Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Shift work shortens one's life expectancy

I read an article once, that said shift workers die sooner than the Monday to Friday type.
I know the Circadian rhythm (normal sleep pattern) can get severely messed up when working nights, and I can never get even five hours of full sleep. I find that I'm tired and maybe even a little miserable the next day or so.
I think of the older nurses that I work with, and wonder how much they've actually shortened their lives by working a sometimes thankless job.
One of my patients actually told me that "We're keeping you employed. If I wasn't sick, you wouldn't have a job." True, but I didn't have the heart to tell him that people will be forever falling and breaking hips, smashing cars up, and falling off of ladders while attempting to put up Christmas lights or cleaning gutters. (Yes, those are the most common injuries!)

Which brings me to another point. One of my co-workers was saying that her son's boss took him aside, and told him he was doing a good job, and that he was a true asset to the company. I think of my place of employment, and see that there is rarely any team building or positive support offered to any of us. No, sorry, I take that back. Almost 7000 of us enjoy that awesome leathery "hot dog" that we get every year at our "Staff appreciation BBQ".

As I sit back and watch the Management give themselves a hefty pay raise every year, and wonder why it's necessary for assistants to have assistants, I wonder why they can't just spend a little more on the people below them. You know, the ones that actually DO something and are the people which represent the Hospital....

No matter what they say, I think a "job well done" is appropriate, and those 3 small words are frankly all the appreciation that I need. Keep the hot dogs.

This rant brought to you by Chuck Norris. Kicking ass since 1982.


mike said...

I hear ya my friend.

Somehow management now a days just doesn't understand how to deal with employees in terms of boosting moral. A crappy processed meatcile certainly isn't the way to go. Having great managment seems to be rare these days... if I ever become a member of the elite I'd like to be one of those rare ones.

Get plenty of sleep and try not to go too crazy with this shift.

Ali said...

Miserable? You? Never! (he,he)

Well, if your bosses won't tell you that you do a good job - all you have to do is listen to your patients. You know those old ladies (and some of the young ones) love you, and you connect with pretty much everyone.

Plus, I know you are fantastic at your job...even IF I gag half the time you are telling me work stories!

krista said...

I have this conversation with people all the time. A thank you and you're doing a great job is all most people are looking for. Not raises (which are always nice) or hot dog days, just a personal thank you.

John said...

I did shifts for a while - not good. I ended up volunteering for permanant nights to stop all the switching around!

Sadly, in your profession, those above are often so far up their own back sides they would never dream of saying anything nice to you, while grateful patients tend to miss their chance to say thank you. As someone who has seen rather more of the British health system that he would have liked, I would like to thank you and all others like you who care about those you are treating.

Chris said...

Thanks John. I appreciate that.
Now, is it true that the UK is still actively recruiting Canadian nurses?

John said...

As far as I am aware we are actively recruiting from everywhere in the Commonwealth. But don't even think about it!

Logziella said...

Well, I for one am totally grateful for those of you in the medical profession!! You are doing something that some people can't do and I am so glad you are there!

Sorry, I don't have a hotdog to give you but...Thank-You!anyway!! :0)