Observations and Assessments

Notions too small for a blog post all in one place.

April Foolishness. I guess I got  — or more likely annoyed — a few of you with my little April Fool’s prank. In case you missed it, I faked a news report from Trout Creek, Montana (pop. 261) stating the local hospital was going to fire all it nurses and replace them with housekeepers. I even put up a picture of some hospital in India, complete with palm trees (in Montana!). Some of you waxed quite indignant before realizing it was the First of April. What’s interesting is how readily people believed it — which speaks volumes about nurses’ perceptions about how they are valued by their employers. Which is to say, not much.

Nurse goes all postal on Craigslist. This epic rant has been making the rounds — those with delicate sensibilities may want to avert their eyes:

Well, after a year of getting rejected I have finally decided to give nursing the bird. FUCK YOU NURSING FIELD! Too bad the schools and media are still insisting that people go to RN school. Believe me THERE IS NO FUCKING SHORTAGE! New grads are considered garbage. On top of that, the degree serves no purpose in any other setting. BSN is a complete waste of time and money.

I know, “some people got jobs”. That does not justify the majority (1000’s) who did not and are now working retail for minimum wage. There is something fundamentally wrong with this country. My school counselors, nursing instructors, media and nurses I know urged me to go into nursing. As soon as I got my degree and the check to the school cleared I heard the unmistakable sound of the door to nursing closing—slamming actually. And it is not just the economy. Hospitals turning huge profits stopped new grad programs and hire foreigners.

It is over. I am a stale grad and I am out of options. The new graduates fresh out of their precepts will be flooding the market to add to the already rancid oversaturated pool of disgruntled STALE GRADS. So, I guess giving up a nice job for school, dedicating 6 years (yes, I was foolish enough to get the BSN), dropping 20 grand and putting up with nursing school stress was all for nothing.

And no, higher education is out for 2 reasons. One, you need RN experience to qualify for any NP program. Second, why would I throw more money at a system that just failed me and ruined my life? It is clear that the educational system is bunk. I am completely embarrassed at the education I experienced at the California State University–It is appauling.

I hate nursing. I hate it so fucking much now. The true colors of the profession are now clear. So, now society can have a derelict because that is what I intend to become. I now plan to make a living mooching off the system.

It would probably take a year of posting to unpack all of this. Suffice to say, I do have the tiniest bit of sympathy for her, as I graduated at the nadir of nursing joblessness in the ’90s and was forced to work part-time for the first three years of my career. That being said, I wonder at her commitment to the profession, despite the six years of expensive education; one senses she wants her dream job handed to her on a platter. It doesn’t work like that. So I’m with everyone else: don’t let the door hit you on the way out. Or else come to Toronto — I know some 5 North nurses who would love to have you as a colleague — and they’re hiring.

Uterus, uterus, uterus. In another take to the uterus-as-filthy-word story, now you can incorporate your womb. (Thanks Terri!)

Take me to your leader. In case my American friends and readers haven’t noticed, we’re finishing up the second week of a federal election campaign, where the forces of light and the agents of doom and darkness will collide in a colossal battle for the heart and soul of the nation, etc. Being the flaming left-wing commie-pinko-socialist I am, I will prevaricate until the very last minute till inevitably holding my nose and voting Liberal. All which is to say, if I seem more, um, political in the next few weeks, I can’t help it, it’s the environment.

Hope they were praying for epinephrine. Speaking of Members of Parliament, there’s a report in the Le Devoir this morning that three Conservative MPs witnessing a severe allergic reaction on a flight to Taiwan responded by laying on the hands and praying. I guess I slept through that part in my critical care courses where Prayer comes before Airway, Breathing, Circulation. [ Via. ]

Non-nursing blog shout-out:  Worcester College Gardeners — actual professional gardeners charged with the maintenance of 26 acres of grounds surrounding Worcester College , Oxford, U.K. Reading through the blog puts lie to the notion of effortless gardening: it becomes quickly very apparent all those charming, perfect English garden scenes Canadians wax green over are the result of some pretty intensive labour. What I could do with a flock of minions and unlimited cash!

A pair of quacks. I was happy to learn that both Mehmet Oz and Andrew Wakefield, the fraud-mongering anti-vaccination advocate, were recipients of the annual Pigasus Awards. Oz — and any self-respecting  nurse is always glad to see him taken down a notch or two — was given the award for promoting such quackery as energy fields and faith healing and advocating the bereaved call a psychic for consolation. (Why is this jackass still on television?) Wakefield got the award for continuing to peddle his nonsense despite being called out by the Lancet and the British Medical Association.

Mini-rant. To anyone who has cut and paste from this blog: it has come to my attention bits of my writing — which I remind you are not free, in the sense you can use them at will — are being circulated unattributed and altered contrary to the copyright notice on the bottom of this page. Please note that even if you did not see the copyright notice, you are still subject to its provisions. In other words it is your responsibility to ascertain your obligations.

I really don’t mind people lifting my writing so long as it’s unchanged and attributed to me. I actually like it, because it’s free publicity. But when I find my original work altered to the point where my authorship is in doubt, it starts to piss me off. When you don’t link back to me, you become a thief.

P.S. When I write “shit” I mean “shit”, not some milquetoast euphemism you have determined won’t offend your readers — which  incidentally doesn’t nullify the copyright either.

P.P.S. Why do I think it’s a losing battle?


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  1. #1 by Jenn Jilks on Thursday 07 April 2011 - 1148

    Copyright is a losing battle. I find my posts all over the place. There are assholes taking pieces, using high search terms like those in healthcare, to generate web traffic. They make money off the Google ads.

    Like this dude, @HealthcareHelps Stephen Omar
    Do you want additional customers reading your updates to spread the target audience?
    He’s following’ me on Twitter, and is simply someone we might pay to help draw customers to our sites. Thing is, you and I are non-profit, and it really pisses me off!
    Copyscape is a great place to find people who are stealing one’s intellectual property, but it is time consuming. Interesting, too!

  2. #2 by cartoon characters on Thursday 07 April 2011 - 1619

    I missed your April fool’s day post due to vacation, however, interestingly enough, back in the 1980s there was a rumbling about having the cleaning staff do “minor” nursing tasks here in B.C. – taking blood pressures, temperatures, etc…..but there was quite the outcry – and at that time it was next to impossible to get the housekeepers to do THEIR job, never mind add on some nursing duties. So you weren’t too far off!

    re: the nurse who posted on Craigslist. There ARE jobs available in the nursing field….just probably not in the city or the hospital they want. Definitely no nursing shortage here in B.C. if you are willing to move somewhere else other than the lower mainland (and even then, they are still hiring in Vancouver!) It used to be you could just walk in the door and they bent over backwards to talk you into taking their job – anywhere in the USA – but now it’s like any other job….one might have to actually put effort into getting hired. I can understand if there is a spouse in a permanent job and you can’t….but there are so many that think jobs should be handed out with no questions asked.

  3. #3 by The Nerdy Nurse on Monday 11 April 2011 - 1727

    I have read this online a lot. Hospitals aren’t willing to hire new grads as readily. How do they expect to have good quality nurses if they don’t want to help them get started?

  4. #4 by Nurse K on Saturday 16 April 2011 - 0513

    New grads can get jobs in the US, just not the high-fallutin’/high-payin’ hospital jobs. They have to work in assisted livings, nursing homes, clinics, and whatnot first, just like they had to in the 70s. Most can get into a hospital job after a couple of years.

    The funny thing is that a lot of hospitals will not employ you in your CNA/Tech etc. job (forced resignation) after you get your nursing license, and most places won’t consider you unless you pass your boards, so many students have to, like, live with their parents while searching for a job or save up a ton of money to be unemployed while they look.

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