specialization: Family Nurse Practitioner.
As a nurse practitioner, the major roles include the assessment of the needs of the patients. A nursing practitioner also orders and interprets test from laboratories, they do illness and disease diagnosis, medication prescription and formulate plans for treatment. There are a number of challenges that face the nurse in their field of practices. This paper will focus to discuss the hazards in the workspace of these practitioners. It will also seek to find a way of solving these challenge using innovative means.
The Problem of Interest
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Hazard in The Nursing Field.
The nursing field of practice is one of the most dangerous places of working as one does work in a delicate environment where one is in the risks of being infected or even injuring oneself. Nurses are faced with a number of risks in daily job activities. Some of these hazards include injuries, flu germs, hand washing –related dermatitis and pathogens that are based in the blood among others.
According to the report produced by OSHA, about 5.6 million of 12.2 million workers are under the risk of being exposed to blood borne pathogens. This is a big number of health workers under the risk meaning that soon there will be a shortage of health nursing or health workers in general. Moreover, the rates of risks are higher in the health care industry than any other industries. This industry has registered around 35000 injuries covering different parts of the body. These range from the shoulders, hands, feet, and back. These statistics are according to the Bureau Labor Statistics (Gooch, 2015).
Apart from the acute injuries discussed, they also suffer harm exposed on their hands. From a recent study carried out in the University of Manchester, the health workers that follow protocols are 4.5 times exposed to skin damage risks. The report also reported up to 25 percent of cases of irritant contact dermatitis.
These individuals also get exposed to infectious diseases in their areas of practice. One of the most commonly contacted infection is Hepatitis B (HBV). This is infection can be contacted via blood contact, feces, saliva, and semen. This instrument of spreading the infection is in contact with the patient and also the needles (Gooch, 2015). Nursing practitioners also risk exposure to toxic substances in the clinical environment. Radiation is another risk that comes majorly from the ionizing radiation. Complications associated with radiation include skin cancer, leukemia, and cancer among others. One comes to contact with this radiation in the instances of performing x-ray scans. Another challenge that faces nursing practitioners is stress. This is experienced mostly among the nurses who work with the patients that are terminally or chronically ill (NCBI, 2016).
The focus of the research is on the articles that are based on nursing practices. These articles also further narrow down to the specific problems facing the nursing practitioners. The aim is to find a solution to the above-identified problem.
It was crucial to put up ways to protect nursing practitioners. It is important to take extra measures when working in various situations. Capacity building of the nurses on the safety measures while working is very important. They should also be educated on using the protective gear which will reduce exposure to risks. For instance, the use of antiviral face mask inactivates the 99.99 percent of the flu viruses tested in the laboratory.
Literature review: Nursing problem.
Nursing problems dates as early as the period when the nursing profession started; these challenges range from the work based issues, personal issues to the working environment challenges that nurse’s face. Looking at various literature sources, the problems are comprehensively discussed and also potential solutions proposed to help address some of these challenges facing nurses in their profession according to the article “Problem facing nursing profession” by Iglehart, (1987). Nurses continue to fight with various struggles ranging from low wages to poor working condition that has not only jeopardized their safety but also endangered the safety of their patients too. This has greatly affected their output in their professions as they have to be extra careful when exercising their mandate to ensure that they remain safe. This has reduced their capabilities in treating and diagnosing their patients as a poor working environment makes them hesitant about what they can do at the prevailing working conditions.
The limitedness in the number of nurses in various healthcare remains to be one of the major problem facing nurses in their professions. According to the article by Peterson (2001), nurses tend to strain their efforts to serve the overwhelming number of patients in various health care facilities. Although there is a recommendation of the number of patients that can be served by one nurse, there remains a serious challenge on the effectiveness of the nurse’s, especially when their efforts are strained. When the workforce is strained, there is a tendency to compromise the quality of the service rendered by the nurses. This has remained to be a serious problem in the nursing profession. The problem has been there for quite some time, and although there has been some improvement in staffing in a various healthcare organization and the number of patients that can be served by one nurse.
For quite some time, the safety of the nurses while practicing their profession has been a major issue of concern. This is not a new challenge that is experienced today, the problem has been there, and despite the challenge being there for quite some time, and it remains to be a major challenge facing nurses. It is reported that the health of the nurses has been greatly attributed to the lack of proper working condition for the nurses as they practice their profession. With cases of hepatitis B being reported frequently in nurses working in poor working condition. In some cases, the contact of the nurse with highly infectious diseases has increased the risk of nurses contracting these diseases, therefore, affecting their output. With many incidences reported where nurses have contracted diseases while exercising their profession this is a major call for improvement in the working environment for the nurses to ensure that their health is nor endangered as they try to save lives.
Poor remuneration remains a serious challenge affecting nurses in their profession. In many incidences, the minimum wage for a nurse remains significantly low as compared to the demands in their work and also the risk of the exposure. According to Hayes et al. (2006), poor remuneration of nurses remains to be a significant problem affecting them in their profession; this has led to increased turnover whose implications have been negative when it comes to the provision of healthcare services in the healthcare organization. There call the necessary agencies to chip in and make the required regulations that can lay the guideline to be followed when it comes to remunerating nurses to solve this challenge.
Gooch, K. (2015, August 13). 5 of the biggest issues nurses face today. Becker’s Hospital Review. Retrieved from https://www.beckershospitalreview.com/human-capital-and-risk/5-of-the-biggest-issues-nurses-face-today.html
Gooch, K. (2015, July 15) 4 common nursing hazards demanding hospitals’ attention. Clinical Leadership & Infection Control. Retrieved from https://www.beckershospitalreview.com/quality/4-common-nursing-hazards-demanding-hospitals-attention.html
NCBI (2016). Nursing Health & Environment: Strengthening the Relationship to Improve the Public Health. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK232400/
Iglehart, J. K. (1987). Problems facing the nursing profession.
Peterson, C. A. (2001). Nursing shortage: Not a simple problem-no easy answers. Online Journal of Issues in Nursing, 6(1), 1-14.
Hayes, L. J., O’Brien-Pallas, L., Duffield, C., Shamian, J., Buchan, J., Hughes, F., … & Stone, P. W. (2006). Nurse turnover: a literature review. International journal of nursing studies, 43(2), 237-263.