Am I wrong?

  1. Ok.... I have a situation/question I need some help with. I work with a nurse that has been doing a lot of things that should not be done by a nurse. I have been asked to work under this nurse, she is a RN, and I'm only a LPN. I am very anxious about working under her! My concern is that if she does something stupid, like incorrect documentation, not doing her job, etc.... that she may turn it around and blame it all on me, thus putting my license at risk also! I'm planning on keeping documentation of my own when something goes bad when I work with her, and covering my butt. She has also been known to not do her paperwork, pick fights with residents, do her homework while she is suppose to be working, and is well known for hiding from other staff.

    So, am I wrong for not wanting to work with her and wanting to protect my license? Opinions please. I know that we can't always not work with someone we don't like, but I just don't want to lose my license, which I've had for a long time and have worked very hard to get and keep!
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  2. 9 Comments

  3. by   Ted
    I don't think that it's ever wrong to practice safely, as well as practice within the scope of one's license.

    Hopefully your hospital has clear job descriptions to what an RN can do, what an LPN can do, as well is what an RN can safely and legally delegate to other RNs (from other units, etc.), LPNs and CNAs. Assuming such clear job descriptions exist and that they follow your state's legal scope of practice for RNs and LPNs, I would say that there exists much to back you up should you be asked to do something by any RN (or MD, for that matter) that is outside your scope of practice. Know your scope of practice.

    With all of that said, how unreasonable would it be to discuss your concerns with your nurse manager?? Hopefully he or she will at least simply let you express your concerns (vent) and keep them confidential (of course).

    Regarding documentation. . . again, if done as expected by your hospital's policies and within your "scope of practice", you should be safe. And again, if there's any questions you might have regarding this, ask your nurse manager for clarification if you feel unsure about documentation.

    It is no fun working with people you don't trust. One way to help cope with such situations is to be confident and knowledgeable with one's own practice, and be the professional health-care giver that you are. There are communication techniques one can use to professionally confront another health-care giver should he or she put you in an unsafe situation. Simply expressing your concern about the unsafe situation is one technique: "I am concerned about. . . . "; "I believe that this situation is unsafe. . . ", etc. Keeping the safety of the patient first might/should help with this. If your concerns go unheeded, go up the management/administrative "ladder". It's o.k. to "go up the ladder" when expressed concerns are ignored.

    Good luck to you. . . .
    Last edit by Ted on Mar 21, '12
  4. by   classicdame
    your best prevention is to document effectively. Does not matter what notes you take home. That can be construed as you thought their MIGHT be a problem so you kept notes. I would certainly discuss with supervisor anything I see that is against NPA or policy. People who cheat will cheat on anything - like stealing med and not doing quality patient care.
  5. by   nurseprnRN
    do what you are supposed to do, chart thoroughly and accurately, and you have little to worry about. this whole "lose my license" thing is grossly overstated around here. seriously.
    http://allnurses.com/general-nursing-discussion/scared-make-mistake-680028.html

    report anything you see that is unsafe or out of her scope of practice up the chain of command.
  6. by   nurseprnRN
    duplicate again
  7. by   mazy
    Why on earth would you lose your license? Just do your job, document carefully, eventually you will be able to stand tall on your own and do your own thing without worrying about her.
  8. by   GitanoRN
    first of all, you're not an i quote "only an lpn" you're part of a valuable team. certainly, as long as you practice under your scope of duties, and document, document, you should be alright. having said that, all of us in one time or another has had to work with less competent individuals in our careers, and i'm afraid we all have witness that. regarding losing your license why would you? i don't understand your concern. just perform your duties to your best of capabilities and don't worry about someone else's lack of performance. wishing you the best always ....aloha~
  9. by   NurseLoveJoy88
    You are never an only anything, okay?
  10. by   BostonTerrierLoverRN
    Quote from mazy
    Why on earth would you lose your license? Just do your job, document carefully, eventually you will be able to stand tall on your own and do your own thing without worrying about her.
    BANG ON

    I have worked with some real winners, but you will always have one in every facility that by some chance when all the planets and stars were in allignment, they got through school and passed boards.

    Just do your job, Practice with Scope, and don't let him or her corrupt you in anyway. Stand-up for yourself, and guard your license.

    As far as him or her is concerned, if she/he is truly unsafe, I hope you would advocate for all the patients enough to resolve the situation if it warrants. I think we have all been there and done that,. . . or it's coming.

    It's all about the Patient's Safety First.
  11. by   WildOne
    Quote from mickeypat
    Ok.... she is a RN, and I'm onlyi a LPN.
    You are not just an LPN always remember that. We are all nurses

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