advertise with us find a job post your topic join the community log in
Reality Unscripted
Reality RN?: Your Story Ideas for "Nurse Jackie"

Nurse Jackie.

Love her or hate her, she certainly has generated some strong comments from our readers.  The general consensus was that the TV show, which depicts the life of a nurse, is unrealistic.  Some find it offensive, some find it funny.

We could argue the rights and wrongs of this particular show for days, but here's what I would like to know.  How would a good television drama or comedy portray a nurse?  What are accurate stereotypes of nurses? What storylines would be interesting enough to keep an audience entertained for 13 episodes a year but also be realistic?

Give us your ideas.  Maybe we could name the show Reality RN :)

Read more Reality Unscripted articles

9 Responses to “Reality RN?: Your Story Ideas for “Nurse Jackie””

  1. rhon91 Says:

    I thought the show was hilarious and Im so glad its Edie playing her. I was disappointed that she had a drug problem though. I knew that would upset many nurses. So it will be interesting to see where they take that and what the overall message is. Reality is, though, there are some nurses with a drug problem. Its not as if that doesnt exist. The show wouldve been just as funny without the drug thing but am curious where thats gonna go.

    A storyline that would be good is the patient who comes in in pain and is allergic to everything but Dilaudid IV. We all know the type. Or the drug abuser with an external pacemaker who is getting edgier and edgier staring at the door he thinks he can escape through. Nurse has to prove what can happen if he tries that by turning his rate down on the pacemaker and hearing the beeping go lower and lower and lower and pt says ‘turn that s**t back up’ and makes himself a little more comfortable because now he knows.. he’s gotta stay.

  2. Matt D Says:

    How about nurse Jackie gets caught diverting when they audit the new “pyxis” medication machine and then loses her job, goes to rehab, is financially devastated and has to join the state Nurses Addictions Program and be treated like a leper for 5 years by potential employers.
    Oh wait, that’s my story, sorry.
    How about nurse Jackie approaches the EAP at work about a “friend” with an addiction problem and finds out that there really is no help from the employer; they try to trick her into admitting the “friend” is her because their “zero tolerance” policy would allow them to fire her and save the hospital any potential embarrassment.
    Meanwhile back at the ER patients are stacking up in the hallways because of a “never turn away business” policy that has accepted far more patients then the hospital is capable of caring for so they are left in the ER to fend for themselves. (The Darwinian Approach)

  3. Leslie K. Machuzak Says:

    Excellent comment Matt….that was my story too. I love how nurses like to pretend like there isn’t drug and alcohol abuse within the profession not only within the nursing profession but the medical profession as a whole. It happens alot. I think nurse Jackie is an excellent example of what has and is happening in medicine today. The sad part is that nurse eat their own….it’s disappointing. It would be better to help nurses find recovery and either return to nursing or find another profession. There are many, many jobs for nurses who cannot be around drugs but have taken responsibility, gotten clean, stayed sober and earned the right to return to nursing…..and then did that. We are not nuns, we are people. Maybe if we got honest we could help our patience better.

  4. Sylvia Williams Says:

    Most needed story idea for Nurse Jackie. This is a reality. LATEX ALLERGY is INCREASING THE NURSING SHORTAGE. As a nurse with a latex allergy, I speak to nurses that stop the profession they loved or feel called to do because of a latex allergy. If latex gloves are not removed from all hospitals and healthcare settings we will risk more people becoming latex allergic and leaving the profession.I am an advocate for taking latex out of not only hospitals but restaurants as it poses a health threat also in food service. Thank you for considering this as a story topic.
    Sylvia Williams
    Destin Florida

  5. gorete Says:

    The IV push drugs for patient is good….Pt’s now come in the door looking for the IV Push Dilaudid and refuse to take pills… and our MD’s started this …AMERICA you have a drug problem but is not on the street go to your MD he will give you good drugs and it is legal….
    I had a friend that had a procesure done they give her dilaudid she is now suffering from other complications and going thru Rehab….Who did this the MD’s…I have add several patients tell me I can’t take anything else but dilaudid IV my doctor told me to take it.
    WE have a problem.

  6. Leslie K. Machuzak Says:

    Yes, we do…….Physicians are the least educated about narcotics/benzos, ect and often do not warn the patients of what long term use can do to them. They just continue prescribing large quantities of drugs because they have been programed, I’m sorry, taught that if a patients in pain you give them pain meds. I work with a bunch of ortho surgeons who push pills like it’s candy and I believe it’s lack of knowledge. I had a patient come into the office who had been on percocet for a knee injury for several weeks, stopped her narcotics and came to the office thinking she was losing her mind. She had absolutely no idea what was happening to her only to find out she was in serious narcotic withdrawl and had no idea. The physician’s response to this was just stop taking them….it will pass. Pharmacutical drugs are becoming the up and coming enemey of the people and they don’t even know it. It’s becoming a serious epidemic that id rationalized because so many can say that their doctor prescribed it……well, thats fast not becoming a good reason.

  7. Paula Pharis Says:

    Some of the comments regarding doctors prescribing pain meds like they are candy are mostly true, but we forget that some patients are truly in pain and we find doctors and nurses who think every patient is asking for pain meds because they are junkies. I recently took my mother to the ER with a fx patella. She also is a fibromyalgia patient who detests taking pain meds, but knows what helps her and what doesn’t. The PA and Er doc treated her as if she was a pain med junkie because she asked for a specific pain med. I had to get “ugly” with the staff to get her the meds she requested. Maybe misperception of patients could be a story line.

  8. R. A. Says:

    I’ve been an ER Nurse for 28 years and developed anaphylactic reactions to latex. My last reaction came on in 3-4 seconds during surgery to replace my PICC. Reality would be a show depicting the elation of a woman who is finally living her dream. Reality would be getting into Flight-For-Life like she has always wanted, and flying on that bird to save lives. Reality would be her co-workers pulling her back from the edge of death after her first anaphylactic reaction that came on without warning. Reality would be realizing half of her co-workers being too ignorant to understand she could have died. Reality would be those same nurses having the unmitigated gall to say “It’ just cornstarch! Who’s allergic to cornstarch?!” Reality would be having an anaphylactic reaction in a restaurant, AFTER she has asked if they use latex gloves and being told, “No.” Reality is having to make the decision to walk away from the only career I’ve ever wanted in my life or die. Reality is being completely homebound out of fear for my life. There are over 40,000 everyday items that contain latex. Reality is meds every three hours without fail and always having epi within reach. This is my reality.

  9. R.A. Says:

    By the way, reality is the fact this did not have to happen. As stated above, there are over 40,000 items in everyday use that contain some component of latex. There is no cure for this occupational disease; therefore, the only thing an individual who has latex allergy/anaphylaxis is to avoid those 40,000 items! No problem, right? Give it a go on your next day off. Go to the store and find a pen with no rubber grip. Buy your son a football with no “texture” in the leather. When you visit your hair dresser (yeah, I’m old, that’s what we call them), look around at how many boxes of latex gloves are out in the open. That’s all it takes for me! I don’t have to touch them! If they are there, it’s in the air, and epi is going in my leg while we wait for the rig to arrive. It should have been like it was supposed to be, but it isn’t, and there ain’t a thing a can do about it except hold on for dear life (literally) every time another 50 ft. wave hits. I’ll ride this out and be as positive as I can, ’cause that’s the way I was raised.
    This is the time in life when I should have been able to kick back a little, having become financially secure, visiting my children and their children, finally having that brand new Tacoma, vacations (being able to travel without worrying about latex dust, where it is and what’s been touched), and the whole nine yards. Instead, I’m accounting for every single penny. I’m having nightmares of the next anaphylactic reaction, praying there are people around me who know what to do and are able to do it quickly and accurately. There are nights I go to bed wondering if I will see morning. There is no drama here, this is my life.
    For the nurses who were too ignorant (lacking the self-discipline to educate themselves or to simply listen), I would not wish this on them or anyone else.
    Be safe Nurses! If you do not have a latex allergy, go to nitrile gloves. If we can stop the allergy before it ever strikes, before any allergens to latex are developed, thereby preventing the IgE-mediated reaction and sensitivity to latex, why aren’t we doing it?! Try and get your hospital to go latex free. If Johns Hopkins can go totally latex free, so can everyone else. Yes, there are costs involved and it will increase the operating costs; however, if a little more money now saves a whole lot more in the future, NOT TO MENTION LIVES AND CAREERS, isn’t that worth it? Weigh the costs of going latex free now vs disability payments and workman’s comp in the future. Aren’t we worth it? Don’t we deserve it? We give you our blood, sweat, and tears; don’t we deserve the same loyalty from our employers?

Leave a Reply

search realityrn

sign up for weekly cartoons, tips, and blog posts
first name
last name

Register to win a pair of RX Medical Silver Fox Crocs

Nursing Jobs