April 9, 2021

How to influence nurse leaders

Clear, purposeful communication is what separates a good but frustrated nurse from a great and fulfilled nurse. If you’re feeling frustrated, confused, or defeated with leadership or management, this resource is for you. These communication techniques will instill confidence in any nurse — whether new to the bedside or a seasoned veteran. There’s never been a more important time to communicate your needs and advocate for positive change. It's time to push for better outcomes and a healthier work environment. Here's how you can get started. Read more

New guidelines for common antibiotics? —

Recent studies may provide a breakthrough in what we know as the best practices around prescribing antibiotics. An over-reliance on antimicrobial use in the United States is a major healthcare issue, especially as overuse may contribute to antibiotic resistance. To be exact, overuse entails the reliance on antibiotics for unnecessarily long durations in cases of common infections, such as COPD exacerbation, CAP, UTIs, and cellulitis. The verdict? In most cases, antibiotics need only be administered for 3-5 days depending on severity. This contrasts with the average antibiotic cycle of 5–14 days. For specific suggestions regarding the above infections, keep reading. Read more

Single shot improves child's vision for a year —

A new study has just revealed that an experimental RNA therapy may be able to partially cure blindness, at least temporarily. The study focused on the use of antisense oligonucleotide (AON) sepofarsen for patients with a type of congenital blindness. The study monitored 11 patients, 10 of whom received the experimental therapy once every three months for about a year. All ten patients responded with signs of increased vision for the duration of the trial period. The eleventh patient was only given one shot but still reported an improvement in visual acuity, increased visual fields, and improved night vision. While the benefits peaked at two months, they seemed to also partially remain for the months that followed. While still in its early stages, this form of RNA therapy could provide incredible results after further testing. Read more

What does an Informatics Nurse do?—

Nursing Informatics incorporates computer science (computers and their processes), cognitive science (how the brain and nervous system interpret information), information science (collecting, storage, retrieval, and use of data), and nursing science (nursing theory and practice development) into once career that improves clinical efficiency while also focusing on patient safety and outcomes. We asked an experienced Nurse Informaticist about her experience. Check it out! Read more

Coronavirus Updates

Is another COVID-19 surge coming to the United States? —

After about two months of steep declines in COVID-19 cases nationwide, infection rates are slowly rising again; however, they don't seem to be doing so at the same rate in each state. While at least 33 states are seeing rising cases—some by more than 50%—others are seeing a plateau or, in fact, a minor decrease. Michigan, in particular, is showing an increase as high as 125% in cases. Hospitalizations have similarly risen in more than 12 states over the past seven days. Melissa Nolan, professor of epidemiology at the University of South Carolina, shared that the current increase could be followed by another jump over the summer: "Our models are suggesting June as another peak, approximately a quarter the size of last summer's." The culprit? Nolan believes this to be the result of adults and children who remain unvaccinated (at this point, just under 20% of the U.S. population has been vaccinated). Moving forward, what we see will really depend on how quickly people are able to get vaccinated as well as how effectively we hold onto infection control safety measures. Read more

How long will COVID-19 vaccine immunity last? —

The most recent research following the COVID-19 vaccine shows that mRNA COVID-19 vaccines provide immunity for at least six months. While it is likely they will persist longer than that, we simply don't know yet since the vaccines are still so new — the earliest cohorts to receive the vaccine are just barely crossing the six-month mark themselves. Dr. Susan Bailey, an allergist, immunologist, and president of the American Medical Association, stated, “These people [in the study] have had the vaccine the longest, and it tells us it lasts at least 6 months [...] But it’s definitely longer than that — it’s not just going to drop off after 6 months." Experts say that more research must be done to understand whether people will need regular booster shots for COVID-19. We don't yet know if the vaccine will last a lifetime—as is the case with measles, mumps, and rubella vaccines—or a year, like the seasonal flu. What we do know is that thanks to new mRNA vaccine technology, it won't be difficult to produce boosters if need be. Read more

President Biden announces April 19 vaccine goal —

This week, President Biden announced the goal to have all United States adults eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccine by April 19. Prior to this statement, he had shared that all adults would be eligible by May 1. Moving this date up is a positive step in the right direction, but now it's just a matter of whether the country can pull it off. Health experts expect a mad dash by adults everywhere once eligibility is officially announced, but they're not too concerned since additional vaccine supplies are on the way, and the U.S. hit a single-day vaccination high on Saturday with 4.1 million vaccines administered. Jason L. Schwartz, assistant professor of health policy at Yale University, stated that "[Soon,] we’re going to shift to a very different phase in the vaccine rollout where we will have plenty of doses available." Perhaps "normal life" is closer than we thought. Read more

Good news for pregnant women and the COVID-19 vaccine —

Recent data suggests that the COVID-19 vaccine is safe for women who are pregnant (as well as their unborn babies). As the gap in data for pregnant women and the vaccine slowly shrinks, current findings are reassuring. At a press briefing earlier this week, Dr. Anthony Fauci stated that, "Things look very good for the association between vaccination and protecting pregnant women from adverse outcomes from themselves and their fetus." Among the data were the exciting findings that pregnant women vaccinated against COVID-19 seem able to share, or pass down, immunity to their newborns through both the placenta and breast milk. This bodes very well for those expecting, and it provides compelling evidence that can be used in discussions with pregnant patients regarding whether to get the vaccine. Read more

Upcoming Events

4/12, 3pm PDT: Bedside to Business - One Nurse's Journey to Entrepreneurship —

Join us on April 12 at 3pm PDT on Instagram Live as Community Ambassador Andrea Sommer, RN, chats with Zach Smith, BSN-RN, a former bedside nurse turned nurse entrepreneur. Since leaving the bedside, Zach helped start, grow, and eventually sell a company called NurseGrid and has since helped launch and market BALA Footwear, which creates premium shoes for nurses. During this chat, Zach will talk about nurses' business potential and how they can apply their education in different ways. Don't miss it! Follow us on Instagram

4/14, 3pm PDT: How To Find Your Perfect Nursing Shoe - Fit and Function —

Do you think about your feet or shoes during your shifts? Do you have difficulty finding the right fitting shoes for work? A nurse's shoes can make or break a shift. Join Caprice Neely, Co-Founder and designer of BALA, and Stephanie Taylor, Manager of Product Fit & Operations, for this one-hour chat highlighting fit, key features, and benefits of footwear that will enable you to find the best shoe for your 12-hour shifts and beyond. All event attendees will receive a special BALA discount code, and we'll be giving away some amazing goodies during the event. All nurses are invited to this event, just make sure you RSVP!

Clockin' Out ✌️

"My therapist told me 'Just because you have free time doesn't mean you are available.' I know someone else needs to hear that message today." - Dr. Jamele Watkins (@jamwatk)