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11 Nurses Share Why They Decided to Leave the Bedside

The struggle to retain nurses confounds many a healthcare administrator, as numerous studies that place annual nurse turnover around 17 percent can attest. For employees actually performing this work, however, the reasons behind this harrowing stat are clear.

Understaffing, low-pay, more high-acuity patients, abuse from peers and leaders, physical injuries and burnout — these factors and a lack of adequate response from administration all drive nurses away from the bedside. But according to a recent Twitter chat, such experiences are just the tip of the emotionally-exhausted iceberg.

RELATED: Physical, Sexual Violence Against Long-Term Care Staffers is a Real and Pervasive Problem

Every week, Lessons from the Bedside (@lessonsbedside) hosts a conversation to encourage clinicians to talk about the challenges they face (where to begin…). A particularly captivating one, held in early September, elicited dozens of responses about why nurses decide to end their battle with the bedside.

Below are some of the most compelling stories…

Waning patient safety

Charting and auditing and boxes, oh my!

Day-shift vs. night

School as the solution

Did we mention charting?

Feeling your mental health suffer

Where does the PTO go?

Pay the physical toll

Minimal job flexibility

A little R-E-S-P-E-C-T

Don’t quit your day job

The upside is that earning a nursing degree, especially if you go back to get your doctorate or master’s, provides you with opportunities to work in a variety of settings. But the bedside shouldn’t be forgotten.

Join Lessons from the Bedside’s #TweetRN chat Mondays at 9 p.m. ET.

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