Blog

Posts from October, 2013

New Grads Look for Nurse Recruitment Opportunities

Written by LeAnn Thieman, CSP, October 31st, 2013

Although many hospitals have become more conservative in hiring nurses, there are strategies nurses can use to increase their chances of securing a desirable position in the long run.

Many new graduates are looking for the perfect job, but if the labor market is tight in your area, just get a job, even if it is not your “ideal” position. Experience will make you more competitive and help you get that perfect job in the future.

Volunteer. Get experience from working at health fairs or mission trips.

Our nation is expected to be 250,000-500,000 nurses short by 2020. Don’t be discouraged. Nurse recruitment will be on the rise.

To learn more strategies for nurse retention and nurse recruitment visit SelfCare for HealthCare™. Please feel free to CONTACT ME TODAY  to talk about customizing this year-long program for your employees.

Nurse Recruitment Tool: Attract With Life Balance, Not Salaries

Written by LeAnn Thieman, CSP, October 29th, 2013

In the past five years RNs in the USA may have found that salaries have flattened, and in some cases dropped, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Starting in 2009, the median annual wage increases were 2% or less, compared with double or triple that percentage the previous five years. Between 2011 and 2012, the median annual wage for RNs nationally increased only 1%, from $69,110 to $69,935. Data from the American Association of Colleges of Nursing shows that nurse faculty salaries are stagnating as well.

Salary is no longer the main motivating factor in hiring new nurses. Most nurses of all ages are looking for life balance.

To learn more strategies for nurse retention and nurse recruitment visit SelfCare for HealthCare™. Please feel free to CONTACT ME TODAY  to talk about customizing this year-long program for your employees.

Nurse Recruitment Needed for Nursing Informatics Positions

Written by LeAnn Thieman, CSP, October 24th, 2013

Nursing informatics, a fast-growing specialty, has some hospitals struggling to keep pace in learning the best ways to hire and retain these in-demand nurses who combine clinical skills with IT skills to improve patient care.

Technological advances, approval of the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act, and funding for electronic health records technology have contributed to increased job growth in this field.

The Office of the National Coordinator of Health Information Technology anticipates 50,000 new health information technology jobs, including nurse informaticists, will be created within the next few years.

Many hospitals are bringing people on board who are seasoned clinicians in their departments, well respected, and have a long history and commitment to the hospital. This reduces turnover.

To learn how to more about nurse retention and nurse recruitment for nurse informaticists and other nursing positions, visit SelfCare for HealthCare™. CONTACT ME TODAY  to talk about customizing this powerful program for your employees.

Nurse Retention Tool: Invest in Employee Wellness

Written by LeAnn Thieman, CSP, October 22nd, 2013

Ten years ago the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Healthier Worksite Initiative promoted physical activity, nutrition, preventative health screenings and overall healthy choices in the nation’s workplaces through education and examples, such as discount fitness center membership programs and walking trails at the CDC’s headquarters in Atlanta.

Since that time, research has shown the effort has paid off for the nation’s businesses. A Workplace Wellness Programs study by Santa Monica, California-based Rand Corp. and sponsored by the departments of Labor and Health and Human Services showed that approximately half of the nation’s employers offer wellness promotion programs and that participation in them over five years yielded lower health care costs and decreasing health care use for employees. It also noted that wellness programs lead to “statistically significant and clinically meaningful improvements among program participants in exercise frequency, smoking behavior and weight control.”

Although the results are positive, the nation’s workers can see much more success. Some advocate simple strategies such as jogging in place during brainstorming sessions, taking the stairs or having walking meetings. For companies without gym equipment, short bursts of high intensity activities such as full body squats or push-ups for 30 seconds three times a day can have a huge impact in alertness, metabolism and efficiency.

Wellness programs have repeatedly been shown as great investments in employee health. To learn about my 12 month transformational SelfCare for HealthCare™ initiative that increases nurse retention and nurse recruitment CONTACT ME DIRECTLY.

Nurse Retention Issue: Public Health Nursing Shortage

Written by LeAnn Thieman, CSP, October 17th, 2013

Researchers with the University of Michigan Center of Excellence in Public Health Workforce Studies collected data from state and local public health departments and surveyed public health nurses. According to the report released by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the following are some of the suggestions made by the project’s advisory committee:

• Develop feasible opportunities for additional education and training for public health nurses.

• Determine how changes in the functions of public health departments, due to healthcare reform and the transformation of public health agencies’ work, may affect the education public health nurses need.

• Identify options to address concerns about recruitment, compensation and promotion opportunities.

• Conduct follow-up studies to monitor size, composition, capacity and functions of the public health nurse workforce over time, to help ensure the workforce is well-prepared to meet emerging needs.

“It should be a high priority to address gaps and take steps to strengthen the public health nursing workforce,” Pamela G. Russo, MD, MPH, senior program officer for RWJF, said in the news release. As health reform is implemented, and as public health agencies are transforming to a more population health-oriented role in promoting health and protecting communities, public health nurses will need additional training to keep pace with the changes. The size, makeup and preparation of the public health nursing workforce greatly affect the ability of agencies to protect and improve the health of people in their jurisdictions.”

For strategies on how to ease the public health nursing shortage, nurse retention and nurse recruitment visit SelfCare for HealthCare™. Please CONTACT ME DIRECTLY to talk about customizing this powerful program for your employees.

Popular Culture a Barrier to Male Nurse Recruitment and Nurse Retention

Written by LeAnn Thieman, CSP, October 15th, 2013

Fictional male nurses on television are sidelined in supporting roles, the butt of jokes and cast as minorities, all of which makes it harder in reality for male nurse recruitment and nurse retention, according to a new study.

“Students report that popular TV shows can help them choose a career, or that TV perpetuates negative stereotypes about nursing that they then have to address in practice,” said Dr. Roslyn Weaver, an adjunct fellow at the University of Western Sydney School of Nursing and Midwifery, who led the research. “So when men in nursing are almost invisible in popular culture or are stereotyped as incompetent or somehow ‘unmasculine’, then men who choose to enter nursing can find it difficult to combat this. Perhaps reflecting this, there are often higher attrition rates for male students than female students in nursing.”

Men account for roughly 9% of nurses in the USA, according to the census bureau.

With a growing number of men entering the profession, it’s important to examine how male nurses are portrayed in popular culture. Common stereotypes include the nurse who is mistaken for a doctor and the gay or emasculated male nurse. Male nurses and midwives in the shows tend to suffer condescension from their colleagues and patients and are the object of comedy.

Being in the minority may put male nurses at a disadvantage, Weaver said. “This not only means men might be stereotyped but they can also be excluded from particular clinical specialties, face difficulties dealing with older female patients and be expected to do more ‘masculine’ work such as heavier manual work.”

Improving male nurse recruitment efforts could help, and fewer negative stereotypes in television programs might make a difference, the researchers say.

To learn strategies and tactics on nurse retention and nurse recruitment go to SelfCare for HealthCare™. Please CONTACT ME DIRECTLY to talk about customizing this powerful program for your employees.

Good Manners Help with Nurse Retention

Written by LeAnn Thieman, CSP, October 10th, 2013

There is evidence to prove the theory that good manners will open doors that the best education cannot.

A recent survey by OfficeTeam found that 80% of executives say clothing affects an employee’s chances of earning a promotion. But the main complaint in the work place is the inappropriate use of technology.

A recent study by Robert Half Technology found that 64% of surveyed CIOs said the increase use of mobile devices, including cell phones and tablets, has led to a significant increase in breaches of workplace etiquette. That’s up from the 51% just three years ago.

It’s for these reasons that The Protocol School of Washington® established “Bring Your Manners to Work Day” on the first Friday of September. This day is intended to remind employees and employers that manners matter. Bad manners aren’t just bad form, they’re bad for business.

They offer the following dos and don’ts:

* Don’t cell yell. People tend to speak three times louder on a cell phone than in person. Mind your volume.

* Do respect people’s personal space while on the phone. A ‘safe cell distance’ is considered to be 10 feet.

* Don’t check your phone during meals and meetings. Instead keep phones off or on vibrate and pay attention to and engage those around you.

* Do dress appropriately for the work place. In other words, save the see-through dresses, sandals with socks, Lycra bike shorts, muscle shirts, and plunging necklines for other occasions.

* Don’t “borrow” from other people’s desks or lunches without permission.

* Do clean up your messes; don’t expect others to clean up after you.

* Don’t gossip. Over-sharing about your own personal life should also be avoided.

* Do be on time to meetings, conference calls and appointments.

* Don’t sink to someone else’s standards. Just because coworkers behave badly is not a reason for you to follow suit. Always keep your poise and do the right thing, even if you’re doing it alone.

Nurses and all healthcare workers need to abide by these “rules.” Good manners contribute to healthy work environments…another factor aiding nurse retention and nurse recruitment.

Gain strategies for nurse retention and nurse recruitment by visiting SelfCare for HealthCare™. Please CONTACT ME DIRECTLY to talk about customizing this powerful program for your facility.

 

Nurse Recruitment Needed in Public Health

Written by LeAnn Thieman, CSP, October 8th, 2013

More than 2 in 5 state health departments report having “a great deal of difficulty” hiring nurses, and nearly 40% of state and local health departments have insufficient resources to fill vacant nurse positions, according to the report released by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

Researchers with the University of Michigan Center of Excellence in Public Health Workforce Studies collected data from state and local public health departments and surveyed public health nurses. Although those surveyed reported concerns about job stability, compensation and career growth with current budget constraints, they also reported very high levels of job satisfaction and felt they are making a difference in their communities.

Such factors could bolster recruitment efforts, according to an RWJF news release.

The report offers a snapshot of the public health nurse workforce — estimated at 34,521 full-time equivalent RNs.

Among the key findings:

• Nearly 2 in 5 respondents to the survey (39%) report their highest nursing degree is a diploma/associate’s degree. Only 10 states require public health nurses to have BSNs.

• Providing clinical services is part of the work done, but these nurses assume a wide variety of roles, including health promotion, disease surveillance, community health assessment, policy development and more.

• The public health nurse workforce is aging, but most RNs do not intend to retire within the next five years.

• Recruitment and hiring of RNs into public health nurses positions can be challenging, particularly for state health departments.

• Lack of promotion opportunities is a concern.

• Public health nurses report extremely high levels of job satisfaction despite reporting high levels of dissatisfaction with salaries.

More public health nurses will be needed to meet the growing demand. To learn about nurse recruitment and nurse retention go to http://www.leannthieman.com/. CONTACT ME DIRECTLY to discuss my new initiative, SelfCare for HealthCare™, Your Guide to Physical, Mental and Spiritual Health.

Nurse Retention Strategy: How to Make Employee Wellness Work

Written by LeAnn Thieman, CSP, October 3rd, 2013

In a paper published in the May/June edition of the American Journal of Health Promotion, researchers at the Mayo Clinic found people who use wellness centers the most were most likely to experience an increase in their physical QOL (quality of life) scores, the percentage in this segment rising from 59.4 to 80.4%.

The researchers, however, found that mental health was another story.

According to the study, mental QOL measures didn’t change significantly for high users and declined for low users, with the percentage of those reporting a positive mental QOL decreasing from 51.4% to 34.5%.

Researchers wrote, “These findings suggest that the use of a wellness center can improve physical health and has limited or no effect on maintaining mental health.”

Dr. Matthew Clark, a professor of psychiatry and psychology at the Mayo Clinic and the lead author of the study, suggests the findings point to the need for companies to take a more holistic view of their wellness initiatives.

“If we’re going to have a wellness center,” he says, “we should look at whether it actually improves your quality of life, including mental quality of life.” Too often, he says, employers focus on physical activities, such as walking programs and exercise programs, but overlook other areas such as mental well-being.

Mental and spiritual health are too often a forgotten component of the package. Since stress is a key problem for many healthcare givers, we need to meet their mental and spiritual needs as well.

Please CONTACT ME DIRECTLY to learn about new initiative, SelfCare for HealthCare™, Your Guide to Physical, Mental and Spiritual Health. To learn strategies for nurse retention and nurse recruitment visit www.leannthieman.com.

Nurse Retention: Nurse Shortage in Palliative Care and Hospice

Written by LeAnn Thieman, CSP, October 1st, 2013

Twenty-five percent of Medicare dollars, more than $125 billion a year, is spent on services for 5% of beneficiaries in the last year of their lives, according to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS).

Yet there is a growing shortage of specially trained palliative care nurses and physicians. How can we care for the growing population of chronically ill in a more effective, compassionate manner?

Obviously, we need to train more nurses and physicians in the service of palliative care, but that may be easier said than done. Data from the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine shows that at least 15,000 palliative care physicians will be needed by 2024, but currently only about 200 a year receive training.

As for nurses, fellowships and certification programs are available, but not nearly enough, especially when the goal is to provide training for every nurse who works with chronically ill patients.

We need to see more advanced practice nurses in palliative care. Palliative care, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), is an approach to treatment that improves the quality of life for both patients and families who face life-threatening illnesses. The goal is to relieve suffering by identifying clients’ needs early on, including physical, psychosocial and spiritual.

It is often recommended that physicians and nurses spend at least a year or two working in primary care, ICU or the ER before seeking training in palliative care.

For nurses, the End-of-Life Nursing Education Consortium (ELNEC) has developed both general and advanced palliative care courses. The curriculum includes modules on pain and symptom management; ethical and legal issues; cultural considerations and more. The Hospice and Palliative Nurse Association (HPNA), established in 1986, offers a certification program.

Once again the evidence is clear. We need more nurses to meet this demand. Learn how to prepare for the nursing shortage and gain strategies for nurse retention and nurse recruitment by visiting SelfCare for HealthCare™. Please CONTACT ME DIRECTLY to talk about customizing this powerful program for your employees.