Visitors that are drinking in patient rooms......What do I do? Visitors that are drinking in patient rooms......What do I do? | allnurses

Visitors that are drinking in patient rooms......What do I do?

  1. 0 Recently we had a patient who was not expected to live more than a few days, and she was actually dying from cirrhosis of the liver, brought on from years of alcohol abuse. Her visitors actually brought alcohol to the room and were drinking, acting out loudly and causing a huge commotion during visiting hours while other families were also having visitors. So, what would you do?
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  2. 19 Comments

  3. Visit  lisajtrn profile page
    #1 4
    Would have had them escorted out by security. Sad that this would have to happen to the visitors of a dying patient but this behaviour would not be tolerated.
  4. Visit  NicuGal profile page
    #2 0
    Same, security would have been called.
  5. Visit  Carpediem1012 profile page
    #3 1
    Umm, kick their butts out?
  6. Visit  pookyp profile page
    #4 1
    Ummm kick them out? I can't believe this was even posted. Lol this is common sense.
  7. Visit  ktwlpn profile page
    #5 6
    It's really not that simple. Every one deals with end of life issues differently. Some family members gather quietly around the bed in a darkened room and speak in whispers,others throw open the curtains, blaze all the lights and sit and tell funny stories about the soon to be departed. In this case ETOH obviously is a major factor in the family's daily life. Why not have a drink to Aunt Sally? You have to draw the line when it encroaches on the comfort of others and honor the needs of the family and patient. Why wasn't she sent home with hospice of transferred out to the floor where she could have a private or semi private room? I would have advocated for that.
  8. Visit  Sun0408 profile page
    #6 2
    Call security and let them deal with it, let your NM know as well...
  9. Visit  loriangel14 profile page
    #7 1
    I had this situation once. It was a mom dying from ETOH abuse and her kids who were in their 20s were drinking beer in her room. They weren't being disruptive so we left them alone.They didn't see the irony of having a few while she lay dying of alcoholism.
  10. Visit  serenidad2004 profile page
    #8 6
    Simple answer... ask them to refrain from drinking alcohol while in the hospital and remind them if they can't do that they will be asked to leave. If they're being loud and disruptive have security escort them out.
    While everyone deals with the illness or dying of a family member differently it is not appropriate. It isn't respectful of their family member other patients or the staff. I would imagine it could also be a liability for the hospital. What if one of them fell and hurt themselves?
  11. Visit  Esme12 profile page
    #9 5
    They cannot proceed to get drunk on hospital grounds and not everyone gets to go home on hospice.

    I would go up the chain of command....call your supervisor and let her know of the disruptive behavior. If someone is going to take a hit for the behavior let it be them...that is their job. If they are so disruptive and won't quiet down they can be requested to leave. It might be Saturday night and yes they can grieve their way but it is NOT a barroom and they cannot disturb an entire floor.

    They can be arrested for public intox which would be the supervisors call.
  12. Visit  CrazierThanYou profile page
    #10 0
    This is a no brainer. Call security.
  13. Visit  lamazeteacher profile page
    #11 0
    I was tempted at first, to go the "call security" route. That would have gotten them out of my hair.
    However that could lead then, to a "driving under the influence" citation (best case scenario); or worst case, there's an accident and someone also dies.....

    Hospitals need to have a crisis intervention plan for this, and a set procedure for best outcome. The dying patient's needs aren't for decorum in the room, or to have a hushed, reverential gathering of their clan. There is a need for consideration of others. ETOH is an illness, and other illnesses have a procedure called, "stay home if you're acutely ill".

    Since most people deny being very ill, a family member (who isn't "under the influence") needs to call a family friend to arrange to drive "partiers" home, separately for safety's sake. Tell them that the choice is a police escort to jail, or a friend who will take the drunks home. Use security for backup, if needed.
    Last edit by lamazeteacher on Aug 21, '13 : Reason: Clarity
  14. Visit  aTOMicTom profile page
    #12 3
    Quote from innocence13
    Recently we had a patient who was not expected to live more than a few days, and she was actually dying from cirrhosis of the liver, brought on from years of alcohol abuse. Her visitors actually brought alcohol to the room and were drinking, acting out loudly and causing a huge commotion during visiting hours while other families were also having visitors. So, what would you do?
    Does your facility charge a corkage fee? You might suggest that to the administration, as a revenue generator.


    But seriously, I'd ask them to stop and if they didn't, I'd call sek-yo-tay. Not so much for the letter-of-the-law ETOH violation, but because they were "causing a huge commotion". And to CYA.

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