Nurses are the foot soldiers in health care. Doctors are the generals, planning strategies and issuing orders. Highly educated and well-trained, nurses carry those orders into the field. All health care professionals work hard to improve and save lives, but nurses have the highest degree of prolonged contact with patients.
Their work is intense from every angle. They have to answer to and defer to physicians, and they provide one on one care to patients. In every area of health care, nurses are the first to see you. From the emergency room, operating room, hospital room to clinics, offices and schools, they are on the front lines.
Long hours, bloated case loads and pressure filled work environments take a toll. The pressure and stress are enormous. It builds up until it blows up and burnout is the result.
Frustration is a major contributing factor to the issue. Nurses are too often diverted from patient care and thrust into administrative tasks. Nurses spend more than thirty percent of their time on housekeeping and other menial errands, diminishing the amount of patient care. Nurses care; they can’t help it. Their caring natures are what led them to the profession in the first place. They are affected by seeing others in pain or suffering. Losing patients is part of the job, but it never becomes routine. It hurts.
Pressure-filled work environments take a toll. Physical and emotional tension have made nurse burnout epidemic. Many are leaving the profession. Fortunately, there are steps that management can take to reduce stress on nursing staff, according to Laura Hendren of Health Leaders Media Magazine.
Some measures include: recognition and rewards for good work, encourage breaks in a space for that purpose, classes in handling stress, and counseling for those who need it. Nurses need to take care of themselves as well as their patients.
Nursing is a fulfilling, stimulating, and gratifying profession. Achieving balance in the workplace will help nurses maintain physical and emotional health.
If you would like more information about the profession or are looking for a position as a nurse, contact us.
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