Dangers of Labeling Inmates - Stories Sought - page 3
:typing I'm developing an inservice program for correctional nurses about the dangers of 'labeling' inmates. For example, always assuming that the inmate is 'faking' the health issue (although we... Read More
0Jun 6, '10 by suesmith48All of your very well-reasoned responses lead us to one thing - the importance of the CQI process in helping us to resolve our dilemmas...
tlc365 - you discuss near constant distractions that delay your med administration process. First, the fact that you are having so many distractions is more than just an inconvenience that slows you down. Accordng to the Institute of Medicine (in the To Err is Human report) distractions during the med administration process is a major contributor to medication error. Some hospitals have moved to place a "NO DISTRACTION" zone around med carts. It sounds like you have some process problems, like medication distribution and communication. Addressing the problems has the potential to save med administration time (which will save $$) and decrease medication errors (which cost $$).
Orca - right on! We walk a fine line between respecting custody for the very difficult job that they have and losing our nursing values. Certainly we need to acknowledge the importance of safety and security, but we can do that and maintain our identity as nurses. It just takes some critical thinking (well, integrity and a good moral compass help as well).
0Jun 7, '10 by OrcaCorrectional nursing is a good field to be in, but I don't recommend it as a first job in nursing. It requires a lot of independence, and without prior experience it is difficult to do well. Some agencies hire new grads, mine doesn't. Applicants are required to have at least a year of experience to hire on with us, and I believe that is a good idea given the environment.
0Jul 5, '10 by tbrd450Quote from suesmith48"Sometimes inmates do complain of symptoms they are not really experiencing (so do patients on the outside). However, the only reliable way to make sure is to see and assess the patient -- which takes less time than responding to an emergency, enduring the resulting investigation, defending your actions at work and potentially before your Board of Nursing and explaining it to any subsequent employer"Hi Lorry,
After 20 years of correctional nursing, I could go on and on and on - here are a couple stories that come to mind (and please keep in mind that these nurses were both known as good nurses):
- A nurse from one of our county jails told me this story and another confirmed it. They had a man frequently arrested for various charges, usually drunk and disorderly. He liked to play "tricks" on the nurses and would complain of chest pain, knowing that they would have to see him. Sometimes he'd even laugh and admit to it. One night, a CO came to the booking nurse saying that this man was again complaining of chest pain. She was busy and told the CO that she would see the inmate when she finished seeing the booking detainees. The CO summoned her again in less than an hour - the man was unresponsive. He had suffered a heart attack and did not survive. The family sued the county jail and her (resulting in her termination) and reported her to the state board of nursing (where she did have to defend her actions).
- One evening in one of our state prisons, a nurse received a call from one of the housing units - the CO said a young inmate was complaining of an asthma attack. The nurse was busy with other duties, but did review the inmate's medical record. She found no history of asthma and told the CO to have the inmate sign up for the next day's sick call to be evaluated. The CO called back about an hour later - the inmate was unresponsive - he did not survive either. The nurse was disciplined for her actions.
AND IN SO DOING A FELLOW HUMAN BEING MAY NOT HAVE TO DIE!