NEW YORK NURSE: March/April 2012
by Alison Munday
Leslie Neal-Boylan, PhD, RN, Professor of Nursing at Southern Connecticut State University, is conducting a study of registered nurses with permanent physical and/or sensory disabilities. The study’s purpose is to explore how closely nurse job descriptions match the actual expectations of the job. This study is part of an ongoing program of research regarding the work life of nurses with disabilities. The study involves one interview of approximately one hour. If interested, please contact Dr. Neal-Boylan for further information at 203-392-6480 or nealboylanL1@southernct.edu.
The latest data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics concerning union membership in New York and New Jersey reveals that in 2011, union members accounted for 24.1 percent of wage and salary workers in New York and 16.1 in New Jersey. New York’s membership rate was almost unchanged from the previous year, but New Jersey’s rate dropped 1.0 percentage point. Both states reflected their lowest union membership rates since 1989, when the recording began. Conversely, despite the downward spike, both states boasted union membership rates well-above the national figure of 11.8 percent. In 2011, New York’s union membership rate was the highest in all 50 states, with 1,906,000 union members, followed by Alaska second, and Hawaii, third. New Jersey ranked in eleventh position. For fifteen of the past seventeen years, New York has demonstrated the highest union membership rate nationally.
According to a research recently published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the prescribing of antidepressants has increased by nearly 400% since 1988, with more than 1 in 10 Americans over 12 now taking an antidepressant. However, two-thirds of individuals with severe symptoms of depression are not taking antidepressants at all. Based on the responses of 12,000 people participating in a national health survey between 2005 - 2008, the research suggests that depression is still consistently undertreated. The findings revealed that women were overall 2.5 times more likely to take antidepressants than men, and that depression most frequently affects people between the ages of 45 and 64. Nearly 23% of women between 40 and 59 took antidepressants during the three year period. One of the more concerning findings is the length of time people are using them. About 60% took medication for two years or longer, and 14% for more than a decade. In terms of racial trends, the study found that while blacks and Hispanics are more likely to be depressed than whites, the data showed 14% of whites took antidepressants, compared to just 4% of blacks and 3% of Hispanics. While depression is much more common among the poor and unemployed, prescribing rates by income showed no difference.