General Nursing Information Tips

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Building a Trusting Nurse-Patient Relationship

The key to building a trusting nurse-patient relationship is based upon communication. The patient must see the nurse as someone that he or she can open up to with their concerns, and not feel judged. If the nurse portrays an uncaring or humorless demeanor, the patient may feel put off. Frequently, the patient is under stress and by encountering a nurse who seems distant and uncaring can exacerbate their stress level. When first meeting the patient, the nurse should make sure to make eye contact and smile, while reaching out a hand to offer a warm handshake. By doing so, the patient will feel more inclined to discuss their feelings. In addition, the nurses's response to the patient's concerns should never be condescending, nor should the patient be made to feel "talked down to." Nurses should address the patient's concerns as soon as possible. For example, if in a hospital setting, and the patient calls for the nurse, the nurse should respond as quickly as possible. This will build upon the trusting relationship, as the patient will be aware of the responsiveness of the nurse. Also, the nurse should never hesitate to tell the patient that whatever they discuss, will be kept in strict confidence. By instilling trust and confidence, the nurse is able to reduce patient anxiety and create a more pleasant environment for both patient and caregiver, as this plays a significant role in the health of the patient.

   

NPAs

NPAs or nurse practice acts are state and federal rules, laws and guidelines for all registered nurses. When a nurse becomes a registered nurse he/she is bound by the state and federal laws within the states for which he/she practices. These rules, laws and guide lines are for the protection of the nurse as well as the patient. They are in place to for all registered nurses to follow and they follow acceptable and required guidelines to ensure the safety, treatment and care of all patients. You can check the NPAs web site to verify that your registered nurse is truly registered, licensed and is in good standing with the nurse practice acts and that there are no current or pending complaints against your registered nurse. This may give a patient the ease of mind that their care and aftercare is in good hands. General nursing information can also be obtained through the NPAs web site for your state. This may help guide you as to whether or not you want to take this step, the requirements and responsibilities as a registered nurse in your area. You may also want to check your physician or surgeon to ensure that he/she is also in good standing with the medical practice acts and your state medical board. If there are any complaints or reprimands you may be able to locate and read on each situation. The NPAs and MPAs are great places to start to obtain information for both patient and students. Once you have decided that nursing may be right for you, set an appointment with your local nursing or state college offering the necessary classes and scheduling.

   

Operating room technique

All nurses have a general operating room technique whether you are a scrub nurse, theatre nurse or a circulating nurse. A scrub nurse scrubs into surgery, is positioned near the surgeon and hands needed instruments and surgical supplies during the procedure to the surgeon. This is a very important position during a surgery. The scrub nurse must work well with the surgeon and other operating staff and assist the surgeon in keeping the flow and rhythm of the procedure. A circulating nurse ensures that the surgical room, equipment and supplies and prepared, ready and available to the surgical staff. The circulating nurse is also responsible to represent the patient whom is unable to speak for him/herself if anything were to go in a manner that is not optimum for the patient. This position is also a very important position. Without a circulating nurse, the surgical staff may run out of supplies, have an equipment failure, and use unsterilized instruments or other such situations. The circulating nurse is a little like a musical composer, they ensure things go as best as possible and the staff have everything they need to be successful. The theatre nurse is very well educated, trained and experience and is prepared to take the position and role of either the surgical or circulating nurse. This nurse is very versatile and may be placed in either position needing filled. To find free career advice on which nurse you would like to be, contact your local college for a free career placement assessment.

   
What is the nursing pledge or poem?

Florence Nightingale Pledge for Nurses

I solemnly pledge myself before God and in the presence of this assembly, to pass my life in purity and to practice my profession faithfully. I will abstain from whatever is deleterious and mischievous, and will not take or knowingly administer any harmful drug. I will do all in my power to maintain and elevate the standard of my profession, and will hold in confidence all personal matters committed to my keeping and all family affairs coming to my knowledge in the practice of my calling. With loyalty will I endeavor to aid the physician in his work, and devote myself to the welfare of those committed to my care.

~Florence Nightingale

   
What are some facts on nursing?

Nursing Facts

Nursing is the nation's largest healthcare field with 2.5 million registered nurses (RNs) nationwide. There are four times as many RNs in the United States as doctors.

   
What is the Nurse´s Prayer?

Nurses Prayer

Be me in the world.
Be my voice to the deaf.
Be my faith where there is doubt.
Be my hope where there is despair.
Be my light where there is darkness.
Be my joy where there is sadness.
Be me in the world.
Be my eyes to the blind.
Be my consolation to those who need to be consoled.
Be my understanding to those who need to be understood.
Be my healing to those who need to healed.
Be my love to those who need love.
Be my forgiveness to those who need to be forgiven.
Be my death to those who need me.
Be me in the world.

~Author Unknown

   
What is the Nurse Reinvestment Act?

Federal Nurse Reinvestment Act

President Bush signed a bill, the federal Nurse Reinvestment Act, on August 1, 2002. It's designed to ease the nursing shortages. The new law will create government nursing scholarships for students who agree to work at least two years in a health care facility with a critical shortages of nurses after they graduate.

   
What are the symptoms of burnout?

Burnout Nurses Effects

The symptoms of burnout in nurses are as varied as the sufferers. Some people become angry, blowing up or growling at anyone who crosses their path. Some resort to blaming any annoyance, large or small, on external factors. Some become quiet, introverted and isolated, which can indicate the start of a serious depression. Others manifest burnout in nurses by under or overeating or abusing alcohol or other mood-altering substances. Still others may experience a range of physical symptoms, including chronic illness, high blood pressure and frequent headaches. Some people on the verge of burnout actually become obsessive workaholics. Others become chronically late or psychologically absent.

   
How can I prevent workplace violence?

Workplace Violence for Nurses

Nurses are particularly vulnerable to violent attacks when staffing is low and at times of high activity, such as visiting hours and meals, OSHA researchers explain. Some nurses also work alone in remote locations and in high-crime areas where they are vulnerable to assault.

Many nurses can't avoid working alone or in emergency rooms and mental health centers where the potential for violence exists. Most health care centers have installed security systems that control access and require employees to wear ID badges.

Familiarize yourself with your patients, especially those with a history of violent behavior, dementia, or drug or alcohol intoxication. You can also make sure you always have an escort or another worker around when you feel you're in an unsafe situation. Make sure you have a system that protects confidentiality but alerts your co-workers if you know there's a patient who may become aggressive.

   
How can I prevent back injuries?

Nursing and Back Injuries

The majority of injuries reported are head, neck, or back injuries by nurses related to lifting patients, according to nurses. Although federal guidelines suggest workers do not lift anything above 50 pounds, most patients weigh much more than that.

Whenever you can, push instead of pull. This puts less stress on your back and you have twice as much power. Stay close to the bed or machine you are using and avoid reaching. Use both arms to prevent strain. When you lift from floor level, lift from a squat with your back straight, bend your knees, and let your legs do the lifting. If you have to lift from waist level, try to get help from another nurse or aide on the floor. Make sure you put the bed rails or wheelchair arms down. Explain what you're doing to your patient and to your co-worker who's helping you lift.

   
What can I do about my latex allergy?

Latex Allergies in the Workplace

The powder that manufacturers put on latex gloves can cause a rash on your hands, and in some severe cases, could send you into anaphylactic shock. Even if you don't develop an allergy when you first start using them, you could develop them later, and you may be sensitive to them even if they're on other people's hands.

Ask your workplace to use powder-free gloves. But if you do have to work with powdered gloves, wash and dry your hands thoroughly after removing them. While at work, avoid using oil-based lotions that contain mineral, coconut, or palm oil or lanolin. These oils break down the glove barrier. If you can, wear synthetic gloves or cotton liners with latex gloves for work that gets your hands wet. People who develop latex sensitivity may have to go to more trouble to avoid exposure. Consult a doctor and tell your employer if your symptoms get worse.

   
Is there really a nursing shortage?

Nursing Shortage Update - August, 2002

The nation's nursing shortage has had significant consequences during the past five years, even contributing to patient injuries and deaths. Inadequate nurse staffing has been a factor in 24 percent of the 1,609 cases involving death, injury or permanent loss of function reported since 1997 to the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations.

The report says there are 126,000 nursing positions unfilled in hospitals nationwide. Ninety percent of long-term care organizations lack sufficient nurses and have shortages of nurses "to provide even the most basic care" and some home-health care agencies are being forced to refuse new patients.

With the aging of the nation's baby boomers and nurses themselves, it has been estimated that by 2020 there will be at least 400,000 fewer nurses available to provide care than will be needed, providing a major nursing shortage problem.

   
Where do I find self-learning material?

Self-Learning Materials

Most specialists are more than happy to provide patients and their families with informative pamphlets and other self-learning material.

   
What are some facts on nursing?

Projected Nursing Shortages

The demand for nurses grows in the wake of a national nursing shortage. Employment for registered nurses will grow faster than the average for all occupations through 2008.

   
How can I prevent needlesticks?

Using Needles Safely

Health care workers have long fought for laws that would require hospitals and health care centers to use safe needles -- that is, needles with safety caps and other devices that prevent puncture wounds. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requires gloves, gowns, masks, and eye protection, but the agency hasn't addressed the need for safe needles. Fortunately, there's a new federal law that requires hospitals to use safe needles beginning on Jan. 1, 2001. If your hospital doesn't yet use safe needles, you may want to make that an issue. Meanwhile, make sure you're especially careful when drawing blood. Be aware that you are likely to be at your highest risk of injury at the end of a shift or when working a double shift, or at times when staffing is low.

   
What is the Million Nurse March?

Million Nurse March

In May 2002 one million nurses, allied health care workers, legislators, public figures and private citizens converged upon the Capitol Mall in Washington, D.C. as one collective, formidable voice to openly and honestly present the facts about the state of health care delivery in America. The Million Nurse March to Washington was the culmination of one and a half years of grassroots efforts by committed nurses, health care workers and citizens to educate the public about safe and appropriate health care delivery. The MNM was the sentinel event in the promotion of positive, proactive, productive, and sustainable changes in health care delivery in the United States.

   
Are there nursing shortages?

Information Abouot Nursing Shortages

There are many factors contributing to the nursing shortage:
*Growing demand - During the nation's economic slump, many people put off getting health care because of financial troubles or a lack of insurance. With the economy up, so is the demand. Without the new graduate pipeline, there are fewer nurses available to replace those who retire or leave for other opportunities. Currently, the ratio of RNs in their 40s to RNs in their 20s is four to one.

*Lower baccalaureate enrollment - In fall 2000, entry-level BSN enrollment fell by 2.1 percent, dropping for the sixth year in a row, according to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing.

*Higher hospital census and greater acuity -Modifications in managed care and a new push for competitive quality is increasing patient days, hours of nursing care and the recognition of the role of the RN.

***This information was taken from the Honor Society of Nursing, Sigma Theta Tau International, July 2001

   
How do I find disease info on the Internet?

Nurses Internet Research

The Internet has made clinical research so much easier.
If you'd like to find out information about the disease multiple sclerosis, for instance, go to a reliable search engine such as google.com and enter the following phrase in the search box, multiple+sclerosis. Don't forget the plus sign between the 2 words. This is a good benefit of nursing research studies on Internet.

   
How can I prevent patient falls?

Interventions to Prevent Client Falls

Interventions that can reduce the risk of falls include fixing or replacing substandard wheelchairs and furniture and labeling it with the residents' name, using properly fitted shoes and removing clutter from around the bed, determine appropriate level of psychotropic drug use, assist residents in certain transfers (between bed, chair, toilet) and remind residents of safe transferring techniques.

   
Where can I find info on specific diseases?

Disease Info at .org Addresses

If looking for information on a specific disease for your clinical research, national organizations usually provide the best source on the latest breakthroughs. Many can be found easily on the Internet by using the disease name followed by .org (for example, arthritis.org).

   
Where can I find health info?

Your Trusty Librarian for Clinical Research

Don't forget your local library as a resource for cutting-edge medical information and clinical research. A good librarian can help you narrow your search quickly.

   
What are some risk factors for patient falls?

Risk Factors for Patient Falls

Risk factors cited that contribute to falling incidents include the use of psychotropic drugs, environmental hazards, poorly maintained or improperly fitted wheelchairs, transferring techniques and suboptimal care.

   

What is a Nurse Midwife?

Perhaps you are a high school senior or individual looking for a career change and trying to decide what your next career move should be. You remember someone you met wearing scrubs at the local coffee shop on your beak one day and their name tag said "Certified Nurse Midwife?" You begin wondering if this career field could be for you. You've come to the right place. Let's learn more about the occupation and see if it the right choice for you.

What is a Nurse Midwife?

A Nurse-Midwife is a certified advanced nurse who has received training and education specializing in skills related to midwifery. Most often, they function as a primary healthcare provider for women and perform medical care for healthy women or non-risk pregnancies. Though they are allowed to give medical care to high risk pregnancies under the supervision of a physician.

Day in the Life of a Nurse Midwife?

Here are just a few things that Nurse Midwifes are responsible for.


  • Gynecological exams

  • Preconception planning

  • Prenatal care

  • Labor and delivery

  • Give advice for breastfeeding and newborn care

Salary

the average salary for a nurse midwife in the United States is $81,182, but varies by location.

How Do I Become a Nurse Midwife?


  • Candidates must hold a graduate degree (example: Master of Science in Nursing)

  • Most programs require candidates to be registered nurses before gaining admission

  • Complete a nationally accredited program

  • Pass the national certification exam

Reflective Questions


  • Do you have excellent people skills?

  • Are you a good communicator, active listener and observer?

  • Are you a team player?

  • Can you handle emotionally charged situations?

  • Are you able to offer advice and answer questions to patients?

  • Are you willing to commit to in-depth learning, comprehending and updating your knowledge and skills?

   

Time management in nursing

General nursing information is given within the explanation of your nursing classes as you begin your studies. Within this information you will find that you will need to learn time management skills to keep your stress levels down and your patient care up. Learning time management in nursing can sometimes seem a bit overwhelming. But if you successfully complete the applicable skills you will be able to control some of the situations you are presented with in your busy work schedule. You may arrive to work to find someone has called in sick or injured (which happens) and all of a sudden you feel overwhelmed with stress because you don’t have the staff assistance you feel you need to give the best possible care to your patience. With nursing time management skills you will be able to manage the care of all your patience without getting so stressed that you make a mistake. And let’s face it, mistakes happen but one really serious mistake can cost a life or serious injury and that is not what you got into nursing for. To better prepare for the unexpected, learning time management for nursing is a very important skill to have. And with the proper time management skills and training you may also be looking for career advancement, raises and you will definitely receive the recognition from your co-workers that you worked so hard and show great skill and control. You will be so glad you went the extra distance to obtain such a high standard of care for your patience and show such pride, care and abilities to others.

   

Nursing time management

When you begin classes to become a registered nurse, you will learn the general nursing information which applies to this position along with detailed studies in care and treatment of patience. Within your studies you will also want to incorporate time management classes for nursing. These classes will assist you in learning to assess and manage your time more effectively. Nursing time management can be a difficult feet to get a handle on. When you arrive at work for your scheduled shift, there are always so many things to do and you can feel overwhelmed very quickly. But if you prioritize and try to stay on top of each situation you will get through it. Learning time management skills and applying them in a concise manner may help. You must begin your shift with a brief from the previous shift this will give you the needed information to attend to the most needed areas and patients first. After you have the most needed patients cared for, you will begin a normal routine of checking all your patients and ensuring that their needs are take care of. Time management in nursing can also be accomplished by delegating responsibilities to other staff members. Such as: if a patient simply needs water, bedding assistance or other hygienic assistance you may choose to send a nurse’s assistant or other staff member to assist while you are attending to other patient whom may need medications or other services which require a registered nurse.

   

Nurse Practice Acts

General nursing information: Nurses are an intricate part of the health care team both in a physician’s or clinical office/setting as well as in a hospital setting. No matter where you look in the medical field, you will find a nurse, and highly educated and trained nurses are always in demand. A good general nurse will provide competent and comprehensive medical care in a personable, considerate and caring manner. A good general nurse will put the patient at ease which allows the nurse to carry out the direction and instruction of the physician. Nurse practice acts or NPAs are laws set forth in each state giving the full definition and scope of nursing requirements and responsibilities. These laws are in place to protect public health, welfare and safety. It is the responsibility of each nurse to be aware and participate fully within the boundaries of these laws. A nurse is there for everyone’s protection, and if you follow the guidelines set forth, you should be safe from legal implications related to these laws. Every physician also must adhere to the medical practice acts of their state. And the nurse(s) may also choose to read and understand these limitations and requirements to ensure that these laws are best utilized by the physician in charge of your patient. You are the first defense to your patients care and treatment.

   
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