How Nurses Can Protect Themselves as They Work to Save Others
The Cost of Caring
- Feelings for the other
- Positive (love)
- Associated with good health
- Prosocial and motivating
- Projected on one’s self
- Negative (stress)
- Associated with poor health and burnout
- Non-social, creating a desire to withdraw
How to Care for a Clinician
The Importance of Primary Prevention
- Choose a work environment that values clinicians. Spend time shadowing on a unit before accepting a position to gauge what it would be like to work there. Magnet certified hospitals, for example, are deliberate in their decisions that affect the work environment and must meet certain criteria including low turnover, high employee satisfaction, and autonomy.
- Bring best practices to the workplace. Joining professional associations and reading journals are great ways to stay engaged.
- Assert cultural change. A practice called “the pause” was started by an emergency department nurse to recognize the death of a patient and has become a nationwide phenomenon.