands that they have a duty to society to place the patient first.

The technical, less desirable answer is when the RN describes their profession as a set of tasks, like medication administration, bathing, assessments, budgets, staffing, or worse yet, someone who assists the physician. While you might expect your RN candidate to do those things and to be competent in those areas, the professional RN understands that. It is a given that part of the professional responsibilities is to carry out tasks and orders, but it is in the manner in which they do it. The technical RN does not understand how to be professional, or worse yet, may not want to be a professional.

Can you teach a technical RN to be professional? I suppose, but only if they are open to it. This is not a simple task they can learn, but a way of being. A professional RN understands their role as a RN, their accountability to the patient and the family, their coworkers, and the organization, and will hold others to the highest standard of patient care.

This type of RN embodies what we want to see in our nurses, like Florence Nightingale. Florence could easily point out the technical nurse. Those who only work as a RN because it’s a good paying, stable job, and where you only have to work three 12-hour shifts; the one who does the minimum to maintain their employment and the minimum to maintain their own education, skills, and professional standards. It is those who do not say anything when another RN or staff member may be jeopardizing patient safety as it’s “not their responsibility” to hold others accountable. Professional RNs do hold each other accountable for quality and safe patient care.

Your next steps:

Recruiters: Have a discussion with your nurse executive on whether this is a question they would like to you ask. Talk with you nurse executive about their nursing philosophy for the organization and how they would like to see RN candidates answer that question.

Nurse managers: What is your philosophy about nursing? Can you articulate it and share with your recruiters so that the right candidates could be screened early in the process? Even if used in the early stages of recruitment,  still include this question in the onsite interview process with the candidate and yourself or the team. Ensure your team who maybe interviewing the RN candidate understands this question and the type of response you want.

As organizations struggle to improve quality measures and patient satisfaction, which type of RN do you want on your team? The professional RN will help your organization obtain success in these areas. If an RN can give you a professional-based answer for the definition of nursing, you are halfway there in choosing the right candidate for your patients and organization.

Topics: nursing student, nursing, nurses, career, nursing career

Salary: Top paying specialties–perioperative

Posted by Alycia Sullivan

Tue, Feb 05, 2013 @ 02:01 PM

BY SCRUBS EDITOR

 

Thinkstock | istockphotoEver wonder what the top 10 best paying nursing specialties are?. So far we’ve covered the top 3 – #1: certified RN anesthetists, #2 orthopedics and #3 geriatrics. This week, at number 4, we’re taking a look at perioperative nursing.

Nurses in this field make between $61,000 and $108,000 (high end, which you get by being an advanced practice nurse). It’s the perfect gig for OR nurses who don’t want to deal with anesthesia. Typically, it’s a good idea to have Basic Life Support and Advanced Cardiac Life Support certification.

If you’re a new nurse you may be wondering: What the heck is perioperative nursing? Quite simply, it’s the specialty that works with patients who are about to have operative or other invasive procedures. Perioperative nurses work closely with a range of medical personnel from surgeons, nurse anesthetists, surgical technologists and nurse practitioners. On a typical day you could find yourself performing preoperative, intraoperative or postoperative care.

 

Topics: nursing, nursing career, specialty, top paying, perioperative

Click me

ABOUT US

DiversityNursing.com is a national “niche” website for Nurses from student nurses up to CNO’s. We are a Career Job Board, Community and Information Resource for all Nurses regardless of age, race, gender, religion, education, national origin, sexual orientation, disability or physical characteristics. 

Subscribe to Email Updates

Posts by Topic

see all