Im the sick call nurse at a new GEO facility that was built with a sick call room in each inmate building. I push a medical record cart to each building and have the I/Ms from that building called out to wait in a hall until I can see them. I do not have an officer in the hall but the hall does have a camera. I have two significant problems;
1. this being the main corridor for I/M traffic and they do not have security escorts, they constantly gather outside my door to leer, make sexual comments and masturbate. When I can get names I write them up but ususally they don't have their ID badges on.
2. My HSA tells me it is common for 30-40 sick calls to be seen in an 8 hour day, with count and getting set up in each building I am only able to see 10-15.
I am an old nurse (25 years) but new to corrections (6 mons). Any suggestions, other than quitting?
Jun 1, '12
Inmates congegating in front of you and being inappropriate? That's a major security issue.
And 30 - 40 sick calls? That's ridiculous. Are there other nurses in your facility? Do they watch lewd behaviour while they're seeing 30 sick calls? Talk to them. I'm thinking you probably work for a private prison medical company and are not a county or state employee. So you are probably not unionized. The prison management does not care about a private company contract nurse and the medical firm cares only for its revenue.
Unless you can find someone to sit up and take notice of this ridiculous state of affairs, I'd be burning rubber out of their parking lot. Good luck.
Aug 25, '12
Are the inmates charged for each sick call? That seems to be a deterrent. Not that we want them to avoid seeing us if they aren't sick. But they are not going to turn in a kite every time they have a hangnail. Also they have to turn in the kites before I get there in the morning. If not it goes to the pm shift. Unless of course it is an emergency.
Sep 1, '12
Too many inmates are being called out at one time, if they have the time to engage in that type of behavior. Can you reduce the number of inmates waiting?
Sep 2, '12
I would also suggest having an officer present outside of the door for safety and observational purposes.
At the last Jail I worked at, if the inmates were masterbating/gunning, they would be charged. If they continued, the jail would issue charges of Sexual Offender at the local court which in it self is a life time label!
Good luck, and regardless of the issue, gunning is never appropriate!!!
A Male Jail DON
Dec 25, '12
Is your facility accredited? If it is, you may find help here National Commission on Correctional Health Care
If not, you may have more problems than can be addressed with your current chain of command. Good luck.
Jan 10, '13
I work at a county jail with approximately 600 I/M and our pa and a rn usually get stuck seeing 100 I/M on Mondays. It's crazy, but they get it done in 10 hours which is 2 hours later than our don wants them to be staying. Normally our s/c has 50 I/M and that doesn't include psyc.
Jan 12, '13
That is similar to how my old prison used to work. The safety concerns were overwhelming and eventually I left upon finding an acute care position.
Jan 14, '13
As far as inmates masturbating/making sexual comments/etc., the Florida Department of Corrections lost a major lawsuit for failing to reel this in. Two coworkers who formerly worked for FDOC told me that they reported the behavior repeatedly, but were told "that's just how inmates are" and they were told to "deal with it." Well, deal with it they did, to the tone of several million dollars. If your employer does nothing to stop it (I'm assuming that you have reported this behavior), they stand to lose a hostile work environment suit.
Jan 15, '13
Sick call is the main reason I left correctional nursing. I hated those stupid kites! I'll take pushing a med cart in LTC over that nonsense any day.
Jan 24, '13
1. Require that they have their ID badge. Without it, How can you have two verifiable pieces of identification necessary to dispense meds? At our facility, if they do not have an ID badge, they must leave and report to the lieutenant's office. You have to be firm with the inmates and make them know that their behavior will not be tolerated. If they don't have ID kick them out. If they are lewd, write them up and kick them out.
2. We ONLY allow sick call on the 7am move. If they arrive later than that they are not seen. We usually get 10-20 people for sick call.
I really hope your situation gets better. If you ever feel uncomfortable, can you request an officer?
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