Home >  News >  February, 2012

Why You Should Cherish Your Older OR Nurses

Besides grooming the next generation of surgical nurses, their experience and know-how make them invaluable assets.

Published: February 22, 2012

Ann Doshi, RN, has spent 40 years of her working life in the OR and the 62-year-old has no intention of retiring anytime soon. That's good, because her employer hopes she doesn't.

Morristown Medical Center in New Jersey is part of Atlantic Health System, which AARP recently named the 7th best employer in America for workers over 50 years old. Lesley Meyer, Atlantic's human resources manager, told CNNMoney that the health system values older employees because of their "experience, knowledge and skills."

Ms. Doshi, who currently trains nursing and medical students, doesn't necessarily disagree with the notion that older nurses have a tendency to eat their young, but believes younger nurses are realizing their more seasoned colleagues have a lot to offer. "We have the knowledge, and we have the chance to share it," says Ms. Doshi. "That's what I like to do."

CNNMoney's full video report says the belief that older workers are less productive is simply a myth. Absenteeism and turnover actually decline in older populations, while job performance, work knowledge and interpersonal skills improve, says Peter Cappelli, management professor at the Wharton School of Business in Philadelphia, Pa.

The number of workers who are 55 years or older has increased from 18.7 million in 2000 to 30.9 million in 2011, according to the report, an increase that could be attributed to more older workers believing they can't afford to retire.

Money, however, is not what drives Ms. Doshi. "I really love my work," she says. "I want to do this and I don't want to stop."

Daniel Cook


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