510 minutes: A MNA RN Explains a typical shift

24 Jun

To Whom It May Concern:

I’m an acute care registered nurse at a St. Paul hospital and am
concerned (as are the majority of nurses) about the way nurses are being
portrayed in their quest for safe staffing. However, I also realize the
majority of the population doesn’t know exactly what a nurse does when
he/she is outside the patient room. The public hears us talk about needing
more time at the bedside, but doesn’t understand why they see nurses at
the desk so often. With this understanding, I set out to give a detailed
account of what nurses’ duties are outside the patient room.

Every shift a nurse has legal obligations and guidelines that need to be
followed. If these duties are not done accordingly, the hospital doesn’t
get paid for services rendered, the nurse’s license can be in jeopardy,
and the hospital can be fined. Not to mention, the patient may not get good
continuity of care due to lack of communication between shifts. So what are
these duties? How much time do these duties consume? These are good
questions and deserve good answers.

I have broken down an 8 hour nursing shift into minutes and timed how long
it takes (on average) to do each of the duties that occur outside the
patient room. Each shift a nurse has 8.5 hours, or 510 minutes, at work,
including a 30-minute unpaid break. In this time the nurse has to receive
and write shift report, conduct a chart and medication administration
record (MAR) review, create a comprehensive interdisciplinary care plan,
give a verbal report to the charge nurse, and chart their findings and
assessments. The assessments include a head-to-toe assessment, vital signs,
falls assessment, skin assessment, wound assessment, pain assessment,
psychosocial assessment, and follow-up assessments for pain, surgical
wounds, invasive tubes, cardiac monitoring, blood sugars, unstable vital
signs, and any intake/output the patient has had. All of these tasks need
to be performed for each patient on every shift.

Each duty takes time away from the patient’s room, but is necessary for
the patient’s care. Charting takes, on average, 20 minutes per patient
(this includes both initial and follow-up assessments). Receiving shift
report at the beginning of the nurse’s shift is 30 minutes and it takes
the nurse 10 minutes per patient to write report for the next nurse. An
interdisciplinary care plan requires another 5 minutes per patient. The
chart and MAR review takes 10 minutes per patient and giving verbal report
to the charge nurse requires approximately 2 minutes per patient.

When these times are calculated and subtracted from the 510 minutes a
nurse is allotted for his/her shift, the time left over is what can be
spent in the patient room. The amount of time changes depending on how many
patients the nurse has in his/her care. The amount of patients a nurse has
for an assignment varies from shift to shift and from unit to unit, but on
an average acute care unit the nurses have from 4 to 7 patients each. This
means that for 7 patients (or a 7:1 ratio) a nurse has 2.2 minutes per hour
in each patient room. The time in the patient room increases as the number
of patients decreases. For instance, a 6:1 ratio means 3.5 minutes per
patient per hour, a 5:1 ratio increases to 5.4 minutes per patient per hour
and a 4:1 ratio equals 8.2 minutes per patient per hour.

The times stated above are decreased even further by numerous issues that
can arise. Some of these issues are obvious; for instance, another patient
starts bleeding, stops breathing, or incurs some other life threatening
complication. But what about the patient who’s medication was ordered
incorrectly, wasn’t sent up by pharmacy, or isn’t controlling their
pain? What about the admissions ER and OR need to send, even though each
nurse already has a full assignment? And how about the patient being
discharged who needs education about a new medication, a new diagnosis, new
equipment needed at home, or a new appliance that has been surgically
implanted? These are just a few out of hundreds of issues the nurse may
encounter that require juggling around of patients and/or a call to a
physician, a pharmacy, a family member, or even the previous nurse. Because
of this, the time spent in the patient room is prioritized into what needs
to be done, rather than what should be done.

Prioritizing patient care is unfair to the patient. What this means is the
nurse spends time assessing the patient, giving medications, and monitoring
the different equipment being used on the patient. At times, the nurse may
get a chance to reposition the patient, help the patient to the bathroom,
or address a comfort issue the patient is having. However, many times the
patients go without because the time isn’t there. Prioritizing the
patients also involves making sure extra time is found for patients that
are more critical or debilitated. Unfortunately, the patients that are able
to go to the bathroom independently and are more medically stable get even
less time with their nurse because another patient needs the attention.

Every patient within the nurse’s assignment pays the same amount of money
for their nursing care and the hospital bills for eights hours of nursing
care per shift; therefore, shouldn’t every patient be entitled to the
same quality of care?

The only way to increase time at the bedside is to ensure patient to nurse
ratios, which take acuity of patients into consideration, are in place.
Nurses supplement the time they have currently by skipping breaks, and
using afore mentioned prioritizations. This causes burnout for the nurses
and improper care for the patients. Any person with common sense can see
that lower patient ratios provides more time with the patient to prevent
falls and skin ulcers, promote health education and increase good patient
care.

Thank you,
Kelly Hedblad, RN

50 Responses to “510 minutes: A MNA RN Explains a typical shift”

  1. Chewie June 24, 2010 at 8:55 pm #

    Wow, you must be really slow at your job. No offense, but back when I was a nurse I had 5-6 patients a night and still had to chart on paper, put meds in the cart, and do assessments, reporting, etc. Now everything is electronic and much easier. And I DARE you to say I wasn’t taking good care of my patients.

    The whole point of this patient safety thing, truthfully, is b.s. The real truth is that the nurses today are getting lazier and more greedy. I know the MNA Nazi won’t let this go through, but dang it felt good to type the truth.

    • Angie June 24, 2010 at 9:05 pm #

      You’re not a nurse

      • Chewie June 24, 2010 at 9:09 pm #

        You’re correct, not now. I’m no longer in the profession.

      • MNA RN June 25, 2010 at 12:32 am #

        To Chewie:
        I agree with Angie… You are NOT a nurse. I’m sure the patients will be relieved to hear the news that you are no longer in the profession… (are you even sure if you ever were).

    • Megan RN June 26, 2010 at 4:05 am #

      I agree ,very well said! I wish they could spend a day in my shoes. I was trained in computer charting in college and then again with a new system 2 years ago. I have excellant computer skills and still don’t get a break most days. Patient care and safety should come above all else. Increasing the amount of patients we take on a day shift is very upsetting to me. Oh yeah and calling us lazy/greedy is just plain ignorant you clearly don’t know nurses very well!

    • Mel June 30, 2010 at 11:24 pm #

      Chewie,
      You must have been a nurse many years ago when having 5-6 patients was the norm. I worked on a med-surg floor in the 80’s when that was the standard. Patients that are hospitalized now are sicker than ever before. Medicine and technology has advanced and with that it has made nursing much more complex.
      The admission and charting process has become much more complicated. Please don’t tell us that are curently at the bedside how we are lazy and greedy. You are removed from what is reality!

  2. Kari RN June 24, 2010 at 8:59 pm #

    Very well said!!! Thank you for verbalizing what I have wanted to put into words for along time.

  3. Kari June 24, 2010 at 9:02 pm #

    I have been a Nurse through paper charting and now computer charting and to tell the truth, I think computer charting is more time consuming. Either that or there is just plain and simple MORE to chart on these days.

  4. Kari June 24, 2010 at 9:02 pm #

    Plus patient acuity has increased dramatically over the years!

  5. pat burke June 24, 2010 at 9:14 pm #

    excellent job by Kelly Hedblad, this needs to get into the newspaper

    To Chewie: obviously you are not a working nurse today. The patients now are sicker, the technology is more complicated & if you think everything is easier because it is electronic you are very mistaken! The b.s. is all the extra work we have to do to comply with JACHO & federal regulations. The computors very much increase the time it takes to chart, because, not only do we have that to contend with that, we also have more paperwork to comply with the computor work. Yes, I’m sure you took good care of your patient’s. We want to take good care of our patients too. Yes, I DO take offence!!

  6. Vickie Holker June 24, 2010 at 9:24 pm #

    Computer charting takes longer. With paper charting I used to be able to have all of my midnight assessments charted by 0100 when I came in at 2300. Now it takes me until 2200 to chart when I come in at 1900 with less patients. And believe me, I know how to prioritize.

  7. PC RN June 24, 2010 at 9:54 pm #

    Excellent essay, breaking down a shift into its different elements and easy to understand the demands on a nurses time. Very well done!
    Pay no mind to “Chewie’s” angry rant. That’s all it is–totally uninformative.

    • MNA RN June 24, 2010 at 11:36 pm #

      Chewie… go chewie on your bone.

  8. Barb June 24, 2010 at 11:42 pm #

    Chewie: I know you’re not a nurse, you have too much hatred toward your sister nurses. Even though I disagree with the few nurses that don’t agree with this action (strike), I would never talk about my sister nurses the way you have in your epistle & I have not been treated poorly by them either. I am old enough to retire & stay because I love my job & when I do retire I will still consider myself a “nurse”. Apparently, you don’t & that alone leads me to believe you never were a nurse.

  9. Sharon June 25, 2010 at 12:03 am #

    I have been a nurse for 34 years. The amount of charting we do now compared to when I started is mind boggling. The idea that computer charting is faster is simply the statement of someone that’s never done it. My charting time has at least doubled since going electronic. The one thing not included in Kelly’s time frame is the amount of time on the phone with IT because a computer isn’t doing what it is supposed to and without the computer you can do nothing. Chewie I’m sure you took good care of your patients but don’t judge those of us doing the job now. You have no idea how things have changed. I have been on both sides.

  10. MNA RN June 25, 2010 at 12:28 am #

    To Chewie:
    (you bite)

    http://allnurses.com/general-nursing-discussion/never-say-we-487257.html

  11. Bonnie June 25, 2010 at 3:31 am #

    Excellent!!

  12. ellen June 25, 2010 at 3:57 am #

    Thank you, Kelly, for the breakdown. I’m not sure I can break my typical shift down as well, but I KNOW I find myself looking for things, and waiting for physicians an awful lot of the time. Patients seem to know this, though I do my best to deflect. Our patients are people, too, and I’m unwilling to ‘dump’ them on the next caregiver. Our colleagues also deserve respect on the hand-off. I understand efficiency in the workplace we call ‘hospital’ is key, but people deserve respect, a smile, whatever help can be mustered. I’d like to take this opportunity to thank all the people who care for patients, and particularly the patient patients themselves. You’re the ones that make all this acrimony worthwhile, in whatever final contract we find ourselves with.

  13. Mischelle June 25, 2010 at 10:04 am #

    And you did what for your patient’s?

  14. Sick Of Strike Talks June 25, 2010 at 12:53 pm #

    Pat Burke –

    I would disagree that patients aren’t any sicker these days. If anything, advances in medication and treatment options have eliminated relatively simple medical problems that I’m sure used to plague patients and medical staff alike. If that’s your argument for wanting to strike…. Wow.

    Either way, you should consider using spell check. You aren’t lending your profession any credibility with that many simple words misspelled in one post.

  15. Sick Of Strike Talks June 25, 2010 at 1:04 pm #

    Kelly Wrote:

    Every patient within the nurse’s assignment pays the same amount of money
    for their nursing care and the hospital bills for eights hours of nursing
    care per shift…

    ———————

    That depends entirely on whether or not the patient has insurance.

  16. Sally June 25, 2010 at 3:07 pm #

    Beautifully put, Kelly! You are so on it! And Ellen, you too. My only addition to your input would be that in the midst of those very short minutes we are continuously multi-tasking, and shifting our priorities as the acuity rises. 95% of the time we are all working overtime in order to ENABLE our patients more minutes at the bedside! Its just common sense to see that instead of paying thousands of nurses time and a half for OT accumulating on a daily basis, that the increase of nursing staff would be a better plan for all 3 parties… the nurses, the hospitals and most importantly, the patients.

  17. OB RN June 25, 2010 at 3:55 pm #

    A nurse for 24 years and very computer literate, I agree that computer charting is cumbersome and very time-consuming. Not only are we handling patient care and coordination of that care with ancillary staff, we are utilitiy players who fill in all the gaps that are needed by our well deserved patients. We are CARE COORDINATORS and need the best nurse-patient ratio to manage all of the many tasks expected of our profession. To CHEWIE (if you really were a nurse)….time changes a profession and your prior profession is NOT what it used to be. Give it up, you are livinig in the past.

  18. Surgical RN June 26, 2010 at 1:26 am #

    Fabulous post, Kelly. Thank you for helping the public see what we do.

  19. Sher June 26, 2010 at 11:10 am #

    Chewie: Back in your day 5-6 pts a day was hard work and you probably did do REALLY good care. By the sounds of your comments, you are one of those RNs who eat their young and actually you aren’t eating just the young…but all nurses. We nurses need to support each other rather than tear each other apart.
    Today, the pt requires much more care and attention due to the acuity of their condition (they are much sicker than in your day) and require many more types of specialized equipment (which you didn’t have in your day) that takes much more specialized training and time just to keep that going (let alone the pt). Plus, charting has become so cumbersome and complex due to so much focus on legality issues (which wasn’t that much in your day).
    You use MNA and Naszi in the same sentence? What’s that all about? MNA watches the backs of the nurses. If it wasn’t for MNA’s support, nurses wouldn’t have what they have today. Aren’t you getting retirement checks? That’s because of MNA! The hospitals wouldn’t be providing that on their own. Don’t ya know.
    And you say you’ve said the truth??? You better look again…you’ve been out of nursing way too long!
    Sher
    A retired RNC who supports MNA and all it does for nurses. And who supports all nurses.

  20. cathy June 26, 2010 at 1:48 pm #

    To Chewie: I have been a nurse for 27 years. The patients that I care for now on a med-surg unit used to be in ICU in 1983. The patients that are now in ICU used to be dead. Times have changed honey. Charting on paper much much much faster.

  21. Kathy June 26, 2010 at 7:08 pm #

    Chewie,

    You were a nurse when patients stayed at least overnight after simple surgeries. Now they go home the same day. Also, once upon YOUR time, pre-op patients came in the night before. No more. Only the really sick people stay IN the hospital and only people with complicating medical issues come in earlier than the morning of surgery. We, (meaning me and you and other ‘old’ nurses), saw this change coming, and thought surely administrations would realize sicker people needed more intensive nursing care, but alas, it is not so. Please, don’t take me back to what was, as I WAS there. Right now we deal with realities of not enough time to truly do all that SHOULD be done for every patient, AND get out on time. Documentation has INCREASED, computer or not, and that takes TIME. Yet with all this we face disciplinary actions for getting off late, and the same for lack of charting.

  22. dk June 26, 2010 at 9:54 pm #

    I have worked in the hospital setting for many years although not in an RN capacity. I have alot of respect for the work you do. Perhaps some hospitals have a problem with nurse:pt ratio but not the one I work at. Unfortunately, you forgot to log the number of minutes you spend reading your fiction book or surfing the web. You can’t argue that one….I’ve seen it innumerable times with my own eyes.

  23. Amy June 26, 2010 at 10:50 pm #

    This is a really good letter! The two thing I noticed that she didn’t mention are dealing with lab and lab results…i.e. reviewing their lab results, making sure they are ordered correctly, and doing what needs to be done as a result of them. The other thing she didn’t mention…which is a big part of our job…is the emotional side of dealing w/ pts. I know it was meant to be understood/included in the “time at pt’s bedside” but it really needs to be said out loud because it is such a HUGE part of GOOD nursing care! And dealing with families and their emotions too! Very important!

  24. Elle June 26, 2010 at 11:47 pm #

    Bravo Kelly…I had heart palpitations reading it. Thanks for sorting out all that we deal with in ONE shift and we all know, it gets much worse on most shifts!! Chewie needs a steel toe boot for the comments posted and I can only be THANKFUL that he or she is not in this profession. Because obviously” profession” is not part of his/her make-up. We don’t need narrow minded, self-rightous idiots in this feild so go back to whatever you’re doing and DON’T get sick!! Thank you again Kelly.

    • MNA RN June 27, 2010 at 1:16 am #

      Ditto, great job Kelly! Looks really bad when it’s in black and white.

  25. Barb June 27, 2010 at 12:31 am #

    Attention dk: I have worked in two different hospitals & both computer systems did not allow us to use the computer except for work issues. In fact, if we tried to log on to the internet or anywhere except where we were allowed to be, we could not get in. Also, we are not allowed to read a “fiction” book, newspaper or anything else other than something related to our work & I’ve never had the time to do so. I have NEVER seen a nurse or a nursing asst read anything personal except on their break. You must have been working in a hospital with no patients.

  26. Mary June 27, 2010 at 1:34 am #

    May God bless Kelly and Chewie; Kelly for her eloquent synopsis of a day in the life of an RN; and Chewie for her soul; that God and all of her former peers and former patients will forgive her for her compassionless, nonempathetic, dilusional view of reality – I can only imagine what kind of RN (or LPN or CNA) that she was in practice. I thank the Lord she was not my nurse when I needed one . . . oh, and isn’t everyone curious where the name “CHEWIE” comes from? Chewing tobacco, perhaps?

  27. Uffda June 27, 2010 at 2:47 am #

    I received a letter in the mail from Terry Graner (VP of Patient Care Services at ANW) informing me of the Longevity Bonus that would be included on my June 25th paycheck “as addressed in Section 4 of the Current Contract”. She goes on to state that our commitment to our patients at ANW is appreciated and that commitment together with our longevity leads to retention of expertise with Allina.

    SHE SAID NOTHING OF THE FACT THAT THE TWIN CITIES HOSPITALS WANT TO DELETE THIS FROM THE NEXT CONTRACT!

    I’M NOT REALLY FEELING THE LOVE, Terry Graner. Show me “true love” in WRITING (in the next contract)

  28. Christine June 27, 2010 at 4:47 am #

    I spend as much time as I possibly can at my patient’s bedside; I only leave when I have to. And yet, I can think of several more neccessary, yet time-consuming tasks that I perform outside of the patient room… I don’t think searching for or running to get supplies and equipment has been mentioned (we aren’t allowed to stock very much in patient rooms any longer because it is not cost efficient). Locating, collecting, unpackaging, crushing, mixing, and preparing medications for each patient, all the while making doubly sure that I have the right medication, dosage strength, and route, at the right time, for the right patient (sometimes after waiting in line at the medication “vending machine”) takes time. Then I have to send blood and other specimens to the lab (after I have carefully labeled them correctly with a label that I had to print from the patient’s computerized chart because it didn’t automatically print like it was supposed to). Then, it is amazing how much time it can take to consult with other nurses, talk to doctors (several teams of them, many times throughout the shift), talk to the lab about results, the pharmacy about missing medications, radiology about scheduling tests, respiratory therapists, PT,OT, speech therapists, other facilities, the police, poison control, etc, etc… (coordinating the care of the patients and advocating for them), not to mention speaking with concerned family members of the patients, either on the phone or in person. Most of the secretaries have been taken away where I work, and so I spend a great deal of time answering the phones, directing visitors, Faxing, printing, and other secretarial duties. Some tasks need to be delegated, and that takes time too. I also spend time transporting my patients to and from tests and procedures, which leaves my remaining patients without much attention while I am gone. And lets talk about our time-saving computers (not)… I am computer savvy, and I like them, BUT–now it takes far more time to sign onto a computer, open a patient’s “chart” and then find the correct “page” to chart on, or read (if you can even find an available computer that isn’t broken) than it ever did to open a paper chart!! Paper charts NEVER refused to open, or took several minutes to load, they never crashed, and it was easy to see a whole page or two at a glance… whereas now there is all this waiting and scrolling and clicking and searching. And if the system goes down, we are lost! And those are just some of the difficulties we face (once we have a fairly good grasp of the system our hospital uses). On another topic, I agree with those who have said that the patients are sicker, the workload heavier, and the number of things that leagally need to be documented has only increased. I haven’t had time to read a paperback novel or do anything else personal since I worked night shift, years ago. If all of these neccessary, but away-from-the-bedside tasks are added to the direct care that is provided at the bedside, a SINGLE busy, critically ill or complex patient can easily absorb a nurse’s entire shift. Yet we have to prioritize and divide our time among two to six patients. Most of the time, I skip one or both of my breaks in order to give as much time to my patients as possible, leaving most of my charting until after I have given report to the next nurse. So, I am almost always nowdays being paid overtime to document all that I did during my shift, because my patients come first! How can I explain to them, that because of all that I am doing FOR them, I can’t spend much time WITH them? And how can I explain to them that their health and safety matter to me, but not to the greedy, money making corporation that I work for which refuses to cut into it’s own profit when the economy heads south?

    • MNA RN June 27, 2010 at 3:46 pm #

      Well stated Christine… Thank you for taking the time to tell the truth of the matter.

      WE KNOW how important this fight is going to be. Without our contract, it will only get worse and I never thought that it getting any worse was a possiblility… but now it is. Without our contract… the hospitals will take our voice away forever. Everything that we advocate for in nursing will be stripped away. Our voices will be silenced… we will lose our voices to advocate for our patients… we will lose our voices to advocate for the advancement of the nursing profession…
      The entire nation is watching and waiting… This will set precedence for the standards of nursing and the future of nursing/patient advocacy. This will be the Largest Nursing Strike in The History of the U.S.A. Other countries are watching. This is a fight for our patients now and tomorrow. This is a fight for nursing today and it will impact what nursing will be tomorrow. It is a fight for the essence of what NURSING is… that is why I will stike on July 6th (if I have to). I will fight for what I believe in!

  29. erica June 27, 2010 at 5:26 am #

    In response to chewie, obviously you either don’t remember what it was like to be a night RN or you are just plain lying. Because if you were a current nurse that used computer charting you would realize the length of time that it takes to do electronic charting. No, it is not always faster. When we have computer outages we are forced back to paper charting and I am always amazed at how much less is required for us to chart.

    Also this IS about patient saftey and you don’t know what your talking about because you are not in our shoes! Glad you are no longer in the nursing profession!

  30. LDR RN June 27, 2010 at 2:22 pm #

    Well Chewie.. I’m guessing the reason you “are no longer a nurse” is that you COULDN”T manage it.. too much work for you! Whether you were ever a nurse or not, I’ve been a nurse for 27 years and things have changed dramatically. Patients who were hopitalized when I started as a nurse, wouldn’t get hospitalized now. Patients who were in ICU/CCU would be on general med/surg nursing units. The people who are in our ICU units now, would have been DEAD years ago. Give me a break.. you have no idea what you are talking about.

  31. Reza RN June 27, 2010 at 6:43 pm #

    A kind response to Chewie:

    Chewie, you don’t know the first thing about being a nurse. (YOU ARE A FAKE).
    Reading your short essay, gives the obvious impression (to the reader) that you are an uneducated individual and clearly you have no idea what the —- you’re talking about.
    Any patient whom has spent a few hours at an emergency room or at a hospital setting will vouch that nurses are integral part of health care delivery system and THEY DO SAVE LIVES.
    When there is a pandemic outbreak of diseases such as avian flu, tuberculosis, SARS etc.., nurses put their own lives on the line each and every day by being the first line of defense. And for that, this is the appreciation they get from a myopic and ungrateful person such as you.

    My contention here is not to make the nurses heroines that they are, but to shed some light on what unfair assessment employers give to what nurses do each and every day.
    Kelly did a fine job delineating nurses responsibilities; However, she only scratched the surface of vast and profound duties that nurses do on a daily bases. Vast majority of the nurses’ duties are highly technical, so trying to explain them here serves no purpose. For the professionals in the filed, they already know what these duties are. For the common people, it is highly difficult to explain in a few paragraphs as what encompasses the nurses’ duties.

    In light of medical breakthroughs and technological advancements as well as ever changing governmental guidelines and policies, nurses are increasingly pressured to do more for less. More patients & more patient care, more procedures, more paper work for less salary, less pension, and now less dignity.

    Chewie, now I ask you this simple basic question that even you can wrap your brain around.
    WOULD YOU THINK THE POLICY MAKERS WOULD ALLOW THEIR LOVED ONES BE CARED FOR BY A NURSE WHO HAD 5-6 PATIENTS?

  32. Barb June 27, 2010 at 10:35 pm #

    Speaking of being on the first line of defense, I am an RN working in Psychiatry & our pts can be somewhat dangerous at times. I have been asked by male doctors to go with them to protect them when they are meeting with our patients. No one is there to protect me. It’s just one more “nursing” function that no one thinks about.
    MNA RN: I’m with you & so are the 84 per cent of the 12,800 MNA nurses in the Twin Cities who voted to strike. We are striking for what we believe in & we believe in safe patient care.
    People like Chewie aren’t living in the real world, especially not in 2010.

  33. Theresa P. MNA RN June 28, 2010 at 11:21 pm #

    Christine your wrote that beautifully and am proud to be a Nurse, REAL Nurse with you. Chewie, I’m not sure what rock you crawled out from, but please go back…..your clueless comments speak volumes about you and your character, or lack there of!!!!!
    If the general public could run, not walk in our shoes, manage the constant interruptions with phone calls, family concerns, meetings, reports, patient status changes, to just name a very few…..they would see that we are real with our requests for better staffing. These are People in the hospital, not cars in a garage getting an oil change!!!!!I think if anyone has ever needed a Nurse, they get it, and for those of them who do not understand…..You will need a Nurse someday!!!!
    This strike will be hard on everyone, but I shudder to think what is would be like if we (MNA) took what the TCH want us to take—Can’t live with that!!!!
    In Solidarity!
    Theresa P. RN

    • MNA RN June 29, 2010 at 4:40 pm #

      To Theresa P. RN:
      Very well articulated!

      “SOLIDARITY!”

  34. MNA RN June 29, 2010 at 4:51 pm #

    http://www.facebook.com/l.php?u=http%3A%2F%2Fmnnurses.org%2Fnews%2Fpress-releases%2Fnational-study-more-nurses-less-deaths&h=af8daUU2gV1Pb3_RWD4U7uoK5_gNational Study: More Nurses = Less Deaths | Minnesota Nurses Association
    mnnurses.org
    LOS ANGELES (April 20, 2010) -A major new study led by one of the nation’s most eminent nurse researchers provides compelling new evidence that an RN-to-patient staffing law reduces patient mortality, assures nurses more time to spend with patients, and substantially promotes retention of experience…

  35. boujajane June 29, 2010 at 5:23 pm #

    Plain and simple. There are good nurses and there are not so good nurses but pointing fingers certainly isn’t going to get anyone anywhere. Did anyone ever consider that maybe it’s the system that needs improvement so that the patient gets the best care and enough time?
    All this arguing and taking things so personal makes nursing sound like a clique.

  36. Barb June 30, 2010 at 2:01 am #

    Boujajane: It’s not arguing & pointing fingers, it’s a discussion, dialogue, how people exchange opinions, ideas & information. If it sometimes gets a little heated, that’s normal, people are sometimes passionate about their beliefs or things they love such as their religion or their profession. If no one expressed their beliefs we wouldn’t get anywhere in this world. Also, apparently you are not a nurse. Nurses are not a clique but we are a sisterhood and we stand together. I work with a couple of nurses who don’t agree with the rest of us & are probably going to cross the line but, at the end of the day, we tell each other “I love you” & respect them & their opinions. I don’t think there are too many professions that can say that.

  37. Barb June 30, 2010 at 2:04 am #

    SORRY! I should have referred to us as a sister/brotherhood as we have many fine male nurses among us as well.

  38. RN TWIN CITIES June 30, 2010 at 2:43 am #

    These twin cities hospitals make me sick! Things will never be the same before these negotiations and strike. Get ready for heated debates. And for all those Methodist non-contract nurses you can shove your opinions up your ***! I am sick and tired of hearing about your cut in pay and your rights. You have NO rights that is why YOU choose to have a NON UNION job. Stop commenting in the workplace. This has nothing to do with YOU!

  39. Kari, RN June 30, 2010 at 1:49 pm #

    boujajane I do agree thatthe system needs a change and at times these discussions can make us sound a bit like clique. But these are very emotional issues, we are talking about our livelihood, our profession, work that we mostly love and patients that we care so much about. I can truely say I care for each & every patient the way I would want my own family cared for. I think most nurses would say the same thing.

    When we have kids that are at the hospital alone it is heart wrenching to not be able to spend the time caring for them emotionally & developmentally as they would be at home but we often don’t have the time, their medical needs (& those of our other patients) eat up too much of our time. I know that is the reality of the situation and no insurance company is going to pay for enough nurses so the children have the same level of care they’d get at home. I’m sure they’d say the parents should be there to do that (ideally they should be, but that is not the reality for many families for a variety of reason) the sad thing is that in the end the child suffers. They need love, attention and to play in order to develop and grow as they should. Many children who spend much of their lives in the hospital don’t get that.

    Sadly Barb, I don’t think all nurses feel the same about respecting & loving their co-workers even if they disagree with this cause and this ensuing fight. At least from what I’ve seen if they feel that way many don’t do a good job of expressing that. I was just telling my sister the other day that in some ways this feels like I’m back in highschool with what feels to me like extreme peer pressure. So I can relate to someone saying there is a “clique” feeling going around right now. I don’t think that’s the intention but that is the result. Thankfully that stuff didn’t bother me much 20 years ago & it doesn’t now either but boy do I feel it. And it helps that this time around I’m on the other side of it so even though I feel the pressure I’m not trying to push against it.

  40. Kari, RN June 30, 2010 at 1:58 pm #

    by the way I couldn’t figure out how you came up with those numbers specifically. I was getting numbers that were a bit higher but no matter. Either way it leaves little time and that’s assuming all goes well. And as I mentioned above that doesn’t leave any quality time which is even more important with children (especially when they are often afraid & alone on top of being sick). I suppose the same can be said for adults who are alone. Many of them are probably afraid & lonely too. On top of their medical needs.

  41. Barb June 30, 2010 at 9:39 pm #

    Kari: After talking to others at the meetings at MNA, people from other hospitals & even other depts. at our hospital, I realize I work with a group of nurses that are truely unusual. We haven’t had the problems amongst each other that others have experienced. I’m thankful for that.

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