"Gone Postal"

  1. I am working with a very short tempered male nurse. Most of us are terrified of him. Several complaints were made about him. Surprise,surprise he's still around. What do we do now? Any thoughts?
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  2. 8 Comments

  3. by   Hellllllo Nurse
    Document, document.

    I once had a nursing instructor who would go postal. I bought a mini tape recorder to tape her next "postal" outburst. She found out about the tape recorder and never went postal again. Maybe you could tape his next outburst. Adm may take the problem more seriously if they actually hear it themselves.
  4. by   4EverStudent
    Depending on what state you are in management has to have documentation regarding specific incidents and counseling done before they are able to get rid of someone. While this stinks for you at this time it is there to protect you in the future. In the meantime do your job, and minimize contact with this nurse you might even request to switch shifts or to work on days when he is not present explaining your fear of him losing his temper with you or worse yet a patient who can't protect themself. This serves a dual purpose it gets you away from him and lets management know that it must be serious if coworkers are not willing to work with him. Good Luck with whatever you decide.
  5. by   Alnamvet
    Quote from Lysa
    I am working with a very short tempered male nurse. Most of us are terrified of him. Several complaints were made about him. Surprise,surprise he's still around. What do we do now? Any thoughts?
    This indeed is a problem...and it may infect the many new male nurses entering the field...forever and a day, female nurses have been going postal since day one...from nursing school, at the job, and even in grad school, female nurses have been riding rough shod on male students and nurses; but there is light at the end of the tunnel...as more male nurses enter the profession, the numbers of female nurses who display this type of behavior will appear to diminish, as some of these males will adopt the behaviors of the former dominant group. :chuckle
  6. by   SmilingBluEyes
    what about elevating this all the way to the top? risk management? documentation? yes documention, but it won't stop a tragedy that is in the making now. IF he is as dangerous as you say, keep banging the gong and LOUDLY.
  7. by   ferfer
    My opinion is one slightly different. This cannot be a cut and dry issue and there is not enough info to go on for a proper response. Is this worker angry, perform unsafely, grumpy to pts or just staff? Some examples? If his behaviour is out of line and jeopardizing things than maybe the best thing to do is approach him on a one to one basis. There are often so many hidden things that people deal with at home and outside of work that we are not aware of. While that does not excuse his behavior, maybe he just needs someone to point it out to him in a way that is very open, honest, and non-judgemental. We do not know why he is this way in the first place. Just ask. Saying something like " I have noticed you getting very upset lately and I find myself feeling scared when I am around you" is honest and opens up the conversation in a way that he may give you answers or finally realize how he is acting. If this fails, than absolutely begin to up through the chain of command. Always document as well.....all good advice from previous posts.
  8. by   Tweety
    The other thing to watch with these kinds of people is addiction.

    These days you can't fire someone just because they are a hot head, grouchy, mean or whatever, you have to have documented instances and be written up a multitude of times and "counseled". He may be somewhere in the process and you don't know.

    I've had nurses come to me, "so and so is such a bad nurse and no one's doing anything about it". My response is "have you seen their personnel file, have you been privy to private meetings we've been having with this person."

    Just because you and your coworkers want him out of there isn't good enough.

    Good luck. As was said. Bang the gong loudly. Inappropriate behavior should not have to be tolerated or accepted. Each and every time, if each and every one of you report it, something might happen. But what usually happens is people grumple and complain, and management maybe gets one or two complaints, which isn't enough to fire someone.
  9. by   teeituptom
    Quote from Lysa
    I am working with a very short tempered male nurse. Most of us are terrified of him. Several complaints were made about him. Surprise,surprise he's still around. What do we do now? Any thoughts?
    Simple, you find a nurse bigger and uglier and meaner.
    someone like me, to take him to the parking lot and explain a few things to him

    deep down Im really a ***** cat meeooowwwwww
  10. by   heart queen
    T-tom, you're such a mess, where' ya been all my nursing career

    Now there is something called EAP, employee assistive program where I work. Not every angry, abusive nurse needs to be fired, many need help with life skills and anger mangement, have issues that we have NO idea about. We have NO idea what load this person carries at home.

    No... not making excuses, saying that many hospitals have skilled counselors who can help. Write up your observations, approach the manager and ask if they see it fit to do a referal to EAP, if you have it. If you are comfortable, then ask the employee what on earth is up, what can the unit do to help....

    You didn't mention if this was a new trait, or an ongoing personality defect. BIG difference in MY book. I've gone as far as to having my best work friend removed from patient care because she was unstable due to home life.. so I've had to make tough choices... been there... But if you can't approach this guy, you're forced to let it continue... not an answer, or do something through management... you can't always count on your peers to do it WITH you or FOR you. You also can't bank on the fact that management "KNOWS". If you've not gone there, maybe no one else has either... don't enable.

    As I've said before ..easier said than done.

    since I'm being long winded, if you're being verbally abused you can say at that moment.."do you realize what you've just said...... how do you expect me to respond to that... you might consider taking 5, then trying that response a different way... don't approach me with that tone, please lower your voice, you're at the nurses station.. (with any flare up from any of the above, immediatly involve the charge nurse, after saying we'll continue this when you are able to controll the volume and tone of your voice... walk away... then DOCUMENT until the pen is empty.

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