online DNP programs to receive doctoral degrees, and some spend as much time receiving specialized training as doctors.
Nurses do more than just administer medications and assist doctors. Many of them save lives on a regular basis without receiving any type of gratitude. Additional important jobs a nurse takes on during his or her workday include:
Taking the Time to Know You
Doctors are often in and out of a patient’s room, and don’t particularly take the time to really get to know a patient – especially in a hospital setting. Nurses, on the other hand, work more closely with patients and really take the time to get to know their personalities and needs. By knowing a patient more intimately, nurses are better able to determine how a patient is feeling and how they are progressing in their recovery. The ability to get to know patients more closely also allows nurses to work more collaboratively with patients, and patients who have a hand in creating their treatments are more likely to succeed.
Traveling to Where They Are Needed
As the number of people needing healthcare due to age has increased, the demand for nurses has increased exponentially. Hospitals and care facilities throughout the United States have had a high demand for well-trained nurses, and offer temporary contracts and high salaries to nurses who are willing to travel. Travel nursing jobs in Hawaii offer nurses beautiful ocean beaches while those in Colorado afford nurses who prefer the snowbird lifestyle a chance to regularly visit the Rockies. Regardless of the scenery, many nurses are willing to fulfill the need of different hospitals, and sacrifice a more stationary lifestyle to offer people great healthcare.
Focusing on Prevention
Traditionally, the healthcare model was focused on treating patients after they were diagnosed with an illness. However, as the cost of healthcare rises in the United States, current healthcare professionals are shifting their focus on disease and illness prevention. Prior to this shift in healthcare, nurses always predominately focused on prevention by educating patients on how to live healthier lifestyles. As efforts continue to focus on disease and illness prevention treatment models, nurses will only become more important in their roles.
A doctor may be the one to come in and give a final say, but nurses are the individuals who actually take the time to provide one on one care. They make sure that patients receive their medications on time, make sure patient conditions remain hygienic, and ensure that patient needs are met. Nurses are often first responders as well, and are the ones who notice when a patient’s condition is deteriorating, stable, or improving – ensuring that quality care is met as soon as it is needed.
Serving as a Liaison
Because nurses work closely with both patients and doctors, they serve as liaisons. Doctors aren’t always the best at using nonmedical jargon to explain a patient’s condition and often aren’t trained to have the best customer service. To ensure that patient’s understand their diagnosis, treatment, and prognosis, nurses take the time to thoroughly explain doctor’s orders. Nurses will also relay the patient’s needs, concerns, or questions to doctors to make sure that the patient is actually receiving the care they desire.
Nurses work long hours and overnight shifts. They clean up the messes no one else wants to deal with. They provide support to not only patients, but their family members as well. They give shots, medications, check vitals, and offer recommendations to both patients and doctors. Nurses are a vital part of any care facility, and they will only continue to grow in their importance as we develop more sustainable healthcare models.
This is a blog post by Nancy Evans.