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April 23 Salon: Healing for Nurses. April 24, 2008

Posted by mariemanthey in Nursing Salons, Values.
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Last nights Salon was another wonderful experience!

We touched on a variety of subjects from unhealthy work groups to the challenges of ethnic differences in end-of-life care to age disparities in nursing practice and their effect on workplace dynamics.

Take for example, that last item. Old-timers complained that  new nurses spend too much time on the computer and not enough with patients. Newer nurses complained about seasoned nurses being too judgmental about patient behaviors and values that are different than those held by the nurses. These comments yielded a rich and meaningful conversation that ended with a strong connection between the older and younger nurses in the room.

Another rich theme of the night was how do nurses handle the stresses and strong feelings that occur on the job (i.e., death of a beloved patient, family decisions about end-of-life care that result in patient suffering ) when they go off duty? Do our families really want to know about these issues? The consensus was “No!”  The conversation around how process these emotions when there is no one to talk to at home and no time to talk at work was really helpful.

Actually for most people, these Salons are providing this kind of an opportunity to process their work experiences in a supportive and healthy way. The check-out always yields comments about hope for the future, pride in the profession, and  personal validation of experiences.