Thursday, September 17, 2015

Nurses Fire Back at Ignorant TV Hosts

When ANY of the general public has the mistaken impression that nurses don costumes and borrow the doctor's stethoscope for some unknown reason, it tells us that we have a huge problem in health care in this country. People tend to believe everything they see and hear on television and the ladies of ABC's The View have tried to set back nursing 100 years as they showed they know nothing about the nursing profession!

The good news is that nurses have UNITED and all over Facebook and Twitter and other social media they are stopping the collateral damage the way nurses do everyday.

Kelley Johnson Google Images
When Kelley Johnson, Miss Colorado stepped on the Miss America stage in her scrubs and (her own) stethoscope she set the Miss America pageantry on its heels and brought it in to the 21st century!  She showed that a beautiful woman inside and out could make a difference by demonstrating the talent she is most proud of is making a difference in her patient's lives. She was true to herself. Johnson said Wednesday on The Ellen Show, "I am a nurse and that's my talent – taking care of people, caring about other people, and so I wanted to give the nurses that don't have that voice that voice and that recognition of just somebody going up there and being a little bit different and unique." It suddenly was about REAL WOMEN competing for scholarship money to pay off student loans and/or continue their educations to make a real difference in the world. Kelley came away as second runner-up with a great scholarship to continue her education and she put the nursing profession on the map!

The ensuing controversy over the inflammatory remarks on The View has elevated the nursing profession as we join together to blast The View and it's obviously IGNORANT hosts for their belittling statements. We also band together to educate the public about the nursing profession. I've learned more about what other nurses do and where they practice in the past couple of days than I have in all my 35+ years in nursing. It's exciting and educational and uplifting! Let us keep this up.

One of the downsides to nursing is caregiver fatigue that way too often leads to valuable nurses leaving the profession. Perhaps if they found another way to share their passion and skills they could turn this issue around and continue to make a difference in someone's life everyday. The silver lining here is that nurses have so very many opportunities to practice, but who knew about some of these?!  We need to share our experiences with each other so that we can learn more and perhaps find a niche that renews that passion some have lost along the way.

Let's continue to be strong and make our voices heard. Nurses are the backbone of the health care system. We need to educate the public about who we are and what we do so that we can help our health care system WORK. When people don't understand health care and how to access it and how to get answers and help, it fails for all of us. We've seen the costs of health care escalate out of control and we fear litigation in everything we do. When people don't understand they listen to the ignorant voices and that's why we see lawsuits over issues hang nails!

Let's turn such an ugly controversy into a positive thing.

#nursesshareyourstethoscope, #nursesunite, #thisisnotacostume, #showmeyourstethoscope

Friday, September 11, 2015

7 Resume Writing Tips For Nurses

Dan at recently honored The Nursing Site Blog as one of The 14 Nursing Blogs Every Nursing Professional Needs to Read.
I invited him to give us some tips about resume writing for nurses....

According to the US Department of Labor, there is a demand for job growth for nurses. What does this mean? As much as employers seek to employ and keep their experienced nursing staff, nurses will benefit from better salaries and working conditions. You may be thinking that employers will be desperately seeking to hire you so you don’t have to worry about crafting a resume. You may be wrong if that’s your school of thought.

A good resume will get you hired for the best position and it can be a venue of negotiating for higher salaries. It’s always great to create the best resume that will attract the most desirable job offers in the market. The healthcare job market is constantly changing and nurses too should adapt a universal style that can be used in different work settings. Here are some resume writing tips for nurses to help you accomplish a universal style resume.

Choose the right type of resume for your position

Are you applying for a job within the nursing field? If yes, then you should write a chronological resume showing your previous employment and achievements. However, if you are applying for a vacancy in a different field, it would be ideal to come up with a skill based resume that features your most relevant experience, hobbies and employment.

Do not clog your resume with industry-specific initials

A lot of people will read your resume. Some may not be nurses while others may be nurses but working in a different specialty. For instance, MICU is not known to most people who are not in the nursing field. If you must use an acronym, spell it out. For instance, you may want to say Medical Intensive Care Unit (MICU). If you need to mention it later in your resume, then you can say MICU. If the person reading your resume does not understand it, they may not think of calling you for an interview.

Ensure your resume compliments the job description

Focus on specific accomplishments in your resume that match the specific job description and extract out the ones that are not applicable. Organize your list in such a way that the most relevant ones come at the top. This is what is likely going to catch the recruiter’s eye.

Highlight your accomplishments and unusual nursing experiences

Recruiters want to understand your level of experience so that they can know if you really are a good match for the job opening. However your experience shouldn’t read like a job description. Thus avoid listing all routine duties a staff nurse does. Rather focus on those experiences that were outstanding or extra-ordinary. Also when describing your nursing experience, give information on the type of facility you worked for. If you are an entry nurse, give details of your internship.

Your resume should be keyword friendly

Since agencies get so many resumes, they mainly rely on software that helps in searching for keywords of qualified candidates. By placing the right keyword, your resume can easily jump to the top of the others. Which keywords should you include? You need to first look at the job description to determine the phrases and terms that appear often. Use abbreviated and spelled version of each one of them. For example, if you are applying to a certified nursing assistant, you want to use both CNA and Certified Nursing assistant in your resume. If an employer searches for either of the words, you will have taken care of both.

Keep your LinkedIn profile updated

Take the accomplishments you have listed on your resume and add them to your LinkedIn account. If you feel like expanding them, you can go right ahead as you are not in any way limited. An employer is likely to look there to know more about your career and your qualification. Ensure you connect with professionals in your area of expertise.

If you have any non-nursing experience, ensure you include it in your resume

Unlike before when nurses where advised not to include any other experiences not related to nursing, a lot has changed nowadays, other work experiences show your diversity in experience; something essential in today’s work environment.

Now, Let's take a look at a sample Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) Resume

Eve Clark
22 Oak Court | Sometown, CT 05505 | (222) 222-2222 |


Personal summary

Service focused and highly professional nurse with exceptional patient care skills acquired through seven years of experience. Highly skilled in taking care of patients in different healthcare settings.

Professional experience

Heritage Rehabilitation Centre, Birmingham

Certified Nursing Assistant 2009 To Present
  • Offered nursing assistance to residents in long term care facility
  • Helped residents with daily living activities such as assisting with meals, bathing, dressing and personal hygiene
Garden Nursing Rehabilitation
  • Trainee nurse 2005-2007
Samaritan hospital
  • Medical receptionist 2003-2005
  • Everest University- Nursing Degree 2004-2006
  • Central Town University- Nurses Aide Program 2003
  • Convenant School; O Levels English (A) Maths (B) Physics (B) Geography (A)

Dan is the creator of, a website dedicated to provide easy to follow resume examples and writing tips to help you stand out in the crowd. You can also find general career information such as job duty, descriptions, and salary over at Dan's blog.

Thanks Dan!

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Staying Safe While Nursing

Nursing is a great profession, but it has changed a lot since I first qualified. In some ways, it has got better. For example, there are more opportunities open to nurses, and it is easier to get further training and specialize than it used to be. However, not everything has changed for the better. A problem that has become a lot worse over the past few years is attacks on staff. In many countries, the number of physical attacks on healthcare workers has increased significantly. For example, in America, nursing is now one of the most dangerous professions. In 2014, one in three hospitals there reported a significant increase in attacks on staff.  The issue had become so serious that the World Health Organization (WHO) has issued guidelines to help to reduce the number of incidents. 

Do not ignore the issue
It is not nice to feel that you are at risk of being attacked in your workplace, but it is not wise to ignore the issue either. Being aware of the danger is the first step to staying safe and dealing successfully with incidents if they occur. If you are alert to the possibility of an attack and know what to do in that situation, you are much more likely to be able to diffuse the situation quickly and stop things from escalating.

Take advantage of conflict training
Increasingly hospitals and clinics are offering their staff training to help them to deal with potentially dangerous situations. This training comes in different forms, and you should take advantage of all of these training opportunities. Understanding how to quickly calm down a combative patient can stop a situation escalating into violence. Simple self-defense techniques can help you to subdue someone who is much bigger and stronger than you are without causing serious injury to them.

Follow the prescribed safety protocols
Most hospitals now have safety protocols in place. Protocols that you should follow if a patient or visitor becomes agitated or violent. These protocols have been carefully thought out, so are often highly effective.
If you are provided with safety equipment like attack alarms or RF tags carry them at all times. Always wear your ID and NHS lanyard. Doing so will make sure that you can easily be identified by security staff when they arrive to sort out a confrontation. Your lanyard is also something most attackers will grab to pull you in for the attack. NHS lanyards breakaway when that happens, which gives you a few seconds to get away. If the attacker grabs your arm, the chances of getting away and not getting hurt are low.

Always report incidents
If you do experience an incident, it is very important to report it even if you are not injured. Doing so ensures that the managers of the facility you work in understand just how big an issue personal attacks are, enabling them to allocate the necessary funds and resources to deal with the issue.
If you are concerned about a situation, make sure that you talk to your manager about it. Bear in mind that it is hard for those who do not work on the wards to see the danger. You have to make them aware of the situation before they can take the necessary steps to protect you.