I was ready to hand in my name tag today.
It started out pretty normal.....6 am my first get-up is an 83-year-old lady who has been going downhill for the past few weeks. She can no longer walk and is getting dangerous to transfer because her legs buckle so easily. She weighs about 180 lb. The routine is to get her toileted, dressed, do her oral care, and place her tray full of face cream and make-up in front of her so she can do that herself before breakfast as she waits in her wheelchair. Her wheelchair is alarmed with an RN sensor on her seat and a 'tabs' alarm attached to her blouse so she won't try to get up unassisted. When I left her room at 6:40 am to take care of my other residents, I had her RN sensor on but not the tabs, which I managed to forget. 7:10 am I go back to her room to help her finish putting on her makeup and take her to the dining area for breakfast. She is in the middle of the floor lying on her side, her eyes blank. She seemed happy as a clam and not even aware that she'd just fallen. Her chair alarm hadn't gone off to alert us to her trying to stand ( apparently the alarm was working properly but the sensor she was sitting wasn't working). The worst part was I realized that I'd forgotten to put her tabs alarm on -- at least if she'd had that on we would have heard her trying to get up even without the chair sensor going off. As it was we didn't even know how long she'd been lying there.
My co-workers were kind and reassuring, but I'm being pretty merciless on myself. I'm not brand new at this and I'm not dumb....but to forget something that basic is inexcusable. I was close to tears the rest of the day I was so mortified. The lady wasn't hurt other than a big bump on her head, and later on that day she seemed to have no recollection that anything had happened because she tried to do it again.
This makes me want to quit so badly, however I cannot afford to unless I have another job to go to. It scares me how easily this happened, how I could be so mindless. I've caught other aides forgetting to put alarms on from time to time as well as myself, but so far we caught it before anyone fell. I'm going to have a hard time forgiving myself, even though this lady's daughter was also very kind and understanding to me about it. I was afraid she'd 'fire' me from taking care of her daughter again. I'll just have to work this out of my system.
Feb 23, '11
Everybody makes mistakes. I bet you will be super careful about checking now, which is a GOOD thing!
Last edit by JDZ344 on May 14, '14