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Coming Soon - Regular Features

I've received a lot of positive feedback about the blog so, thank you!  In light of that, I've decided to do some regular posts on specific topics.  You can sign up to receive emails of the posts above.   

Here are the working titles and suggestions are welcome.  

Surviving Spinning Plates
  • For new graduate nurses, these posts will include survival tips for getting through the first year.  Evidence-based, of course!  The NPR post about nurses and their working conditions inspired the title.
  • For experienced nurses, share your stories from the frontlines and what you do to get through the day and make sure your patients get excellent care.
Global Health Careers
  • A frequent question from my students is how to build a career in global health.  Posts here will offer some case examples and advice from experienced nurses who work around the world on the frontlines, making policy, and conducting research.
Conversations with M&J
  • Veterans from the recent wars in Iraq and Afghanistan need effective help from nurses.  Two former students, M&J have offered to have a conversation a couple of times a month to offer advice to bedside nurses for how to best care for vets.  Both M&J were medics in the wars.
Back to School
  • The 2011 Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and Institute of Medicine "Future of Nursing" report  set the stage for major changes in the profession.  It also means more opportunities than ever before for nurses with advanced degrees, but which one do you choose?  Will a masters be enough or is a doctorate in order for your future dreams?  This section will cover the pros and cons of different advanced degrees in nursing, along with what you need to do to be prepared for graduate school.
The Job Hunt
  • I'll continue with inspired stories from students seeking their first nursing jobs and some helpful job search stratgies.
  • Reserved for snippets from around the web that you all might find noteworthy for clinical practice or influence policies that directly affect you and your work.  When I'm out of the country, I'll also highlight some stories of nurses from wherever I've landed. 

Starting May 29, 2012, start looking for the regular features.


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There Are Other Masters Degrees Besides a Nurse Practitioner - Part I

It strikes me that many students and nurses do not seem to know about the "other" masters degree options for nurses.  Everyone seems to want to be a nurse practitioner these days.  Now, that's great news for the primary care provider shortage, but we need nurses with masters degrees who can work in other positions and have other skill sets.
Let's review the other masters degrees in nursing.  Nearest and dearest to my own heart is Nursing Education.  Remember that really cool clinical instructor you had in your entry-level nursing program --that could be you!  Do you like precepting new hires?  Are you the person on your unit who unofficially keeps everyone up-to-date on the latest evidence?  Do you really enjoy patient teaching, whether in the hospital or community setting?  Do you just like to teach?  Nursing education is the right masters for you.  Skills learned in a nursing education masters cannot be learned on the job.  Curriculum writing and program developmen…

Why You Will Get a "Bad" Grade in Nursing School & Why It Will be the Best Thing to Happen to You

Perhaps you have been a straight A student all your life.

Perhaps you had one subject you struggled with, got Bs in it, but mostly As in the rest of your classes.

Then you started nursing school.

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Inevitably, every nursing student gets their definition of a "bad" grade. For some, this is an actual failure of a class and that can happen fo…

Language Barriers and Your Patients - Let the Evidence Guide Your Decisions so You Can Comply with the Law

In almost every health care setting in the United States (US) these days, nurses and other health care providers are dealing with language barriers as part of care delivery more than ever before. In fact, most countries in the world run into some kind of language barrier issue in the health care setting. Global migration means more tourists and immigrants for every country in the world. 
In the US, language access--meaning the availability of interpreters and their services-- is a civil right. The Affordable Care Act (ACA) also added new provisions for health care services providers around language access that are important for you to know. From CME Learning:
New rules on language access were implemented on July 18, 2016. These changes are sweeping in scope as they apply to “every [federal] health program or activity, any part of which receives Federal financial assistance.” Section 1557 is a “non-discrimination” provision that broadly prohibits discrimination in health care or health c…