How And Why Nurses Get Overworked, Overwhelmed, And Undersupported — And What This Means For Your Health

Nursing isn’t for the faint of heart. This admirable, but challenging profession can take both a physical and mental toll on hardworking nurses, who often lack the support they so desperately need. In turn, patients suffer worse health outcomes. Hence, the urgent need for the medical profession to address the following issues in modern nursing:

Excessive Hours

Nurses work long hours, often remaining within medical facilities long after their twelve-hour shifts have technically ended. Grueling schedules are especially common among newly-licensed nurses, with research from the New York University’s Rory Meyers College of Nursing suggesting that over half work voluntary overtime.

Numerous studies link nurse fatigue to medical errors. Nurses who work overtime hours or back-to-back shifts are far more likely to make key errors that could easily be avoided with sufficient rest.

Mental Health Concerns

Overworked nurses are that much more vulnerable to mental health issues, which run rampant throughout the medical community. Depression and anxiety, in particular, are at an all-time high. Unfortunately, these remain largely unspoken epidemics, with few nurses receiving the care they so urgently need.

Alarming research published in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine reveals that nurses suffering mental health issues are far more likely to make medical errors on the job. Worse, many self-medicate, with some even under the influence of alcohol or drugs when they arrive at work.

A call to action from the Association of periOperative Registered Nurses references the “true and startling nature of mental health issues among nurses” and a research-backed link to “medical errors and an upswing in reported nurse suicides.”

Medical negligence warrants urgent attention. Do your part by holding responsible employees and facilities accountable. Look to the lawyers of Regan Zambri Long PLLC for assistance with every aspect of your medical malpractice case.