How Can I Perform Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) if I Have Limited Mobility?

How Can I Perform Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) if I Have Limited Mobility?

Please explore our website for resources in regard to education, advocacy, and work. For assistance with the ADA, contact the Americans with Disabilities Act Technical Assistance Centers. Learning about the ADA Amendments Act of 2008 will help you to understand how the ADAAA broadens coverage for many individuals.

For protection, advocacy, and legal assistance, contact your state National Disability Rights Network. Be sure to click on your state so that you get relevant and timely information.

Consider the following activities:

  • If you are a nursing student, be sure to work with your Disability Services Office where you already have documented your disability. They can advocate for you with nursing faculty.
  • Find out if the nursing program is willing to accept your theoretical knowledge of the skill and a learning laboratory demonstration of your competence, in lieu of actually carrying out the skill in the clinical setting? If not, you can do CPR standing beside a bed or stretcher if your knees are the issue. If you use a wheelchair, you have several options. You can get out of your chair onto the floor with the patient and do CPR there or you can lower the bed or stretcher to reach the patient.
  • You also can use an Ambu-Bag, which helps with the assist breaths via a mask with an attached bag to inflate the patient’s lungs. Current guidelines emphasize chest compressions, which can be done on the floor.
  • See how one nursing student adapted to situations like this in the film entitled Open the Door, Get ‘Em a Locker. Many nurses never perform CPR; most practicing nurses who find CPR difficult simply find a job that does not require this skill.




Disclaimer: The National Organization of Nurses with Disabilities (NOND) does not offer legal advice but NOND does offer resources to help you understand your rights, protections, and responsibilities within various Disability Rights Laws.

Can I Be a Nurse if I Have Intermittent Conditions?

Can I Be a Nurse if I Have Intermittent Conditions?

Absolutely, you can be a nurse if you have a chronic, intermittent health condition.

If you have an episodic (intermittent) condition such as epilepsy, migraines, or fibromyalgia, you would be considered to have a disability if any of your major life activities are impaired when the condition is in its active state. When seeking ADA protection, remember that there must be a link between the disability or limitations and the task for which you need help.

Please explore our website for resources in regard to education, advocacy, and work. For assistance with the ADA, contact the Americans with Disabilities Act Technical Assistance Centers. Learning about the ADA Amendments Act of 2008 will help you to understand how the ADAAA broadens coverage for many individuals.

To request accommodations under the ADA, you will need to disclose your condition and provide documentation from your health care provider. Also, contact your local
contact your local Center for Independent Living for ideas about accommodations from people who have had similar issues.

If your chronic condition affects a major life activity such as seeing, hearing, walking, sleeping, etc., or a major bodily function such as those of the immune system, normal cell growth, or endocrine system, etc., you are covered under the ADA. Latex allergies also come under this portion of the ADA and its amendments.

 


Disclaimer: The National Organization of Nurses with Disabilities (NOND) does not offer legal advice but NOND does offer resources to help you understand your rights, protections, and responsibilities within various Disability Rights Laws.

Can I Be a Nurse if I Have a Chronic Condition that Affects My Life Activities?

Can I Be a Nurse if I Have a Chronic Condition that Affects My Life Activities?

  1. Please explore our website for resources in regard to education, advocacy, and work. For assistance with the ADA, contact the Americans with Disabilities Act Technical Assistance Centers. Learning about the ADA Amendments Act of 2008 will help you to understand how the ADAAA broadens coverage for many individuals.
  2. For protection, advocacy, and legal assistance, contact your state National Disability Rights Network. Be sure to click on your state so that you get relevant and timely information. Also check out your rights under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.
  3. For connections with people with disabilities in your community, contact your local Center for Independent Living.
  4. Information about how to get a job, contact State Vocational Rehabilitation Program or the Job Accommodation Network.


If your chronic condition affects a major life activity such as seeing, hearing, walking, sleeping, etc., or a major bodily function such as those of the immune system, normal cell growth, or endocrine system, etc., you are covered under the ADA. Latex allergies also come under this portion of the ADA and its amendments.


Disclaimer: The National Organization of Nurses with Disabilities (NOND) does not offer legal advice but NOND does offer resources to help you understand your rights, protections, and responsibilities within various Disability Rights Laws.

How Can I Master Clinical Skills if I Have Impaired Vision?

How Can I Master Clinical Skills if I Have Impaired Vision?

Please explore our website for resources in regard to education, advocacy, and work. You may already know about national organizations providing assistance for people with impaired vision nfb.org/state-and-local-organizations and “Shedding Light on Nurses with Vision Loss.”

The ADA Amendments specify that mitigating measures or devices such as special eye wear cannot be considered in determining whether a person has an impairment that substantially limits a major life activity (the criterion for protection under the ADA). This means that your bioptics (described below) or other special adaptations that help you function well do not disqualify you for protection under the ADA. In addition, here are some specific suggestions from our Board members about how you might adapt to the clinical setting:

  • Use a clip-on magnifier for hands-free magnification or hand magnifiers.
  • Use lenses such as those used by surgeons or a bioptic, which work like binoculars. You can zoom in or out until you can see the object. A specialist in low vision optometry can prescribe these special binocular glasses.
  • Review different low vision websites for instruments to test out in the learning laboratory with your instructor. You may need different items for different tasks; make sure you can return the ones that do not work for you.
  • Use a headband light. Extra light is extremely important in accomplishing clinical tasks; fluorescent lights are problematic for people with low vision.
  • Use a talking blood pressure device and talking thermometer.
  • For charting on paper: A hand-held magnification device from Telesensory utilizes a computer screen where the size of the object/print can be enlarged.
  • For computer charting: Screen magnifiers (programs added to agency mainframes or a pen drive that can be taken from computer to computer) work wonders for anyone with low vision. Zoomtext is one of the available assistive technology software programs but there are many companies that sell these products.
  • For catheterizing: A headband light can help you view the area for catheter insertion a little better. Get closer than other nurses to the patient, while making sure to maintain the sterile field. Extra light and closer proximity to the patient are the keys to this procedure. 
  • For tracheotomy care: Extra light and magnification glasses or clip-ons will help. With gloved hands, place one index finger alongside the tracheotomy so that you can feel the opening. Use that finger as a guide to insert the suction tube into the trach. Because you will get closer than other nurses (while still maintaining your sterile field), you may want to wear a mask. This may take a little practice but it works.
  • For IV medication administration: Again, the key is getting close and having adequate light. You can use magnifier glasses to make the very small print larger and a headband light to view the small connections for the tubing. 


Other resources for you include the following:




Disclaimer: The National Organization of Nurses with Disabilities (NOND) does not offer legal advice but NOND does offer resources to help you understand your rights, protections, and responsibilities within various Disability Rights Laws.

What Jobs in Nursing Can I do if I Have Physical Limitations?

What Jobs in Nursing Can I do if I Have Physical Limitations?

Please explore our website for resources in regard to education, advocacy, and work.

For information about how to get a job or get through school, contact your State Vocational Rehabilitation Program. and Job Accommodation Network. There are more and more nursing jobs for people with physical limitations. Here are some suggestions:

  • Legal consultation (training is available on-line)
  • Lactation consultant
  • Occupational health
  • Psychiatric or mental health nursing
  • Case management
  • Triage at a home care agency
  • Quality assurance reviews
  • Chart reviews for a nursing home
  • Drug reviews or physical exams for insurance companies
  • On-line teaching for masters or doctorally-prepared nursing faculty
  • Protocol reviews for research projects
  • If you want part-time, interview only for part time or find another nurse who can share the job with you.
  • While you are looking for a job:
  • Do not let your license lapse. You cannot practice without a renewal, which generally involves taking a refresher course requiring clinical hours.
  • Keep up with your continuing education credits (CEUs) if required by your State Board of Nursing.
  • Think about going on for an advanced degree so that you may teach part time at a community college or in a CNA course.


For protection, advocacy, and legal assistance, contact your state National Disability Rights Network. Be sure to click on your state so that you get relevant and timely information. For assistance with the ADA, contact the Americans with Disabilities Act Technical Assistance Centers. Learning about the ADA Amendments Act of 2008 will help you to understand how the ADAAA broadens coverage for many individuals.



Disclaimer: The National Organization of Nurses with Disabilities (NOND) does not offer legal advice but NOND does offer resources to help you understand your rights, protections, and responsibilities within various Disability Rights Laws.

If my school allows me to repeat an exam because I did not receive adequate accommodations for a learning disability, does this set a precedent so that all other students must get the same consideration?

If my school allows me to repeat an exam because I did not receive adequate accommodations for a learning disability, does this set a precedent so that all other students must get the same consideration?

Explore our website for resources in regard to education, advocacy, and work.

For protection, advocacy, and legal assistance, contact your state National Disability Rights Network. Be sure to click on your state so that you get relevant and timely information. For assistance with the ADA, contact the Americans with Disabilities Act Technical Assistance Centers. Learning about the ADA Amendments Act of 2008 will help you to understand how the ADAAA broadens coverage for many individuals. Yes, the ADA Amendments cover major life activities that can be limited by learning disabilities (for example, learning and concentrating) and provide protection for you.

Support and Activism
For connections with people with disabilities in your community, contact your local
Center for Independent Living. Also, contact your local adapt organization to learn about activism.

Under the ADA, qualified students with disabilities are dealt with on individual basis. If an appropriate accommodation is for you to retake an exam, that does not set a precedent or mean that the option has to be offered to all other students.

If there are no clear procedures for requesting accommodations, you have grounds to complain to the school administration and to the Office for Civil rights (OCR), if you so choose. If there are clearly stated procedures for requesting services and you followed them, but were not given appropriate support, then you can appeal that decision both internally and externally, again, through the Office for Civil rights (OCR).

If you did not follow the stated procedures, then you are on less solid ground. Even so, if you repeatedly asked for help from your faculty for a learning disability, they should have referred you back to the Disability Services office at your campus to for support and formal accommodations.



Disclaimer: The National Organization of Nurses with Disabilities (NOND) does not offer legal advice but NOND does offer resources to help you understand your rights, protections, and responsibilities within various Disability Rights Laws.

Can I Be a Nurse if I Have a Learning Disability?

Can I Be a Nurse if I Have a Learning Disability?

Please explore our website for resources in regard to education, advocacy, and work. For assistance with the ADA, contact the Americans with Disabilities Act Technical Assistance Centers. Learning about the ADA Amendments Act of 2008 will help you to understand how the ADAAA broadens coverage for many individuals.

For protection, advocacy, and legal assistance, contact your state National Disability Rights Network. Be sure to click on your state so that you get relevant and timely information. Also check out your rights under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.

For connections with people with disabilities in your community, contact your local Center for Independent Living.

Information about how to get a job, contact State Vocational Rehabilitation Program or the Job Accommodation Network.

 


Disclaimer: The National Organization of Nurses with Disabilities (NOND) does not offer legal advice but NOND does offer resources to help you understand your rights, protections, and responsibilities within various Disability Rights Laws.

What Should I Do if Have a Disability that May Prevent Me from Becoming a CNA but a Nursing Program Requires that I Earn that Certification Before I Can Enter their Program?

What Should I Do if Have a Disability that May Prevent Me from Becoming a CNA but a Nursing Program Requires that I Earn that Certification Before I Can Enter their Program?

Please explore our website for resources in regard to education, advocacy, and work.

For assistance with the ADA, contact the Americans with Disabilities Act Technical Assistance Centers, then meet with the program coordinator and ask questions. For example, do you actually have to be certified as a nursing assistant or do you just have to complete the classroom portion of the course with a passing grade? If there are areas that you can’t physically complete, can you verbally instruct someone else on how to complete the task? You might also ask for a waiver for the CNA portion. Make sure to contact your State Board of Nursing which regulates CNA programs to see how they might work with you to accomplish your goals. Finally, find a strong advocate, someone who can speak well to disability law, and remember that not all nursing programs are restrictive in this way – look around for another program which may be a better fit.

Also, learning about the ADA Amendments Act of 2008 will help you to understand how the ADAAA broadens coverage for many individuals.



Disclaimer: The National Organization of Nurses with Disabilities (NOND) does not offer legal advice but NOND does offer resources to help you understand your rights, protections, and responsibilities within various Disability Rights Laws.

If I Have a Disability, Can I Be a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA)?

If I Have a Disability, Can I Be a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA)?

Please explore our website for resources in regard to education, advocacy, and work. First, it depends on whether you are qualified and on your disability. For example, if you need to take a blood pressure but can’t hear it, you can achieve the same goal using an automated machine. If you need to read an information sheet regarding personal care for a patient but have vision impairment, the sheet could be provided in larger print. The CNA curriculum also requires that students be able to demonstrate lifting and positioning, which could be addressed in this same way. If you have restrictions on your ability to lift, you could be held accountable for verbalizing the knowledge underlying that task and faculty could help you identify other options, such as seeking physical assistance or task-trading with a peer.

Coursework and certification are considered separate entities. You should contact your State Board of Nursing to determine what accommodations are allowed on the certification exam at the completion of your program.

On a practical note, you need to remember that education and employment are covered by different rules. People with disabilities are adept at many things (with or without adaptations and accommodations) that others might not think they could do. That said, think about the daily work of the CNA. It is physically and emotionally demanding, and employers may be unwilling to accommodate such things as inability to lift patients, an integral and substantial part of the CNA role that occurs many times each day.



Disclaimer: The National Organization of Nurses with Disabilities (NOND) does not offer legal advice but NOND does offer resources to help you understand your rights, protections, and responsibilities within various Disability Rights Laws.

What Happens if I Am Asked to Sign a Document Stating that I Have No Disabilities?

What Happens if I Am Asked to Sign a Document Stating that I Have No Disabilities?

Please explore our website for resources in regard to education, advocacy, and work. For assistance with the ADA, contact the Americans with Disabilities Act Technical Assistance Centers. Learning about the ADA Amendments Act of 2008 will help you to understand how the ADAAA broadens coverage for many individuals.

For protection, advocacy, and legal assistance, contact your state National Disability Rights Network. Be sure to click on your state so that you get relevant and timely information. Also check out your rights under Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.

For connections with people with disabilities in your community, contact your local Center for Independent Living.

Information about how to get a job, contact State Vocational Rehabilitation Program or the Job Accommodation Network.


Disclaimer: The National Organization of Nurses with Disabilities (NOND) does not offer legal advice but NOND does offer resources to help you understand your rights, protections, and responsibilities within various Disability Rights Laws.