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The Issues and Challenges Faced by Nurses in The Field of Healthcare

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The Issues and Challenges Faced by Nurses in The Field of Healthcare essay

From the spectator’s position, nurses are seen as hardworking and loving caregivers among their communities and hospitals. Beyond this, nurses are also individuals with thoughts, feelings and limitations to how much stress they can handle. In recent years, the amount of nurses in the workforce has not only decreased, the nursing community has grown discontent. Moreover, “prior to the ’90s, the nurse-patient ratios were very good, yet today we find the UC System is emulating the for-profit system. It is seen as the thing to do — you must run a hospital now as a profit-making center.” The world of medicine not only deals with the infirmed, it also serves as an economic powerhouse in the modern world. As a major form of business, the medical business world dictates how nurses are treated in the workplace. Many nurses feel burned out or displeased with their current nursing positions, and several of them have spoken out about their issues. One nurse in particular claims that “when she got off work, she said, she would go home and pick vicious fights with her boyfriend. She wasn’t sleeping or eating well. She was constantly furious with her co-workers and supervisors. She remembers throwing a temper tantrum one night, flailing around on her bed like a 4-year-old.” Even at a professional adult level, a large enough amount of stress can cause any individual to feel helpless. When this stress is elongated, it can quickly become an issue, especially among individuals that are required to work for long periods of time. Nurses are a prime example of how work-related stress can negatively affect a person.

The Long Hours

With every job, there are job requirements associated with the position and as such, nurses also fall under this unavoidable aspect. The demand for nurses is high, and it increases as more nurses remove themselves from their positions. Nurses have limitations, yet there is still a standard on how their work should be managed. For instance, “the powerful California Nurses Association, NNU pushes for mandated nurse-staffing ratios, which ensure that each nurse has a limit on the number of patients he or she is responsible for.” Even though nurses have a limited number of patients to care for, the long working hours of a medical care giver can grow to be taxing. Each patient requires a different level of care if they are to get any healthier while battling their issues. It is the role of the nurse to provide care for every patient, thus making the job of the nurse more complicated. The parameters of a nurse are also confining is some cases. For instance, “one particular source of stress is the fact that nurses are responsible to their state boards of nursing if they make an error, but they often don’t have the time and flexibility to make sure they’re as careful as they need to be.” Unlike other medical personnel, nurses do not always receive the same benefits as their counterparts. However, the demand for nurses is consistently increasing, indicating that nurses work in a very competitive environment. For example, “in the face of nurse shortages, many hospitals instead put their money into signing bonuses, sometimes spending as much as $30,000 to lure a nurse from a neighboring facility.” Normally, this form of business practice is considered dishonest or unethical in term of how business practices should be conducted. However, some medical facilities have more leverage than others when discussing how a hospital or a medical facility gains its work staff. Nursing is an ever-increasing business practice, yet the reason for this demand is not always explained properly.

The nursing world is so competitive that it causes staffing issues within the medical workplace. Healthcare is an inexhaustible facet of business due to its necessity in society. With that being said, open nursing positions can appear extremely rare under most circumstances, yet hospitals make it their business to acquire the most efficient staff members. Furthermore, “there are ways for hospitals and other health care facilities to address burnout, including making sure they have enough staff and adequate equipment, that there are supportive policies to help everyone work together smoothly and that nurses have a voice in decision-making processes.” Just as any other business practice, the struggle for power is constant in the nursing world. Burnout can occur for a number of different reasons, and the fickle nature of the medical world provides nurses with several more. To make matters worse, “with the aging of the baby boom generation, demand for health care is rising at the same time that large numbers of experienced nurses are retiring. That could lead to the worst nursing shortage in generations within the next decade.” As the medical world increases, the demand on nursing grows with not many individuals available to occupy the position. One of the larger reasons behind this deficit of nurses would be the fact that these nurses realize how easily they can grow to be exhausted from their work. To further examine that point, “nurse burnout really means that a nurse is now disengaged from her work, which is completely different from being stressed out.” If a nurse is disengaged from their work, then the nurses jade reached the inability to care for their patients appropriately. Outside of nurses, medical staff is not always tact when dealing with informed or impaired individuals. Burned out nurses are unfortunate examples of how sensitive the relationship between nursing and quality medicine actually is.

The Lack of Respect

Respect is a fundamental part of the human existence, so much so that nothing would be completed without it. Mutual respect is considered to be common courtesy, yet nurses appear to have a difficult time receiving it. For instance, “a survey earlier this year by travel nursing company RN network found that almost half of the nurses they asked were considering leaving the profession. About a quarter said they felt overworked, 46 percent said their workloads had risen and 41 percent said they’d been harassed or bullied by managers or administrators.” Much like other professional facilities, there are superiors and executive staff members that manage the company itself. In a hospital setting, the level of urgency when referring to nurses and other medical personnel is greatly increased. The lives of others are constantly at stake in the world of medicine, so added stress from a more powerful member of the hospital is not necessary. On another note, “having a more humane system, that’s the path to more providers enticing more RNs into the field and ensuring that they will stay there.” Everyone in the workplace deserves some level of respect if any work is expected to be completed. Nurses are virtually married to caregiving, yet many of them feel forced to abdicate from this principle after working in a poor environment. Researchers claim that “changing the health care system isn’t a magic bullet. After all, burnout is also a serious problem in the government-funded health care system.” Burnout among nurses is recognized as a serious issue, yet not much is being done to alleviate these poor qualities of the work world. To do well in the world, medical or not, there needs to be respect.

Humans are designed to only support so much pressure before collapsing under the weight of their own issues. Nurses are human beings as well, making them vulnerable to the consequences of existing in the world. The medical world is unforgiving, yet it is the nurses who provide the most emotional support towards the patients while functioning in the hospital. Research indicates that “the problem of burnout goes beyond the issue of nurses leaving their jobs. By definition, nurses who are burned out have gone beyond stressed to the point where they can no longer function well at work.” A nurse’s job goes beyond replacing IV fluids and changing bedsheets, despite the stereotypes of the profession. When pressure becomes a constant issue and the mundane transforms itself into an intolerable force, burnout will occur, it is simply a matter of time. To elaborate, “a burnt-out nurse doesn’t care. She’s cynical. She’s irritable. She’s angry. She’s running out of the hospital before the end of her shift.” Nurses can only handle so many patients, listen to so many people, and help only a handful of patients throughout the day. To prevent nurses from burning out, there needs a more functional staffing system must exist.

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The Issues and Challenges Faced by Nurses in the Field of Healthcare. (2018, May 11). GradesFixer. Retrieved December 5, 2022, from
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