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You can’t be an obese nurse in Japan
If you’re considering moving to Japan to try your hand at nursing, you may want to check if foreigners are included in the two-year-old law that bans the Japanese from being fat. In 2008, the Japanese government decreed that its citizens had to slim down to reduce the chances of developing lifestyle-related diseases, such as metabolic syndrome—or metabo, as they call it there.
2. Mercury thermometers aren’t disposable.
It’s not likely you would find mercury thermometers or sphygmomanometers in most hospitals these days (unless you’re looking at a historical display!), but you could come across them while doing home healthcare or if you’re working in an underprivileged part of the country.
In states like California, it’s the law for overtime work to be paid at overtime pay (time and a half). This is for all employees who work more than eight hours in a day or 40 hours in a week. Of course, this is adapted in the healthcare setting, where nurses often work 12-hour shifts. Obviously the system wouldn’t work if everyone were paid for four hours overtime every time they worked. There are also some groups of employees who are exempt from the overtime law, but nursing isn’t on the list. Who is exempted? Sheepherders. Go figure.
Nurses who work in Wales, in the United Kingdom, don’t have to worry about what type of uniforms or scrubs to buy, or if cartoon character scrubs would be acceptable—they don’t have a choice as to what to wear and they don’t have to buy their work clothes. The uniforms are provided to them by the government.
Clinical nurse specialists wear royal blue.
Staff nurses wear hospital blue.
Staff midwives wear postman blue.
Healthcare support workers wear green.
Nursery nurses wear aqua green.
6. Working in Saudi Arabia doesn’t mean you’ll get Christmas off.
One of the biggest drawbacks in nursing is having to work on the holidays, such as Thanksgiving and Christmas. If you decide to work in Saudi Arabia, an attractive option for many young nurses because of the salary and healthcare facilities, don’t assume you’ll have Christmas off because it’s a Muslim country. While it’s true that you won’t have to compete with everyone else who wants December 25 as a day off, Christmas isn’t recognized in Saudi Arabia and you’ll likely be expected to work just as everyone else does. It’s just another day.
If you’re working over the weekend at Worthing Hospital in West Sussex, England, you could—without reprimand—ignore a doctor’s order for blood tests if he (or she) doesn’t write “please” on the requisition.
On the surface, having to pass an English test to receive an Australian nursing license seems to make perfect sense. After all, if you can’t communicate in English, how can you be an effective nurse in Australia? The twist here is you have to take the English test even if you come from England…where you speak English.
If you’re a single nurse and you fall in love while working in the UAE, be careful. Although some rules in the UAE aren’t quite as strict for noncitizens, it is still forbidden for single foreign women to have children out of wedlock. In Dubai, single women who are pregnant may either marry the father or leave the country; the other option is being arrested for fornication. In the other emirates, single women who are pregnant may be arrested or deported.
Some hospitals in the United States are implementing “English only” rules in certain parts of their facility. Often, these rules are instituted because of complaints from people not being able to understand some nurses who speak other languages among themselves.
Do you know of any obscure laws that unwitting nurses could all too easily break?