Outpatient Surgery Magazine - Subscribers

Not the Retiring Type - January 2015 - Outpatient Surgery Magazine

Outpatient Surgery Magazine, providing current information on Surgical Services, Surgical Facility Administration, Outpatient Surgery News and Trends, OR Excellence and more.

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Page 9 of 148

1 0 Graying of the Surgical Workforce Why are so many OR nurses and managers delaying their retirement? At 70, Joy Schmuckal, LPN, CST, the surgical scrub nurse on our cover, is still working 5 days a week in the OR — more so because she has to than because she wants to. "People look at me and say, 'My God, she's still working.' I need to. I want to," she says. "It sounds wonderful to say 'I love my job,' but we all need a paycheck. There's just not enough money to comfortably retire." If Ms. Schmuckal could comfortably retire tomorrow, yeah, she probably would, she says. "When I quit working, I have other things on my plate, other things I want to do yet." Ms. Schmuckal hopes to pad her nest egg by putting in 2 more part-time years at the Northwest Michigan Surgery Center in Traverse City, Mich., before she finally gets around to doing more of what she loves, full-time: European vacations, wilderness backpacking, tent camping with her 2 grandchildren and volunteering at a national park. But these things cost money. Lots of it. "The lifestyle I like to live is one that scares me with the economy," says Ms. Schmuckal, divorced since 1984. "The longer I can work now, the more I can build for my retirement and pad what funds are already there. That will add to my security." Ms. Schmuckal is 70, but looks much younger, as trim and as fit today as she was in her 20s and fully able to withstand the rigors of OR nursing. Besides the support hose and the bifocals, there's nothing senior citizen about her. "It's all in how you carry yourself," she says. "Don't walk like an old person, even if you have aches or pains. Keep your shoulders back and your head up." Defying old age and delaying retirement makes her the perfect sym-

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