Why 1 nurse will never return to the bedside 

Despite wanting to return to the medical field, Theresa Brown, PhD, BSN, RN, said she is unlikely to return because of the "present form" of bedside nurses' work, she wrote July 22 in Medscape.

Years of overwork and underappreciation experienced by front-line staff were "merely intensified by the pandemic," and Dr. Brown used an analogy of swimming in an "under resourced pool" to clarify the hardships faced by front-line workers.

"If after all that, someone asked me, 'Do you want to keep swimming for exercise?' I would of course answer yes, emphatically, but not in that place," Dr. Brown wrote. "The problem is, from what I hear anecdotally, working as a nurse in so many hospitals right now is very similar to swimming in that underresourced pool."

Citing various studies on satisfaction and retention, Dr. Brown went on to explain how patient safety is affected by current workforce shortages.

"The connection between inadequate nurse staffing and increased patient mortality has been well established by research," she wrote. I have been talking and writing about this frightening reality for so long to so little effect that I sometimes feel I am talking only to myself. But I'm not going to quit because this is an important and solvable problem."

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