November 29th, 2004

BullWinkle

You Gotta Be Kidding Me

OK, I admit it: I did not grow up planning to be a Registered Nurse, it wasn't on my dance card during elementary school, puberty, high school, or even the first two years I spent in college. Things happened, my Rich Uncle Sam gave me an all-expenses-paid scenic tour of the world and all I had to do was take care of people who got hurt or sick. I learned there's something pretty cool about helping people out that way, and even though I knew the day would eventually come when I would say, "I've had enough of sick people now," I became a Registered Nurse.

If I do say so myself, a fairly good one, and one who believes that enriching the profession as a whole is part and parcel of what and who I am as a Registered Nurse. Could just be that I grew up in the Boomer Generation, and we (as a whole) catch some of that work ethic thingy. Still, the leap to paraphrase J.F.K.'s quote "Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country," into what I can do for my profession proved a very short step rather than anything difficult.

Keep these thoughts in mind: the average age of a Registered Nurse is now around 48 (particularly true of RN's who practice in the Operating Room, as I do), and there is a shortage of Registered Nurses across the board. This includes faculty at schools of nursing to teach new nurses, and nurses who are practicing. This shortage is so severe that numerous locations are looking at ways and means to hire non-nursing unliceneced personnel to provide professional nursing care. Think about that, oh ye who are or will be receiving health care...

So, a colleague, mentor, friend of mine points out this little bit of sensationalism.

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It may not make any difference at all. On the other hand, it's one of those things I care about.

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    pissed off pissed off