"Nurses are leaving in droves and novice nurses are teaching more novice nurses. According to the RN Work Project, a study performed over 10 years to track career changes among new nurses, 17.5% of new nurses left their position within a YEAR of starting a new job, 33% within two years and 60% within eight year."

Bedside nursing is what we all know. Bedside nursing is defined as nursing in direct contact with patients in a hospital or long term care setting. These nurses assess patients frequently, monitor and record vital signs, prepare for procedures and operations, closely monitor for sign and symptoms of disorders, and act as an advocate for patients when reporting to the interdisciplinary team. The direct and immediate care prevents the patients from going further in a disease process.

The topic of bedside nursing has increased throughout the last few years based on the drop of nurses working in the bedside. Newer nurses are going to grad school and seasoned nurses are retiring. In doctor offices, specialized clinics, and even home health, the requirement of nurses have decreased leading to lower ratio of nurses working in the hospital settings. From speaking with other novice nurses, working bedside has become tough. The wear and tear on the body and the instability of the workload is causing everyone to switch jobs and even quit the profession.

Why are nurses moving on and leaving bedside?

Millennials are moving up in the nursing filed.

In today’s time, the millennials are all about success and making money. Coming into nursing is a start to making a change. Yes the money as a new nurse is ok, but when they are knowledgeable about making 100k a year, they will go for the bigger picture. And the bigger picture is to get their Masters/ Doctorate Degrees as Nurse Practitioners or CRNAs (Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists). Both of the Advanced Practice Nurse professions are ranked to be the highest paying positions in nursing. The year 2018 is seen to be where millennials are ambitious goal seekers willing to do what they can to get what they want. Bedside nursing, in this aspect, allows a nurse to grow enough to get experience before applying for grad school. After some time, they will leave bedside and work in doctor’s offices or clinics as an Advance Practice Professional.

Short staff

From city to city, hospitals are having shortages of Registered Nurses. Over the last few years, there has been an increase in nurses entering nursing. Some are leaving because of the increase in requirements as a RN, and others are leaving beause they are not into the profession passionately . With this, units are becoming shorter and shorter. Baby boomers retiring causes an even more increase in the shortage.. Short staff= less support, less help on the unit and more responsibilities. Nurse burnout is the outcome and some may even leave the profession for good.

Overall, bedside nursing has not been the ultimate goal of many novice nurses in the 21st century. At some point in time, the nurses will seek to leave the bedside to become an Advanced Practice Professional or take a break from nursing to pursue a career elsewhere. Bedside nursing is challenging for most nurses and the shortage will continue to grow.

~Nurse Bria