Sunday, March 15, 2009

Double invisibility...

(Reprinted from the blog: The Last Nurse with permission by the author.)
It started with a hard drive meltdown. I had no files. The I.T. guys fixed my five-year old company laptop so I could email - but everything I'd saved was gone.

They took out the hard drive to send it to a specialist to get fixed and then to have files retrieved.

That was four weeks ago and one of those weeks I was on vacation. So I get back from vacation and nada- zip-nothing. No email, no post-it note - nuttin' honey from any I.T. guy about the hard drive. So I wrote an email to them with a cc to my boss. That was when somehow it got moving.

But, you see, I'm "just a nurse." I may be a department head - but I'm still "just a nurse." My department of QA nurses may have helped their facilities get the best Department of Health surveys of the last 10 years, but we're still "just nurses." I mean - why should WE get new laptops. Give them to the accounting guys and the marketing people.

Ah, yes, the marketing people - at least one doesn't even know who their building's Regional Nurse is. Not that the Regional Nurse is that important - she was just the facility's acting DON for months (while I covered that regional nurse's region...ahem...).

So just what about the term "nursing home" don't you understand?

Why it's the word "nursing" - as in just a....

May I inform anyone reading this, that nurses and nurse aides are the ones who do the scut work. We are the ones who clean up all bodily excrements. We are the ones who clean and feed and bathe. We are the ones who give the meds, make the beds, walk the halls, help to move. We are the ones who redress the wounds, turn and reposition, give the injections, start the tube feedings, talk to the families, get yelled at by families, doctors, corporate.

Nursing - that's who does the care.
Not marketing.
Not accounting.
Not dietary.
Not social service.
Not secretaries.

We are the ones who get hit, punched, kicked.

We are the ones who do the work - who give the care - who care.

What don't you understand about that?

And sometimes we need a hard drive fixed before weeks have gone by.


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