The nurse and patient's family yelled at me. I feel horrible. - page 3
by mamacita2, ASN, RN | 3,988 Views | 25 Comments
I'm a nursing assistant in the float pool. I get floated to pretty much everywhere. However, I enjoy it. I do my job and leave. I always get compliments each floor I go to because I work hard. I don't take the morning breaks... Read More
- 5May 3, '13 by psu_213, BSN, RNFrom what it sounds like, you basically did nothing wrong--so have something to eat and then sleep easy. You took the temp, documented it, and told the nurse about it. I am willing to give them leeway because their child is sick, but the family sounds like they had an attitude and you could not win.
Some thoughts on the situation:
1. The nurse was totally wrong to sell you out like that, and should never have asked you to go back into the room when it was clear there was tension between you and the family. The nurse's behavior made this situation a lot worse for you and that is truly unfortunate.
2. The temperature should not be taken with the family's thermometer (or any other VS taken with non-hospital equipment). The hospital makes sure all equipment is correctly calibrated and that quality control checks are done a regular intervals. Who knows how old the family thermometer is. What is the quality of the family's equipment? You would not treat a blood pressure that was obtained from a machine/cuff/manometer that had not been calibrated and/or kept in good working order. The nurse needs to step up, defend you, and she needs to politely, but firmly tell that family they she cannot chart nor treat the family's readings for temperature.
3. This is my one criticism for you (and why I used the word "basically" earlier). You cannot go back to work and look up patient information "just in case" or "just to see how their doing." This is a privacy violation and you leave an "electronic" trail each time you go into the chart. Inquiring minds may notice that you were in the chart on a day when you were not even scheduled to work. It may not turn into anything, but looking in the chart of patient for whom you are not caring is a bad habit that may cause trouble in the future.
- 0May 3, '13 by mamacita2Thank you for your feedback and advice. The thermometer that was given to the parents are the ones the hospital supplies, not the ones that the parents brought from home. I just felt bad because my work ethic was questioned and now I'm second guessing myself. Part of the reason is because I have low confidence.
- 1May 3, '13 by blondy2061h, MSN, RNI hate to add insult to injury. I don't think you did anything wrong with the temp. Axillary temperatures are not that accurate and can have a huge range depending on positioning and such. However, it is a HIPAA violation for you to be looking at patient information you don't need to do to provide care, which definitely includes looking up a chart on your day off of a patient you cared for several days ago on a floor you don't even work on regularly. Probably nothing will come from it, but I'd advise you against doing it again.
If this is bothering you to the point that you're losing sleep over it, you may want to consider seeking professional help.
- 2May 3, '13 by KaLynRNI agree with above posters, offering encouragement. I also wanted to mention it is a HIPPA violation to look up pt charts the next day if you are not caring for pt, as the above poster mentioned.
This is just FYI:
1) tylenol and fever reducers only reduce fever by 1-2 degrees, so that's why you will see a temp go up and down when being medicated.
2) A crying baby gets hot and this raises their temperature; also sleeping raises the temperature. I understand this baby had a fever underlying, but those are other variables to consider along with an inaccurate thermometer and placement.
I am also saddened to hear that the nurses and staff "threw you under the bus" in front of the patients. That is super un-professional. I'd talk with the manager for a debriefing. Approach it as "I want to learn from this experience." Don't hold grudges against the staff or patients. Just take the high road, and learn, and move on.