Bad Habits Nurses Develop - page 11

I don't know about you, but out in the "real world" I've seen a lot of things that would not fly in school! Here are a few: Pre-popping pills Not using MARs on med pass Not washing hands/using... Read More

  1. by   RNfromMN
    I used to work with severly developmentally disabled pts. Many of these pts were in vegetative states (non-verbal, non-responsive). They can't make decisions for themselves, but whenever I walked into their rooms, I always had one-sided "conversations" with them. "Good morning________! Ready to get up now? What do you want to wear today? How about this shirt? Okay, time to roll over...time for supper...ready for bed now? Okay, sounds good to me..."

    After a few months, I realized I had started talking to myself - out loud - this way at home! "Okay, Jessica, time to put your shoe-sies on..." I live alone, so...yeah, this was me actually talking to myself
  2. by   Indy
    Quote from GooeyRN
    I have seen staff NOT wear gloves when changing briefs. Yuck. The only time I don't wear gloves for changing a soiled mess is on my own baby.

    I am guilty of sometimes given OTC meds not ordered... But only after asking the pt if they have an allergy or SE related to the meds. AND I KNOW they had the meds ordered last time they were admitted, if it were a short time ago. (Small rural hospital- we get the same pts over and over again.) The docs encourage this on mid-night shift (all but one) so we don't wake them during the night. They tell us to just write the order and they will sign it in the morning, DO NOT wake them for an OTC if it was ordered in the past. However, I ALWAYS pass it on it report if I gave something that wasn't ordered.

    On my unit there's a couple of docs who would rather sign orders in the AM for OTC's but I have to be careful. I don't do that unless it's a doc who has personally chewed me out for the act of picking up the phone at 3 am. Plus we have to be careful to not hand milk of mag, etc. to a renal patient. Our most common OTC's would be milk of mag, maalox (which isn't floor stock anymore darnit), tylenol. I can not help but wonder why in the name of peter, paul and mary, would a doc admit a patient for "chest pain" and not have the gamut of GI drugs ordered along with the nitro and morphine. In my hospital, "chest pain" has been known to be the universal translation for "I ate too much turkey and my leg hurts!" The one night I got an admit with naught but a bottle of mag citrate ordered, I did a happy dance as the doc was ordering it!
  3. by   brendamyheart
    Quote from night owl
    I have the bad habit of losing my pen :selfbonk: and then picking up someone elses. :uhoh21: Must learn not. to. lose. my. own. pen. And it goes like this...

    THEM: "Hey, that's my pen!"

    ME: "It is? Here ya go. I'm sorry, I didn't mean to steal your pen." :smackingf

    ME:"Anyone seen mine? It's purple with the drug name Nexium written on it?" "Can I borrow your pen? I'll give it right back."

    Next day...

    ME: "Hey that's MY pen!"

    THEM: "It is? I was wondering who it belonged to."

    ME: "Thanks."

    Then it starts all over again.

    ME: <to self> Dam, where's that pen? Here's one...
    . That is me!!!
  4. by   tlcprn2u
    Pens and more pens!! Oh please, do not even get me started on that. When I find one that writes well, where the ink flows just right, and the grip is adequate, I try to lay claim on it. Trouble is, most of the time, it is not my own. So then the whole process starts again.
  5. by   ElvishDNP
    These are bad habits that I am trying to change on myself:

    Coming home with enough alcohol swabs, 2x2s etc to start a black market medical supply company.

    Unintenionally walking off with other people's pens, esp. if they are cool pens. I even did it from a patient the other night! (I gave it back.)

    Checking the moon on the drive to work (I work mother/baby).

    Automatically assuming the residents will know who I'm talking about when I call them about "Mrs. Jones in room XXXX) without giving a little background info.
  6. by   txspadequeenRN
    I refused a shift in LTC the other day because it was a full moon...Just did not think I was up to the challenge!!!!!



    Quote from meownsmile
    Checkin to see if there is a full moon.
  7. by   cheshirecat
    Stuffing my face full of chocs at the nurses station even though I am diabetic and should know better.....
  8. by   tvccrn
    On the pen issue....Hi, I'm tvccrn and I steal other people's pens.

    I am a pen thief and I know it. So do the staff I work with. It doesn't have to write good , just look pretty. I prefer a very fine point to write with, but the majority of the pens I have in my desk are medium point. I have come to grips with it and have reached a compromise.

    If I see a pen that I like, I give a warning. It goes like this...

    "Hey, that's a nice (pretty, neat, cool-looking) pen"

    Everyone knows if I say that to them, they are to guard their pens with their lives.

    tvccrn
    Last edit by tvccrn on Dec 4, '06 : Reason: spelling and grammar
  9. by   txspadequeenRN
    LOL..What is it about nurses stealing pens?????

    I did a flu shot clinic the other day and OH the pretty pens that were there...anyway...After that I went to Walmart and was signing a check and I ask the lady for a pen then out of habit put it in my pocket...The lady said "Hey you took my pen". I said Oh I'm sorry and pulled out about 15 pens I had lifted during the day..She had to sift through the loot to find which one was her's.....LOLOLOL...


    Quote from tvccrn
    On the pen issue....Hi, I'm tvccrn and I steal other people's pens.

    I am a pen thief and I know it. So do the staff I work with. It doesn't have to write good , just look pretty. I prefer a very fine point to write with, but the majority of the pens I have in my desk are medium point. I have come to grips with it and have reached a compromise.

    If I see a pen that I like, I give a warning. It goes like this...

    "Hey, that's a nice (pretty, neat, cool-looking) pen"

    Everyone knows if I say that to them, they are to guard their pens with their lives.

    tvccrn
  10. by   rach_nc_03
    Quote from Jessica 392
    I used to work with severly developmentally disabled pts. Many of these pts were in vegetative states (non-verbal, non-responsive). They can't make decisions for themselves, but whenever I walked into their rooms, I always had one-sided "conversations" with them. "Good morning________! Ready to get up now? What do you want to wear today? How about this shirt? Okay, time to roll over...time for supper...ready for bed now? Okay, sounds good to me..."

    After a few months, I realized I had started talking to myself - out loud - this way at home! "Okay, Jessica, time to put your shoe-sies on..." I live alone, so...yeah, this was me actually talking to myself
    when I worked in PICU, where 90% of the kids were newborns, intubated, or both, I talked to them all the time in the same way (I don't do baby-talk, just chatting with them like you said above)....while my husband was overseas, I got *really* bad about talking to myself. He's busted me doing it in the other room while I'm getting dressed...

    although *he* talks to the tv (usually when it's on the 24 hour news channel and he's all @#$%#ed off about the topic at hand). We always wonder if the other person is talking to themselves, or to each other.
  11. by   rach_nc_03
    not cleaning the visibly bloody strip-end of the blood glucose monitor.

    when I worked in LTC, the DON gave me an article about a recent incident where a LTC had a bad Hep C outbreak- it was tied to nurses and aides not cleaning the blood glucose monitors between patients when they were visibly soiled. State regs were in the works to require cleaning between each patient, or individual machines for each patient. (yeah, right!)

    In another job, I was being precepted by two different nurses. One always charted all her VS and I/Os at the end of her shift; she kept a running list on the legs of her scrubs! (good thing it was ICU and she only had two patients max, right?) When I started doing that the next night when I was with nurse #2 (seemed like a nice time-saver; did it on paper instead of pants, though), she had a hissy and lectured me on timely charting. Fine. Next shift with nurse #1, I got reprimanded for charting q2h. 'use your pants!' Ugh!

    Oh- and logging on the computer to chart, but not saving, then getting up to do something with the patient (ICU, computers at bedside). Docs come in on rounds, sit down at computer, log you out and start charting on their own. So you sit down later and there are hours and hours without any data charted. (I was totally guilty of this; I thought, stupidly, that the darn things would have an auto-save, y'know?)

    I'm a huge glove advocate- might have something to do with getting MRSA on my eye before I was a nurse (was doing therapy dog visits, never had any contact with bodily fluids). An instructor in school taught that we should only glove to clean patients, it would offend them otherwise. I just couldn't bring myself to do that. Besides, I found it easier to have a routine down- foam cleanser before I enter the room, then glove while I'm talking to patient and getting ready to do whatver. Of course, I worked mostly with neuro ICU adults and babies- both of which had plenty of liquipoo- so I guess it was a good idea.

    I got so into the foam cleanser habit that I use it automatically when I see it in doctors' offices. Heh. I get some looks.

    Also- this isn't a nursing bad habit, but a facility bad policy- not having latex-free gloves available to people with documented allergies. Happened at the place where I was doing occ health, and 3 aides had latex allergies. I eventually kept a stash in my office and gave them each a supply at the start of their shift. The place kept them in the locked med room and there was rarely an opportunity for a staff nurse to grab them for the aides.

    I made sure they had documentation in their employee health files of the allergy, too. Irritated the snot out of me that the bottom line was more important than a life-threatening allergy.

    Oh, I also worked in a clinical research lab and supervised phlebotomists; they would wear one pair of gloves through a blood draw session (about 50 subjects per phlebotomist). When I had a fit, one of them told me OSHA had approved it.
    Last edit by rach_nc_03 on Dec 4, '06 : Reason: clarity and verbosity! :)
  12. by   UM Review RN
    not cleaning the visibly bloody strip-end of the blood glucose monitor.

    when I worked in LTC, the DON gave me an article about a recent incident where a LTC had a bad Hep C outbreak- it was tied to nurses and aides not cleaning the blood glucose monitors between patients when they were visibly soiled. State regs were in the works to require cleaning between each patient, or individual machines for each patient. (yeah, right!)
    This one confused me. Were you sticking patients with the same lancet? Otherwise, I don't see how the patients were contaminated with others' blood. Could you explain, please?


    More on-topic:
    I have occasionally caught myself re-palpating a potential venous access site after I swabbed it. So I re-swab until I get it right. Makes me feel stupid though.
  13. by   octopus
    I constantly see nurses carrying around sharps without a sharps container - just a syringe in their hand.

    Not handwashing properly.

    Not checking expiry dates on medications.

    Not checking patient ID bands before giving meds to them.

    Preparing medications for 3 or 4 patients at a time then giving them out - to the right patient of course!

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