Family caregivers: Adjust or bust
Your editorial, “Resilience” (April, 2014),* covered more ground than nursing practice itself. My wife, a retired RN, has early-onset Alzheimer disease and I'm the primary family caregiver. I continue to subscribe to Nursing2014 because of the upfront, precise manner you present information in the ever-expanding healthcare field. (The article “Easing the Burden on Family Caregivers” [August, 2013] is another great example.)
Being a family caregiver presents challenges on a daily basis, and I've learned that no two patients, circumstances of care, or caregivers are the same. “Resilience” is at the forefront of wisdom. If you can't adjust, you bust! It's that simple.
Editor's note: For more about supporting family caregivers, see “Caring for the Caregiver” on page 60 of this issue.
“Reaching for Cultural Competence” (June, 2013)* struck a nerve with me. I'm often frustrated when colleagues don't take the time to address cultural diversity and render patient care accordingly. Do we as nurses understand that every patient is unique and cultural differences need to be respected? We need to learn how to begin the talk, then walk the walk.
Nurses should establish a safe, nonpolarized, constructive dialog absent of medical jargon, ambiguity, and metaphor. This can be accomplished by using professional medical interpreters. Nurse administrators can support cultural diversity and competence through hospital-wide education. The Purnell Model of Cultural Competence is a useful tool that can help minimize individual prejudices related to cultural diversity.1
1. Purnell L. The Purnell model for cultural competence. J Multicultural Nurs Health. 2005;11(2):7–15.
I found the article “Plan Ahead, then Sail off to a Fulfilling Retirement,” (July, 2013)* informative and well written. The one question I have that wasn't answered is what to do with my RN license. Since I'm not planning to work in nursing, I could stop renewing my license, which would save the cost of continuing education and renewal fees.
I spoke to someone at the Pennsylvania State Board of Nursing about liability if I do part-time work outside of nursing after I surrender my license. I was told taking a volunteer position in the healthcare field could increase my liability in case of an error. In fact, even caring for a relative, neighbor, or child could cause liability problems. I think it would be helpful to bring this to the attention of the many retired nurses now volunteering and caring for people outside of their families.
—ALFRED J. HOLLAND, JR.
Glen Ellyn, Ill.
—ANDREA CRAIG, BSN, RN
San Antonio, Tex.
—ALEXIS SHIPMAN, RN
* Individual subscribers can access articles free online at http://www.nursing2014.com.