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The First Month in Your Real-Life Nursing Job

Posted by MANSResolutionsChair on February 24, 2016 at 12:00 AM Comments comments (0)

For those who have been following along since August, I have seemed to be keeping to a theme with my blog posts. The first post dealt with being a new nursing student, the second touched on being in your final semester as a nursing student, and now there is this blog post. So what, you might ask, is this blog post about? Answer: The first month in your real-life nursing job!


SO…. You passed the NCLEX! Right about now I’m betting you feel like a million dollars! You should! This was a huge accomplishment in your life! Congratulations! But now, real life is about to hit you! No longer are you practicing under the security net of your clinical instructors’ licenses. You’re on your own now! Time to freak out! Right?.... WRONG!


No hospital in their right mind will throw you to the wolves without guidance! You will have a preceptor who is there to help you become a competent nurse. One of the things that freaked me out for the first two weeks after starting my new job was the classroom orientation! It was so much information in such a short amount of time I felt like I was sitting there, frozen in fear, wondering if I was smart enough to retain all the necessary information. Let me tell you right now that no one... and I mean NO ONE, remembers all the information that gets thrown at them during orientation. It is just a way to get your feet wet with how the hospital is run. I have found myself remembering parts of orientation during the times my preceptor takes me around the hospital floor and explains how procedures and tasks are done on a firsthand basis.


One of the biggest fears I have had with my new job is one that I think a lot of nursing students have but never really vocalize. Documentation! It’s funny if you think about it, nursing school has prepared you for the necessary procedures such as the dreaded Foley catheter… but every hospital seems to have a different computer system that they use. If you’re lucky, you’ll get 1 or 2 days a week for 8-12 weeks learning how to document on that computer system, but that’s it! Let me put you at ease. I was terrified on my first day with the documentation. After finishing my first week of working on the floor, I do not know nearly enough about the documentation system to call myself competent, but I am getting the hang of it. It is all about repetition. Take a breath and give yourself time and you will get the hang of the system your hospital uses.


Finally, I am going to say those three magic words that everyone is tired of hearing; Evidence… based… practice (Queue dramatic music)! You are going to go onto the floor and see a totally different way to do procedures. You will be thinking, “I did not learn to do it that way!” To be honest, I don’t have an answer to that freak-out. All I can do is make a suggestion. Make it to the point when you become an asset to the floor you are working on, don’t step on anyone’s toes, and soon enough you will be working without preceptors and orientation teachers being around you. At that point, try to start incorporating the evidence-based procedures that you learned in nursing school. You can be an example to all those around you on how things should be done! But remember, you win more bees with honey! Always be willing to help others out and be kind to your coworkers! You will earn respect that way.


Well that’s about it! Remember! You made it through nursing school, you passed your NCLEX, you are a person who is completely capable of being a good nurse! Give yourself time and do not expect to be a competent nurse in the first month of nursing. You will learn as time goes on and get to the goals you set for yourself eventually. Good luck out there!


Joshua Steward, RN

Resolutions Chair


P.S. I am now working in an emergency department. Unless you start working in the same ED, I would very much not like to see you there! By that I mean… Stay healthy y’all!

Teleheath/Telemedicine

Posted by MANS Vice President on February 7, 2016 at 11:05 PM Comments comments (0)

TELEHEALTH

Telehealth and telemedicine are often times used interchangeably, but telehealth encompasses telemedicine. Telemedicine is used in reference to providing clinical services when clients are at different locations. Telehealth, on the other hand is correlated with broader use regarding remote education, consumer outreach, and other applications where electronic communications and information technologies are used to sustain health services (The American Telemedicine Association (ATA), 2006). Essentially, telehealth is the use of digital information, communication technologies and informatics technology to manage health, improve healthcare delivery, and enhance service delivery models. The increasing use of telecommunications technology has made significant contributions to the ongoing transformation of the healthcare system in the United States.

The first remnants of telecommunication usage in health care appeared back in the early 1900s. In 1906, Dr. Willem Einthoven, inventor of the EKG, developed a successful plan of how to transmit this specific EKG data using telephone lines (Farris, 2013). In 1955, Dr. Cecil Wittson used microwave technology to provide rural psychiatric consultations from Omaha Nebraska by establishing a closed circuit TV connection with a hospital a hundred miles away (Farris, 2013). These feats in healthcare communication technology comprised the first generation of telehealth.

Since the early 1900s, telehealth has evolved over the past century enabling healthcare systems to become more efficient, cost-effective and patient-centered. "The impact of telehealth can be seen in health professional distance education, nursing call center operations, poison control, telemetry, procedural robotics, and services such as remote monitoring of a patient's vital signs or transmitting diagnostic images for interpretation by an expert hundreds of miles away." (Department of Health and Human Services USA (DHHS), 2009, p 8).

Currently telehealth has been identified as critical to transforming our health care system. More than 2,000 studies have been conducted researching various aspects of telehealth/telemedicine. "The vast majority of the studies supporting the value of remote health care. Results have included reducing hospital readmissions by 83%, decreasing home nursing visits by 66%, and lowering overall costs by more than 30%" (GlobalMed, 2014, p 1). Due to these overwhelming consistent findings it is predicted that telehealth will continue to evolve and integrate itself fully into our global healthcare system. Additionally, current regulations and laws are continuously altering to support telehealth while ensuring patient satisfaction, patient privacy, and secure and safe procedures to enable telehealth advancement.

There are always risks associated with anything healthcare related. In regards to telehealth/telemedicine, there are four significant risks that have been identified. According to the Zurich American Insurance company (2013) top risks include equipment breakdowns, security and privacy breaches, credentialing and licensing issues, and informed consent mismanagement. Equipment malfunctions result in risks associated with business interruption and patient safety, due to providers receiving and/or passing along incorrect information or performing subpar care because of faulty technology equipment. Security breaches pose a major threat to an institution's reputation and a patient's right to privacy if sensitive patient information becomes publicized. Since health has become global, telehealth makes remote operating and diagnosing possible. Unfortunately, this increases the risk of providers running into credentialing issues because they may not have the appropriate credentials to operate in another state or country. Lastly, informed consent is a major issue because traditional informed consent only needed one or two forms to be signed. Currently, systems need to be set up so that multiple comprehensive informed consent policies and procedures can be adhered to. Presently, there are no systems currently set up to handle this type of layered consent procedure adequately, increasing the risk for negligence matters for healthcare facilities.

Challenges have also arisen due to more stringent privacy and security laws meant to protect consumer health information over networks. But overall, telehealth, because of all its benefits, will continue to advance and permanently integrate itself into our evolving healthcare system to support the increasing numbers of people covered through the Affordable Care Act, the increasing aged population, increasing chronic diseases rates, and the shortage of caregivers all resulting in an increased demand of care.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Work cited

 

American Telemedicine Association, Telemedicine, Telehealth, and Health Information Technology. (2006). Report of an ATA Issue Paper on Telemedicine, Telehealth, and Health Information Technology. Retrieved from http://www.americantelemed.org/docs/default-source/policy/telemedicine-telehealth-and-health-information-technology.pdf?sfvrsn=8

Farris, T. (2013, March 26). A brief history of telehealth [Web log post]. Retrieved from http://blog.securevideo.com/2013/03/26/a-brief-history-of-telehealth/

U.S Department of Health and Human Services. (2009). Pandemic and all-hazards preparedness act: Telehealth report to congress. Retrieved from http://www.phe.gov/Preparedness/legal/pahpa/Documents/telehealthrtc-091207.pdf

Zurich American Insurance Company. (2013). Four major risks associated with telemedicine. Retrieved from http://www.zurichna.com/internet/zna/sitecollectiondocuments/en/knowledge%20center/healthcare/telemedicine-risks.pdf

 

SNOW

Posted by MANStreasurer on January 30, 2016 at 11:55 PM Comments comments (0)

With all of the recent snow in Maryland, it is important to consider proper body mechanics and self-care. Many people, mainly males, think that shoveling snow is straight forward and requires little to no planning. This is simply not true! It is important to consider many things when we have more than a couple of inches of snow accumulation. Some things which should be considered include:

• Amount of Snow

• Type of Snow

• Weather Conditions

• Hydration Levels

• Proper Body Mechanics

Amount of Snow – The amount of snow that is currently on the ground, needing to be cleared, as well as the amount already cleared. The amount on the ground is important because it is the amount of work that needs to be done. The amount of snow already cleared impacts the effort which will need to be exerted because the higher the snow piles, the more effort, and therefore energy, it will take to move the snow being cleared to the proper location.

 

Type of Snow – The type of snow is also important to consider because it impacts the exertion level required. If snow is light and fluffy, then the job will require less effort. Contrarily, if the snow is dense and heavy, much like the recent snowfall, then the job will require considerably more effort. The amount of effort exerted directly correlates to the body’s response.

 

Weather Conditions – The weather conditions present while the work is being done, directly impacts safety and dictates what attire is appropriate. Be sure to dress warmly, but not so warmly that excessive perspiration is likely. Sweating is a natural response to physical exertion, but it is important to limit perspiration while in extreme cold climates.

 

Hydration Levels – Personal hydration is always of paramount importance. As we all know, the human body requires adequate hydration levels in order to work at peak homeostasis levels. It is important while performing physical labor to pay special attention to hydration levels. It is not enough to respond to your body’s thirst mechanism. You must also be proactive in hydration. If you wait until you are thirsty, then your body is already becoming dehydrated.

 

Proper Body Mechanics – People often jump into a physical job and do not think through the best way for their body to get the job done, again this is typically males. The old saying, “work smarter, not harder” is a valuable lesson to learn. While exertion is necessary, it is not necessary to work harder than is required. This means think about where you are going to be putting the snow. Make sure that your range of motion is one that is natural. Assess the proper amount of snow to be lifted with each shovelful. Be sure to stretch before performing physically demanding work!

 

If the time is taken to consider these simple aspects of snow removal, the job will be safer and done more efficiently. That means fewer injuries and more time to enjoy the serenity of a heavy snowfall, while maximizing the results of effort exerted for snow removal and minimizing the time required to do so.

 

Human Trafficking

Posted by Breakthrough to Nursing Chair on January 17, 2016 at 9:05 PM Comments comments (0)

Human Trafficking


January 11th was Human Trafficking Awareness Day.


Sex Trafficking:

There are two types of human trafficking: Labor Trafficking and Sex Trafficking. We will focus on Sex Trafficking. Sex Trafficking is defined by the federal government as fraudulently, forcibly, or coercively causing another to engage in a commercial sex act. If the victim is under the age of 18, merely causing him/her to engage in a commercial sex act is enough to constitute sex trafficking. Unlike the federal government, Maryland also criminalizes sex trafficking that does not rise to the level of force, fraud, and coercion for adults. Sex trafficking does not discriminate. Victims may be domestic, foreign-born, minors, adults, male, female, or transgender. Traffickers may be male, female, young, old, and even a family member or friend (MD Human Trafficking Task Force, n.d.).


Nursing Implications:

According to Katherine Chon, senior advisor on Trafficking in Persons for the US Department of Health and Human Services, roughly 75% of trafficked women saw a healthcare provider while in captivity. In the majority of these cases, the provider was in the emergency department. Victims can be seen in many other settings nurses are present such as schools, health clinics, acute-care hospital units, dental offices, and jails. Failing to identify trafficking victims can lead to tragic consequences, including death for that person. Since nurses are in the frontline of care for this population, it is important that they know how to identify victims and refer them to appropriate community resources.


Recognizing Trafficking Victims:

There are many shared characteristics between domestic violence and human trafficking victims, which is why human trafficking is commonly mistaken for the other. However, there are some important differences. Human trafficking victims tend to be more isolated than domestic violence victims. They may suffer from disease, or malnutrition, have little to no family contact, and are more likely to abuse substances. They may not be able to verbalize their current location, especially if they are from outside of the US (The Polaris Project, n.d.)


Screening Suspected Trafficking Victims:

Ask nonthreatening questions that require little more than a yes or no answer, such as:

- Where do you sleep? Is this place clean?

- Do you get enough food to eat?

- Have you been physically harmed or threatened? Has your family been threatened?

- Are you free to talk to anyone you wish, including people outside your home or job?

- Can you come and go as you please?

- Are you ever forced to perform sex acts or to work?

- Where are you from? How did you arrive here? Do you know where you are right now?

- Do you keep all the money you earn?

- Do you keep your own identification papers (The Polaris Project, n.d.)?


Approaching a Suspected Victim:

- Never ask outright if he or she is a trafficking victim. They will most likely not know the definition of “trafficking”, nor want to be called a victim.

- Most importantly, separate the suspected victim from the companion. If the companion resists, call security.

- If the suspected victim does not speak English, call for an interpreter. Do not accept the companions offer to interpret for the patient.

- Anticipate that the victim will resist help (The Polaris Project, n.d.).


Why is MD a Hotspot for Sex Trafficking?:

- Central location, as a pass-through state and a destination for human traffickers. Traffickers utilize many of our highways such as 95, to connect victims to major east coast cities such as NYC, Baltimore, Philadelphia, and DC.

- With the major highways come numerous rest stops, truck stops, and bus stations. These locations are proven to be a primary location for traffickers to exploit their victims. Data from the National Human Trafficking Resource Center (NHTRC) suggests that approximately 70% of human trafficking incidents occur in truck stops. Maryland has passed legislation that requires all truck stops, rest areas, and bus stations in MD to post information about the NHTRC hotline (MD Human Trafficking Task Force, n.d.).


Why is this an Important Topic for BTN directors?:

It is our responsibility to be connected with out community to understand the core issues and how we can be helpful. The nursing profession goes far beyond bedside care and hospitals.


What to do if you Suspect Trafficking:

If you suspect that someone is a trafficking victim and are unsure how to proceed, call the National Human Trafficking Resource Center (NHTRC) hotline at 1-888-3737-888.

 


I have attached some links for further reading about the topic as it pertains to nursing:

The Role of the Nurse in Combating Human Trafficking http://www.dcf.state.fl.us/programs/humantrafficking/docs/The_Role_of_the_Nurse_in_Combating_Human.25_1.pdf

Stolen lives: What nurses can do to stop sex trafficking http://www.reflectionsonnursingleadership.org/Pages/Vol38_3_Moynihan_Amenta_SexTrafficking.aspx


References:

Maryland Human Trafficking Task Force. (n.d.).Retrieved from http://www.mdhumantrafficking.org/

The Polaris Project. (n.d.). https://polarisproject.org/sex-trafficking ;

Maryland Association of Nursing Students is searching for the next Board of Directors!

Posted by MANS Membership Chair on January 2, 2016 at 2:05 PM Comments comments (0)

As we approach our annual convention at Notre Dame on February 13, 2016, we also begin the search for the 2016-2017 Board of Directors. Involvement in Maryland Association of Nursing Students (MANS) is not only an opportunity to meet and network with peers, but also provides exposure to many other professionals in this industry. Being a part of a group of students working together to improve the experience of nursing students in Maryland has been very gratifying for me, and has helped me further develop skills that I will take into my nursing practice. As a board member, you are able to develop relationships with other board members, faculty at schools through out the state, and various professionals involved in nursing.

You may be asking “What is the commitment of time I need to make?” The MANS board of directors meets once a month for a board meeting, at a day and time that is voted on by that board. Board meetings generally last three to four hours, depending on how much content is on the meeting agenda. Aside from the board meeting, the time each board member spends on MANS is dependent upon their position and responsibility. For example, the Vice President position is responsible for planning the annual convention, which requires a much larger time commitment than some other board positions. You can review the responsibilities of each board member on the MANS website in the Bylaws.

The link can be found here:

http://www.mdnursingstudents.org/BYLAWS.docx.pdf

Board terms begin June 1st, and end June 1st of the next year. Board members who are elected at the annual convention are asked to attend the board meetings in March, April, and May, so they can observe how meetings are conducted and the business that is covered. Additionally, board members elected at the annual convention are invited to dinner with the current board on the evening of the convention (February 13, 2016). This allows us to get to know the new board, and answer questions so there can be a successful transition in June.

If you are interested in applying for a board position, you will need to complete an application, which you can request via email from mansmembership@gmail.com.

Completed applications should be returned to me at the same email address by the application deadline of February 5, 2016. All applicants who have submitted a completed application will be contacted by email with additional information regarding election day, and will be able to run for office at the annual convention.

We hope you will consider joining the MANS Board of Directors for 2016-2017! If you have any questions, please feel free to email me at mansmembership@gmail.com. See you at MANS Annual Convention February 13, 2016!

 

 

The Top 5 in-Demand Nursing Specialties

Posted by Manslegislativechair on December 21, 2015 at 12:40 AM Comments comments (0)

One of the biggest questions to answer after getting into nursing school is, what type of nurse do I want to be? Or what jobs are in the highest demand? As you may know, nursing has changed over the years in terms of standards of practice and policy. According to nursejournal.org (2015), the “nursing field is booming” and the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) explains the demands for nurses will soar by 26% by year 2020. Below, I will list out the top five most “booming” nursing specialties according to nursejournal.org.

Starting with number five, nurse case manager. A nurse case manager is an alternative to bedside nursing, and offers the familiar 9 -5 work schedule. The duties of the nurse case manager includes: monitoring patient’s progress in the facility and evaluating the level of care given to them. Nurse case managers are also allowed to suggest other forms of treatments to the healthcare team since they have a nursing background. Dealing with insurance, in home nursing visits finding the most effective level of care all come packaged with nurse case manager title. The median salary for this position is about $69, 000.

Number four, certified nursing midwife. This booming specialty allows nurses to deliver babies, provide healthcare to female patients during pregnancies and perform family planning education which involves pre and post-natal care. Nursing midwives can work in hospitals, health departments, clinics, private practice and even homes (Nursejournal.org, 2015). Midwives have been shown to have higher success in their careers with a master of science degree or higher. The median salary is roughly $84,000.

Number three comes out to be, certified legal nurse consultants. As a legal nurse consultant, you are not bound to any medical facility and have the option of choosing where you would like to work. You may work from home, a law office, or even at a healthcare facility if you choose. Your nursing knowledge will be used to assist lawyers who are dealing with lawsuits related to medical issues or laws. Legal nurse consultants help to do in-field research, reviewing standards of care and go over medical records, prepare reports and find expert witnesses (Nursejournal.org, 2015). The median salary for certified legal nurse consultants is $62, 000.

Number two, certified dialysis nurse. In this specialty, nurses assist clients who are living with ineffective kidneys and need dialysis machines to help the body get rid of waste products. Interestingly, these nurses are in demand on cruise ships for individuals who are in need of dialysis services. A service such as this allows for a better quality of life for these clients. Dialysis nurses are also able to work the normalized 9am-5pm hours during the week, and need at least 2,000 hours with the last two years coupled with a certification test in order to become a certified dialysis nurse (Nursejournal.org, 2015). Median salary for this specialty is $63,000.

Number one, and amongst the highest paid are the certified nursing anesthetist. The primary duties involved with this nurse specialty is administering anesthesia to patients under the supervision of an anesthesiologist. These nurses work mainly in the operating rooms or surgical centers and many times have their own practice which they contract out to healthcare facilities. Nurse anesthetists work closely with surgeons, dentists and podiatrists making sure that anesthesia medications are safely given to the client (Nursejournal.org, 2015). Most nurse anesthetists are master level prepared professionals, with a beginning salary around $135, 000.

The nursing field is still considered to be one of the fastest growing career fields. There are so many paths to success that one can take. It is an exciting and ever changing career field. Choose your nursing path and if you are not satisfied, you may switch to different area of interest. The choice is yours!

 


References

 

Nursejournal.org,. (2015). 5 Booming Nursing Specialties Where the Demand is High. Retrieved 20 December 2015, from     http://nursejournal.org/articles/5-booming-nursing-specialities-where-the-demand-is-high/

 

Money, Money, Money - How Much Will You Make?

Posted by MANSPresident on December 12, 2015 at 11:55 PM Comments comments (0)

How much will I make? Isn't that one of the first questions that pops in your mind when you are looking at a profession? Salary is always a sensitive subject - one we all desperately want to know about but never want to openly discuss.

Want to know what you will be making as a Registered Nurse (RN)? Medscape asked more than 8,000 nurses to take an easy survey about their profession including various topics such as salary, satisfaction, and opinion on education. Below are brief summaries of these results and much more!

Salary

 

While salary differs with location of practice, the average annual nursing salaries in the US also vary with respect to degree earned and field of practice. Average salaries are as follows:

• RN - $79,000

• Clinical nurse specialist - $95,000

• Nurse practitioners (NP) - $102,000

• Nurse anesthetists - $170,000


Satisfaction

Would you be satisfied with that amount? With many students drowning in debt and no money in their pockets, those numbers probably look good! However, the 8,000 nurses that were involved in the survey do not share these feelings. Only 53% of RNs and 61% of NPs are satisfied with their salaries, leaving about half of RNs and more than a third of NPs not pleased with their compensation.

So why is it that the higher amount of education one receives, as indicated in this survey, the more likely to live below their means? 61% and 58% of RNs and NPs respectively live within their means and only 29% of RNs and 34% of NPs live below their means. Factors such a school debt (no kidding!), life-style expectations, and various factors contribute to these differences.


Education Degree

With more than 60% of NPs, 56% of RNs, and 48% of LPNs designating they would chose nursing again over another profession, only 10% and 13% of LPNs and RNs respectively would choose to pursue the same education preparedness. With more advanced education, that satisfaction of preparedness increases as 49% of Doctorate degree and 33% of Masters indicated their desire to pursue the degree again.

I hope you will find this information useful, interesting, and helpful as we enter into the nursing profession! Check out more survey information including rewards of nursing, satisfaction in practice settings, average school debt and tuition costs, benefits of the job , and more survey results at:

http://www.medscape.com/features/slideshow/public/nurse-salary-report-2015#page=1


Reference

Medscape. (2015). Medscape Nurse Salary Report 2015. Retrieved from: http://www.medscape.com/features/slideshow/public/nurse-salary-report-2015#page=1

 

 

Compassion Fatigue

Posted by Image of Nursing Chair on November 29, 2015 at 12:30 AM Comments comments (0)

Compassion Fatigue...What is it?

It's becoming a growing topic in many professions but especially the nursing profession. It is defined as "The combination of burnout and secondary traumatic stress. Burnout is composed of three constructs: emotional exhaustion, depersonalization, and diminishing one’s personal accomplishments. Secondary traumatic stress (STS) results from pressure, anxiety, and a host of other negative feelings that can occur from caring for people who have directly experienced a traumatic situation" (Kelly, Runge, & Spencer, 2015).

As nursing students and nurses, we really try not to become emotionally attached to our patients and remain objective to their circumstances, but realistically, that is a difficult path to remain on. Surprisingly, compassion fatigue can be felt despite which field of nursing you go into, from pediatrics to geriatrics. Everyone has come across that one patient who's story is so heart-wrenching, and it's almost impossible to forget about them or "feel bad for them." There is always the presence of those secondary traumas which are not your own, but the suffering of your patients, can quickly lead to compassion fatigue. Some authors feel that when we made the decision to enter the healthcare field, we were already compassion fatigued. We have a strong sense of caring of others and placing their needs above our own which is a huge cause of compassion fatigue.

 

What does Compassion Fatigue look like?

It resembles chronic stress. When interacting with your patients and their families, you may find that your caring ways or mannerisms are fading. These behaviors ultimately prevent the development of a strong nurse-patient relationship and eventually impacts their plan of care.

 

What should you do if you suffer from Compassion Fatigue?

  • Go back to the basics - Find what makes you happy and makes you feel fulfilled as a person beyond the nurse or nursing student that you are. Take up a hobby, or get back into an old hobby of yours.
  • Find ways to strengthen your physical being and well-being.
  • Maintain a good work-life balance.
  • Use your classmates or co-workers for outlets to vent and express your stress and frustrations.
  • Seek professional help when needed.

 

Overall, taking care of yourself, and recognizing that nursing has a significant risk of Compassion Fatigue is the best preventative measure in reducing the incidence. Always remember why you chose to take this life-changing journey to become a nurse, and ground yourself as needed. Your well-being supersedes all, caring for yourself allows for you to provide quality care for your patients.

 

Resources:

Houck, D. (2014). Helping Nurses Cope With Grief and Compassion Fatigue: An Educational Intervention. Clinical Journal Of Oncology        

            Nursing, 18(4), 454-458 5p. doi:10.1188/14.CJON.454-458

Kelly, L., Runge, J., & Spencer, C. (2015). Predictors of Compassion Fatigue and Compassion Satisfaction in Acute Care Nurses. Journal of

            Nursing Scholarship, 47(6), 522-528 7p. doi:10.1111/jnu.12162

What is Compassion Fatigue? (2013). Retrieved November 28, 2015, from http://www.compassionfatigue.org/pages/compassionfatigue.html

A Step Ahead: Planning for Career Advancement at the NSNA Midyear Conference

Posted by MANS MNA Student Liaison on November 21, 2015 at 11:55 PM Comments comments (0)

One of the amazing perks of membership in the National Student Nurses’ Association (NSNA) is the opportunity to attend their annual midyear career planning conference. While NSNA also holds an annual convention every spring, the fall midyear conference is unique in that it focuses on “career planning and professional development…offer[ing] a variety of resources to enhance your nursing education and accelerate your nursing career” (NSNA, 2015).


Earlier this month I, along with several MANS Board members and nursing students throughout the state of Maryland, had the opportunity to attend the NSNA midyear career planning conference in Atlanta, GA. The conference provided workshops on running effective NSNA school chapters, nursing specialty showcases featuring a variety of career paths, a career development center for help with resume writing and interview skills, and an exhibit hall with representatives from hospitals and universities across the country. Staying true to the goal of career planning, the conference also offered an NCLEX review session, a certification in sheltering and disaster health for nursing students from the American Red Cross, and poster sessions highlighting student research.


The highlight of the conference came the evening of the first day when keynote speaker Dr. Sally Karioth, Professor of Nursing at The Florida State University, spoke about “Compassion Energy – The Honor of Caring”. What is compassion energy? Dr. Karioth defined it as “a joy we get from taking wondrous care of each other”. Many of us have undoubtedly already experienced compassion energy during our clinical rotations whether it came from watching a patient improve throughout your shift, relieving his pain, or even inspiring a tiny laugh. It is an honor for many of us to care for others during the most stressful and difficult times of their lives, but it is also a privilege. After the keynote address, attendees at the conference had the privilege of caring for each other during a memorial service for the five Georgia Southern University nursing students who passed away in a car accident on their way to clinical this past spring.


Before the weekend was through, MANS hosted a breakfast for students from Maryland that was well attended and represented a number of nursing schools from our state. The MANS Board came home inspired by the amazing work of our peers across the country and excited to get started on some new projects of our own. Watch the MANS website and social media pages for opportunities to get involved, and we hope to see you March 30-April 3 in Orlando, FL for the NSNA Annual Convention!


References

NSNA. (2015). A new adventure in planning your nursing career! Retrieved from http://midyear.weebly.com/uploads/2/2/4/5/22459246/2015_midyear_brochure.pdf

Chronic Senioritis: Bringing Nursing School Full Circle

Posted by MANSResolutionsChair on November 14, 2015 at 2:50 PM Comments comments (0)

Greetings my fellow nursing students! Josh here. If you have been keeping up with the MANS blog you will have hopefully remembered that at the beginning of this semester I wrote a blog post about the 6 things you need to know as a new nursing student. This time, I’m going to bring it full circle and talk about the things nursing students in their final semester should be prepared to face.


First and foremost, the dreaded CHRONIC SENIORITIS! You have been working so hard for so long that in your final semester, you find yourself falling short. Don’t worry! You are not alone! Everyone gets spells of CS. Just keep in mind that you have come SO FAR. You can do 4 more months. Reach down, dig deep, and push through, because in the end you will have reached an accomplishment that so many have strived for and only the elite have completed!


Second, there is more than one way to skin a cat! While in my senior semester, I have had a minimum of 20 people throwing advice my way about, “What I need to do in order to find a job and get my life in order after nursing school.” My advice to you is to RELAX! You will figure it out. There are people I know who have been job-hunting since the beginning of the semester and others who already have jobs lined up. It can be disheartening to see people in your class seem so accomplished and proactive in the job hunt. Just remember it will all work out for you. Personally, I do not have a job lined up yet but I am not worried. I know I will be an asset to whatever hospital hires me. If you go through life with confidence, you will succeed!


Third, the dreaded NCLEX! The past several years of your life have been preparing you for this huge test! You will take this test, and you will pass! If you don’t pass the first time you will pass it on the second. There are three amazing NCLEX review courses you can take that will prepare you. I figured you would like to know how each is laid out so here is a very brief summary.

- Kaplan: Focuses on how to take the NCLEX. It gives you ways to critically think about each question and pick the best answer.

- Hurst: Focuses on nursing content. It is an in depth review on all you have learned.

 - Picmonic: An NCLEX test prep that incorporates nursing into audio and visual learning. This program is available on a web-based platform as well as on iPhone/ Android applications.

 

Finally, stay involved! I said it in my last blog post and I’ll say it again. Getting involved with more than just your job will make you a leader in nursing. If you were a member of the Maryland Association of Nursing Students, the National Student Nurses Association, or your school’s student nurses association, you do not have to stop there. Nurses have huge influential power in all aspects of life and getting involved somewhere outside the scope of where you work will not just better yourself, but also better the people around you! At this point I would like to shamelessly plug a video that Andrew Richardson (Legislative Chair) and myself worked on that gives examples as to why, and how, we should get involved.


Stand Up, Speak Up: Get Involved!


All of this being said, congratulations to those who have made it this far! Be proud of what you have accomplished! You can finally get back to seeing long lost friends and family who thought you disappeared off the face of the earth when you started nursing school! I would say good luck to everyone who is about to start their nursing career, but you all don’t need it! You succeeded in nursing school and you will succeed in nursing!


Joshua Steward

Resolutions Chair

mansresolutions@gmail.com


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