Archives for May 2012

Visiting Nurses offers program on advanced directives

(Darien News Online) The majority of adults report they approve of laws allowing them to be involved in their healthcare choices at the end of life. Yet, each day in the U.S., thousands of critically important end-of-life decisions are being made without the benefit of advanced planning, according to New Canaan’s Visiting Nurse & Hospice of Fairfield County.

Visiting Nurses will present a program called Plan for No Regrets on Wednesday, June 13, at 1 p.m. at theLapham Community Center in Waveny Park in New Canaan. The program will provide important information about Connecticut’s advanced directives law, the appointment of a health care representative, and how to go about completing your own advanced directive. [Read more…]

Nurses, Patients Voice Frustration Over Avoidable Hospital Staffing Crisis

( It’s a universal health care frustration: the emergency room. Endless waits and doctors who treat patients like products on an assembly line. A new study confirms the exasperation: A large portion of patients believe they’re being treated poorly by an overstretched system.

According to the survey, conducted by National Public Radio, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Harvard School of Public Health, about one in every three patients, who spent at least one night in a hospital in the past year, reported that “nurses weren’t available when needed or didn’t respond quickly to requests for help.” Though only a minority reported being dissatisfied overall, many respondents felt the hospital’s traditional frontline staff hadn’t given them adequate attention. [Read more…]

San Francisco Nurse Learns Life Lessons from Navajo Nation

(Martinez Patch) The amenities of modern American life are plentiful. Surrounded by convenience, ease and comfort — freeways and drive-throughs, Wi-fi and air conditioning — simplicity grows ever sentimental, like a relic from an ancient past.

But that past is present, right here in America. Susan Cogan knows because she lived it — on an Indian reservation in Arizona.

Cogan spent just under a year with the Navajo tribe in Kayenta as a public health nurse, leaving a large family home in Pleasant Hill for a trailer on the reservation. Her and her husband Bruce explored the deserts of Arizona, New Mexico, Utah and Colorado, and returned to the Bay Area with a stack of experiences, a mailbox full of emails, and a new appreciation for living minimally. [Read more…]

Manatee Memorial cited for nurse shortage

(Herald-Tribune) Manatee Memorial Hospital’s leaders say they have been working since March to hire 45 more nurses. But the recruitment did not happen fast enough to avert a state inspection in April, which uncovered nurse staffing levels considered too low for patient safety, especially at night, state records show.

According to an Agency for Health Care Administration report released this month, nine nursing units in the hospital had one less nurse on duty than required on most dates during a 12-day period in early April, with night shift shortages most frequent. Manatee Memorial responded in writing that it would “recruit additional full-time and part-time staff.” [Read more…]

Study Shows Transition to Practice Programs Get Nurses Employed

(PRnewswire) Today, the California Institute for Nursing & Health Care (CINHC) released its Evaluation Report of four San Francisco Bay Area pilot New Graduate Nurse Transition to Practice Programs (RN Transition Programs). The evaluation, led by the University of San Francisco, found that the programs are making a difference in the confidence and competence of new nurse graduates and increasing their employment opportunities in hospitals and out-of-hospital settings. As of May 2012, 79 percent of the nurses who participated in the four programs have secured jobs. “These RN Transition Programs improved new graduates’ hiring eligibility,” said CINHC’s Project Manager Nikki West. “And although these programs were launched in a difficult economic climate with a high state unemployment rate, they can enhance the preparation of nurses for employment at any time.” [Read more…]

Nurses: On the Front Line of Care

( Talking to nurses about their career paths, certain themes recur. They love the work.

They especially love the variety—the fact they can segue from specialty to specialty, setting to setting, if they so choose.
Job juggling is common. Many double as nurses and teachers, or patch together several part-time gigs (school nursing alongside hospital nursing, for example).

None of this is terribly surprising. What is surprising, perhaps, is that none of the nurses profiled for this story grew up dreaming of being the next Florence Nightingale. Some were on their way to other careers when a fork in the road appeared, and others grew up in an era when a woman’s career options were limited and chose nursing because it seemed the least odious. [Read more…]

Leader in Medical Staffing Highlights Four Things to Know About Travel Nursing Jobs Read

( Aureus Medical Group, a nationwide leader in healthcare staffing, shares insight on the four things every travel nurse should know about the rewarding, yet fast-paced career of travel nursing. This list of basic information may be of help to those considering pursuing a medical career in nursing or for those who are making a transition from a traditional RN to a travel professional. [Read more…]

Passion for job drives male nurse

(The Omaha) When he was taking classes last year at Iowa Western Community College, Nick Kuster stood out.

The Neola, Iowa, resident — who now works in the emergency department at Council Bluffs’ Mercy Hospital — was one of just four men among the dozens of women working on their nursing degrees.

Kuster, 33, said he’d never considered nursing as a career path until a few years ago, when he was looking for a new line of work. He’d been working in family businesses, painting with his father and doing landscaping work with his brother, but he’d also begun pitching in with the local volunteer fire department. [Read more…]

Nursing specialty grows in popularity

(The Patients at Arrowhead Medical Center here sometimes call Marcia Hillman “doctor.” She understands the confusion, but gently corrects them.

She’s actually an advanced registered nurse practitioner, so she can see patients, diagnose and treat their maladies and prescribe medication — just as a family practice doctor.

Patients “can’t tell the difference,” Hillman said. [Read more…]

Effective communication means better patient safety

( A new report on patient safety and satisfaction rates in hospitals across the United States found that hospitals with the highest patient ratings in physician and nursing communication on average have fewer patient safety events.

The analysis of patient safety data for hospitalizations between 2008 and 2010 was conducted by HealthGrades, the self-proclaimed leading provider of information to help consumers make an informed decision about a physician or hospital. [Read more…]