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Nursing Then and Now

Nursing Then and Now

Sean Dent | Scrubs Magazine

Change takes courage, adaptation and adjustment. And for some fellow colleagues this is a hard pill to swallow. Some still believe in the previous mindset of ‘getting’ your experience first. You must first learn to crawl, before you can walk. And walk before you can run. (Ergo the specialty nursing example I spoke about.)

The truth of the matter, today’s nurse has had to learn to hit the ground running. Heck, running at a sprinter’s pace. The present day nurse has had to learn from the very beginning of their education that nothing is given to you. You need to earn everything. The learning curve may not have changed much, but the pace of the curve has. 10 years ago basic nursing education was at a minimum of 3-4 yrs. Now you can enroll in programs that are 18 months long (of course you have to have your prerequisite courses completed before hand).

Today’s nurse is used to the fast paced learning. Most information has been shuttle-passed to them and face-slapping, eye-popping, stomach-turning return demonstration clinical exams are not only the norm, but are generally an expected portion of their basic education. 10 years ago, a new nurse, green behind the ears, with no experience under their belt being hired into an ICU was unheard of. Now it’s common.

New grads are being hired into the busiest, fastest-paced, high-octane environments and their flourishing. The goal is to simply survive, and most exceed that goal. This generation of new grads are hungry, agile, forthright and humble. The hard part is letting them learn at their pace. A pace most seasoned nurses’ think is too fast.

This new found speed does not increase the likelihood of things being missed. In fact it encourages the opposite. The attention to detail in this ever-changing fast-paced learning environment is uncanny, and unmatched.

The next time you meet a nurse, and learn of their ‘time-in-grade’. Don’t be so quick to judge. You’d be surprised what they’ve learned, and how far they have come.

Carpe Diem

Times.. They Are A-Changin’ originally posted on My Strong Medicine.

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