Florence Nightingale, a woman whose name is synonymous with nursing, made famous the statement, "Every woman is a nurse." Popular concepts of nursing are so entrenched in feminine presumptions that we even refer to breastfeeding as "nursing". For men who choose this stereotypically female profession, redefining nursing and care giving in gender-neutral terms is an uphill battle.
Perhaps you are experiencing a time of professional transition. Perhaps you are a newly initiated empty-nester. Or, perhaps you find that, after flipping to the evening news and witnessing yet another heart-wrenching scene of poverty and illness, you really mean it when you say to yourself, "I've got to do something about this."
It has been labeled and promoted as the "5th Vital Sign". Still, pain continues to be unassessed and inadequately treated.
Studies have found many barriers to the management of pain. Due to the highly subjective and personal nature of pain patients may inadvertently sabotage attempts to obtain a full pain assessment and provide subsequent treatment.
Recently the media has been having a great time causing sensationalism around the "Super Bug" and its effects on society. MRSA is no stranger to the health care provider.
MRSA was so named because of the resistances of Staphylococcus aureus to methicillin, oxacillin, penicillin, and the commonly used amoxicillin. These types of infections happen most commonly in those with weakened immune systems, typically in hospitals and healthcare facilities. Now, the infection is appearing in the form of abscesses, boils, and other pus-filled lesions, in otherwise healthy people without contact within the healthcare system. This is being termed community-associated MRSA or CA-MRSA.
We want to take care of people. This, I would venture, would be the near universal response to what brought us down a career path towards nursing. We're all too familiar with the obstacles that prevent us from achieving this goal to the degree we would like. Nurse-to-patient ratios make it difficult to deliver the kind of attentive one-on-one care we envisioned as students. Seemingly endless amounts of paperwork tie us to a desk with a pen in our hand when we would rather be at the bedside with a patient's hand in ours. We also know the toll stress and professional pressure can place on us personally. When we focus on others' needs and neglect our own, we wind up fueling our addictions, food or cigarettes or hours of reality TV. Or, we're just plain exhausted. How well we know what burn-out looks like.
In This Issue
Liz Di Bernardo