Nursing & Healthcare Directories on: The Nursefriendly
Nurses Views of The Nursing Profession
Tips To A Good Start In The Nursing Profession
By Diane Hartley

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Tips To A Good Start In The Nursing Profession

My name is Diane and I have been in the nursing profession for 12 years. In those years I have seen very many changes with this profession. One of the first changes was in DRG's. This for those of you who do not know what they are is diagnosis related groups.

This is where the hospitals are allocated a set number of days for each illness. The patient's insurance company would not pay for the patient's stay in the hospital past that set number of days without a physician justifying the additional time.

This was one of the major reasons that home health boomed so well for a while.

At that time there was a big nursing shortage and the colleges couldn't train the nurses fast enough to satisfy the demand for them.

Well times have evolved since then. Now the graduates have a hard time getting jobs, since they have no prior experience. There are still some hospitals that will hire new graduates, you just have to find out where they are in your area.

Today HMO'S are controlling the hospitals even more. They are telling the hospitals, home health agencies, and the physicians which illnesses they are going to pay for and how much they are going to pay to them.

If any one of these organizations happen to code the illness wrong , they run a very high risk of not being paid at all. This makes it even harder for the physicians to pay their staff well, and has caused the hospitals to downsize their staff to help cut budgets. With this in mind, going into the nursing profession needs to be something you have a dedication to.

My first suggestion to you is not to get discouraged by this. One thing that you can do when you start in nursing school is to find out if any of the local hospitals have what is called an extern program. This is a program which is set up by the hospitals through the local nursing schools. This is where the student in their third year of nursing school can work at their hospital on a part time basis. You have a preceptor who tries to get you as many learning experiences as possible in your last two years of the nursing program. This can really benefit you in several ways. One, it gives you more experience so you don't feel so nervous when you finally start on your on as a graduate nurse. Number two it really helps when it's time to take boards cause boards are sometimes geared to realistic situations and if you haven't been there you may not know the answer. Last, but not least it can secure a position with that hospital when it comes time for you to graduate. Since, they have been literally training you for two years, they want to get the most for the time and money they have spent on you. Also it can give you some extra money while you are in school.

After getting through this process. There are still some obstacles for a new nurse to over come.

1. Remember to be a nurse you have to be flexible and to change with the times, cause believe me it's like a revolving door.

2. Find your niche whether it may be OB, med-surg, oncology, etc. This makes you feel more confident about what you do and it will minimize burn-out.

3. Always when calling a physician: Have all of your facts, vital signs, condition of the patient all the way down to when the patient had his last BM. Believe me this will save you a lot of time and embarrassment.

4. Offer to help your peers. The best way to gain a place is to show your peers you are part of this team and are willing to do your part.

5. Do not let the physicians overwhelm you. Some still think that there word is God. Don't let them fool you. They need you, cause without you their orders can't be carried out. Remember verbal or telephone orders are a courtesy to the physician and he needs to respect the fact that at 3 o'clock in the morning you are willing to write an order for him so he doesn't have to get out of bed. Respect is a two way street.

6. And last but not least: you have the right to refuse any order given to you if it compromises your nursing license or compromises your patient's safety. This is your right.

In closing, nursing is very much a rewarding experience and I have enjoyed it, though some times have been hectic. If you follow some of these guidelines, you will find it can make your career a little easier to deal with. Reward of caring for your patient and knowing you made them less frightened and that you contributed in the process of making them well, can sometimes be better than a paycheck!



The Shortcut URL To This Section Is: http://www.nursefriendly.com/views/


In this section, you can hear from Registered Nurses, Licensed Practical Nurses, etc, new and old on why they would or would not recommend going into Nursing as a career. Our articles are frank, uncensored and brutally honest. We hope they'll help you make your decision if you're unsure about nursing being for you.

It is not our intent to "scare you off" from Nursing, some of our reviews are quite positive. It is our intention to help you go into Nursing with "open eyes" and aware of what you can reasonably expect as students and entry-level nurses.

Do you have questions or comments about our articles? Like to express an opinion? Visit our forums and make it known!

See also:
Licensed Practical Nurses, http://www.nursefriendly.com/lpn
Registered Nurses, http://www.nursefriendly.com/rn/
To Stay In Nursing or Not: http://www.nursingdiscussions.com/stay


Nursing, Not For Everyone, Not For Most People by Andrew Lopez, RN
Nurses are Licensed Professionals who's practice is regulated by Nurse Practice Acts, and the State Board of Nursing of each State. Nursing is a ...

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The Beauty of Nursing by Rebekah Hinton, BSN, RN, Virginia Nurses Views of The Nursing Profession:"I have been a caretaker for as long as I can remember. I am the oldest of four daughters and have always been a second Mother to my siblings. Going into nursing seemed to be a logical choice for me. As a student I was eager to learn and worked very hard to get the best education possible. I entered into a Bachelor of Science in nursing program without knowing the difference between a RN program and a BSN program."

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Nursing: How Do I Find Out If It's For Me? by Angela Eichenlaub, RN, BSN:"The face of nursing has changed" or "Nursing is not what it used to be" are phrases I often hear from seasoned staff. I wish I knew what nursing "used to be" so I could compare! My own personal advice to anyone considering a career in nursing is to take your reason for entering the profession into account. Some go into nursing for money, some because they have always wanted to and some people go into nursing because they don't know what else to do."

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To Be Or Not To Be, by Sharon Jones, RN, Ohio Nurses Views of The Nursing Profession:"To Be…Or Not To Be… was never the question for me. I had always been a caretaker of sorts even at a very young age. The decision to return to work was based more on a career that I could relate to and be employed at. To be it was… and I started school at a local college for a Registered Nurse program. Almost two years into school, all my pre- req. courses completed and a waiting list to get into the nursing classes (a very unbelievable thing looking back- too many students- many had to wait) forced me to change course of action that lead to LPN school."

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Twenty Years of Nursing by James E. Meekins, North Carolina Nursing Views:"Thirty years ago I walked into the Navy recruiters office; laid off, without a real skill and signed up to be a Navy Hospital Corpsman (medic). I learned basic patient care---and basic first aid; and learned to work under the direction of a physician or nurse. I enjoyed what I did, the pride of being part of a team; accomplishment of a common goal, first aid in the field with Marines, or care of a patient in the hospital. . . ."

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Nursing: Pros and Cons by Christy Picton, RN, BSN, Illinois Nurses' Views of The Nursing Profession:"I struggle when asked whether I would recommend the nursing profession as a career. In the end it comes to down to a weighing of the pros and cons. Let me begin by introducing you to some of my patients, my "pros" so to speak. . . . "

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"One of The Lucky Ones" by Christine Cruz, Minnesota Nurses Views of The Nursing Profession:"My name is Chris. I have been an RN for ten-years. I have worked in a wide variety of nursing settings, from home care, long-term care to telephone triage, clinics and nursing management. Upon graduation from nursing school in, May, 1993, I had eagerly anticipated a new RN position at a local hospital, in one of its med-surgical units. . . ."

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You Want to Be a Nurse? -- Better Leave Your Heart Behind by Pennye Diane Morgan Shaw R.N., Texas Nurses Views of the Nursing Profession:"So you're thinking about being a nurse? You probably are a person who wants to make a difference, to help others, to be a compassionate healer. Are these are the same reasons I entered the nursing profession about 9 years ago. I had been through the emotional experience of watching my father being diagnosed with colon cancer. I had been by his side though radiation therapy, and though surgery and recovery. I watched as he struggled to cope with the drastic changes to his body as he tried to return to a normal life. . . . "

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My Advice for New and Potential Nurses, by Pam Lowry, Illinois Nurses Views of the Nursing Profession:"According to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN), "The United States is in the midst of a nursing shortage that is projected to intensify as baby boomers age and the need for health care grows." They also state enrollments in nursing colleges are at a six-year decline. According to JAMA there will be a shortage of 400,000 nurses in the U.S. by the year 2020. AACN goes on to state there are declines in nursing faculty leading to limitations on enrollment, the population of R.N.'s is the lowest it has been in 20 years, and vacancy rates at hospitals are high. . . "

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An Insight Into Nursing by Leah Stockdale, R.N., B.S.N. Maryland Nurses Views of the Nursing Profession:"Although I am extremely proud of being a nurse, I will have to say that I am not sure if I would choose the profession if I could go back. At the same time, I probably would not choose any career in the health care industry. In my opinion, as far as hospital nursing is concerned, the negatives outweigh the positives. That is why I am currently in the process of applying my nursing skills and education to another field. . . "

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A Letter To A Future Nurse by Kristina Rzanca, LPN, Michigan Nurses Views:"Being a Nurse is a career you can be spiritually, emotionally and financially satisfied with. In this day and age this is a unique opportunity, but it is not for everyone. A special person with qualities such as empathy, compassion, intelligence and above all patience should only apply. . . . "

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To Be A Nurse Takes A Special Kind Of Person By Vicky Oliver, LPN:"As an LPN for the last ten years I believe I could give some insight on my experience as a nurse. I am the type of person who is always doing something for others instead of me. My experiences in nursing consist of Medical Surgical, Doctors' Office, Emergency Room, Surgery, GI Lab, Urology, Utilization Review, Recovery Room, and the Nursing Home. Anyone that goes into the nursing profession needs to be a very caring person, someone who wants to give to others and someone that is very dedicated. . . "

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After Fourteen Years As An RN, I Am Not Sorry For My Choice By Lynn Kash, RN:"Would I recommend the nursing profession? That is a good question that requires a lot of thought. Nursing was not my first choice of careers. I studied accounting in college, and after working in the business world, decided it was not for me. I fell into a job as a nursing assistant and found patient care to my liking. I then started nursing school and the rest is history. . . .

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A New York BSN's Point of View, By Melina Begun, BSN, RN, Clinical Administrative Liaison Nurse:"Nursing is suffering. Thousands of caring people enter into this profession every year only to become disillusioned by its reality. When I first started to study nursing, I immediately felt a connection with its history and our potential to be leaders in the medical community. Excited by all of the knowledge and skills I acquired in my Ivy league nursing program, I was astonished by the harsh reality of nursing in today's hospitals when I started working as a staff nurse. . .

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Tips To A Good Start In The Nursing Profession by Diane Hartley:"My name is Diane and I have been in the nursing profession for 12 years. In those years I have seen very many changes with this profession. One of the first changes was in DRG's. This for those of you who do not know what they are is diagnosis related groups. . . "

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See Also: Certified Nursing Assistants, CNAs, Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists, Disabled Nurses, Male Nurses, Men In Nursing, Legal Nurse Consultants, Licensed Practical/Vocational Nurses (LPNs/LVNs), Registered Nurses


Please choose from the following (Links will open up a new window):
Nurses Views Recommending The Profession,
Nurses views Not Recommending The Profession.

Choose Nurses Views by State: Alabama, California, Florida, Indiana, Louisiana, Michigan, Missouri, New Jersey, New York State, North Carolina, Pennsylvania Tennessee, Texas, Virginia

Male Gender Bias - Entrance to No Mans Land by Nurseman
Are you a male and thinking about entering the world of nursing? Have you ever wondered why they're so few men in nursing? If you are young, single ...

    Gender Bias Against Male Nurses:
    http://www.nursingdiscussions.com/gender

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      Do I want My Daughter to be a Nurse by Raye
      I am not sure why I became a nurse. I enjoy the smile on the face of someone I have helped. I worked Emergency and got quick fixes and instant ...

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      Is your life worth the BIG BUCKS? by SurgRN911
      Why are patients and families feeling they are getting less attention, and sometimes less than adequate care in a hospital setting? I wrote an ...

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      It's not all bad! by LauraRN
      Wow.. a chance to give my opinion on nursing.. here goes.. :) When I was in college, I thought I wanted to be a math teacher. As I got higher in ...

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      Requirement: Have an off-beat sense of humor by clooneyfan A review by of my favorite writers (SurgRN911) about the nursing profession prompted me to write my own review. You can read her original review at ...

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      Nursing Is In My Blood! by Dunkjam
      When I was a little girl I always thought that I would be a singer and marry Paul Anka! I thought I would live a glamorous life and travel around the ...

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      Where Are Our Leaders? by Moonflowerck
      I have been an R.N. for 28 years. My range of experience encompasses nearly all aspects of critical care and pediatrics. I am a bedside nurse; that is my forte. I give quality nursing care; I am a good teacher; I am empathetic and intuitive. However, I am not a leader. My experiences in various leadership roles during my career were neither fulfilling nor very productive.

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      Nursing: Is It A Career For You? by Bobstein
      When I was faced with choosing a career I wasn't clear exactly what I wanted to do with my life. I enjoyed the sciences and helping people, and with high unemployment rates in the mid-1970's I chose to enter the nursing profession.

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      10 CONCEPTS TO CONSIDER WHEN DECIDING IF THE NURSING PROFESSION IS FOR YOU
      by melissasrn
      Pros: The opportunity to make a difference in someone's life; decent pay; flexible schedules. Cons: Short staffing; floating requirements; little respect; dealing with bodily functions.

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      An LPN's Story of Progress by: NJNurse
      The Decision to Become A Nurse. When I was starting to decide on a career after high school I wanted to cry.

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      The Nursing Shortage: Reasons Nurses Are Leaving The Profession by Rebel5877
      All across America, There are shortages of Registered Nurses (RN's) and Licensed Practical/Vocational Nurses (LPN's/LVN's), and Nurse's Aides entering ...

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      Response to NJ's work in progress by jt1013
      There is a shortage of nurses. That is a given. I have a large amount of respect for LPN's. My sister is one in Kentucky. She has been one for 32 ...

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      My Opinion of The Nursing Profession, by emsopinion
      I have been a nurse for over twenty two years. In that time I have worked in many different fields of medicine.

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      Feast or Famine by lovepepsi
      Pros: the feeling you get when you helps someone
      Cons: short staffing, not being able to save everyone

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      See also:

      "Burnout in my 5th year...another nursing statistic", Aboutmyjob.com:"I always knew I would end up in a helping profession. Nursing seemed like the perfect choice. It combined my natural curiosity about health and science with the giving, hands on, human interactions of bedside care. I also knew that nursing offers a great deal of flexability within the profession. You can change specialties, change shifts, and work in a variety of settings. Before I decided to study nursing, I considered teaching,conservation and journalism. Prior to becoming an RN, I worked in recreation/parks, the foodservice industry, and held a factory/production type job. I graduated a few years ago with my BS in Nursing. I certainly don't regret having gone that route, but to be honest I feel disenchanted with the health care environment and nursing in general.It certainly is nothing like what I thought it would be.The hospital setting is like a pressure cooker type of environment."
      http://www.aboutmyjob.com/575/burnout-in-my-5th-yearanother-nursing-statistic/

      "I am getting out of nursing to become a teacher", Aboutmyjob.com:"Hi. I made the decision to get out of the nursing profession about two years ago. I have been an RN for three years. I have floated in ER, ICU, Med/Surg and Labor and Delivery. In the back of my mind I always thought, "working conditions will get better with the more experience I have". I finally have come to the conclusion that my working conditions are not changing, in fact, are getting worse. I come home every night with knots in my shoulders from the stress that I go through. I too get physically and mentally strained from being a nurse. Families are so insultive and expect things to happen ASAP. Do they not realize that I am running around with my head cut off trying to keep up with all the requests, duties, and paper work?"
      http://www.aboutmyjob.com/601/i-am-getting-out-of-nursing-to-become-a-teacher/

      "Unhappy in nursing profession too....10 year RN", Aboutmyjob.com:"I have been an RN for nearly 10 years now and I must agree with many of the others who wrote their stories. I always wanted to be a nurse, because I like people and thought I would really want to work helping them. But, the reality of the job is utterly overwhelming. I've tried long-term care,home health, dialysis nursing, physician office and now in-hospital on a Rehab unit. I have yet to really find anything I loved. We are almost always short-staffed both nurses and aides. We are being pulled to other floors now due to the shortage of nurses. I was pulled to a MICU and I've never done that type of nursing ever!! I was a nervous wreck, these patients were very high aquity, on tele, multiple lines etc. I received no orientation, just here are your 8 patients...go to it. It was nerve-wracking."
      http://www.aboutmyjob.com/554/unhappy-in-nursing-profession-too10-year-rn/


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      Nursing Chat, Nurse Discussion Forums:
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Last updated by Andrew Lopez, RN on Wednesday, August 19, 2014


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