called in sick, nurse manager calling back (inappropriate tactics?) - page 4

by jbaggins 15,203 Views | 67 Comments

My husband and I work together as RNs on the same unit (ICU) and we work the same schedule. No problems on that front so far between us, staff, or management. Neither of us has called in sick since signing on 18 months ago. ... Read More


  1. 2
    Turn off your phone when you sleep. That is a normal response to anyone who has a cell phone. Charge the phone when it is off.

    I understand your hesitance to go to HR since you are getting a sweet deal about shifts worked. That does not mean you are at beck and call 24/7. Once your DH had called off both phones should have been shut off. Now you know that what will happen, calls and texts all night.

    Turn them off.
    BostonTerrierLoverRN and Fiona59 like this.
  2. 1
    If he's working in the ICU, around pts who are already frail, he doesn't need to be dragging his vomiting self into work and risking the pts health even more. As to the manager--oh, hell, no. If it's the first time calling out and giving plenty of notice and to multiple sources, then he owes nothing further. Calling you to tell him to come in--um, no. What if you weren't married, they wouldn't have that option, so it shouldn't be an option anyway.
    I called out once when my son was sick, running a fever, so he couldn't be in school and couldn't be at a daycare, so I had to stay home with him. The clinical director, over all 200+ employees, called to see if I could come in. I explained what was going on and she was fine with it. The next day, a coworker was griping because she had called out and they called her back in after talking to me; the coworker had called out because her boyfriend had been in the ER and clinical director said sick child trumped boyfriend. Coworker was mad at me. A year later I called out because I was throwing up, clinical director called me an asked if I could come in anyway because we had a heavy schedule that afternoon. I told her I couldn't because I was literally on my way to the ER to get fluids. I was pregnant and that was the first of 4 visits I'd make to the ER. I wound up getting intermittent FMLA during my first hospitalization and missed 3 weeks of work in one month between hospital stays and home health--hard to work when you're hooked up to an IV. Three months after I was back at work on my normal, full-time schedule (wearing a medication pump for a month of it) I got my annual review and was docked several points for my attendance--I hadn't missed a single day since I had gone back to work, and my absences were all protected under FMLA. I got so mad that my attendance was a negative and affected my raise when I had FMLA to protect me.
    Fiona59 likes this.
  3. 1
    Totally inappropriate. He called in sick, end of story.

    On cell phones, I don't have a land line either. Gave it up years ago when it didn't make sense to pay for two phone bills. Also, I like texting. It's often a far more efficient form of communication than a phone call.
    BostonTerrierLoverRN likes this.
  4. 2
    I would report this to HR. It was inappropriate to call you at all, since you are not the employee who called in. Technically it was like calling any other nurse from your unit. It disturbed your sleep which put you at risk for fatique syndrome when working. And if I call in sick that means I am sick and not coming in. Next time do not give her any positive reinforcement by dragging in. Just stick to what the HR policy says about sick calls.
    redhead_NURSE98! and Fiona59 like this.
  5. 0
    I agree with you and support your point of view. Must be really nice to work together with your husband on the same floor and same schedule. On the NM behalf, I think she was desperate...but nevertheless inappropriate.
  6. 0
    Quote from BlueDevil,DNP
    Oh, completely off the rails. Why does she even have your cell phone numbers? She has no business texting you, ever. If my boss ever sent me a text message I think I'd "have a cow," as they saying once went. I cannot even conceive of an environment or circumstance in which that would be remotely acceptable.
    Both of you should file separate complaints to HR, in writing.
    (1) It should stipulate that she is not to ever text message you as a route for formal communications again, unless of course the institution is going to pay for the full cost of maintaining the device.
    (2) Further, stipulate that you expect the institution to honor their own call-in policy. Once you call in sick, that's it. No return calls, ever. You are out for the day.
    (3) Lastly, you and your spouse are separate employees. It is not appropriate for her to try to reach one via the other.

    I am outraged on your behalf. I would want her formally reprimanded.
    1.I agree
    2.I agree
    3.I agree
    1000 percent
    Believe it or not, nurses are not machines. We get sick and injured just like anyone else and if your spouse was sick with stomach flu, he had no business being at work. I sure if you asked the nurses on your unit, they would probably rather triple up for the day instead of catching the stomach virus
    Hope you al are feeling better
  7. 1
    Ridiculous. Your infection control practitioner would have a fit. I hope it wasn't the all too common Norovirus; it spreads like wildfire.
    GrnTea likes this.
  8. 0
    Quote from DizzyLizzyNurse

    What do you mean you got tripled?
    I believe she means that instead of having two patients each (ICU) the nurses would each have three.
  9. 0
    I wish I could tell you that this was outrageous behavior and is unique to your facility, however it is outrageous behavior that occurs frequently in many many places....but DOES seem to be unique to nursing.

    Used to work in a hospital that wouldn't allow you to call out sick more than three hours prior to a shift and you also couldn't call out less than two. So you had this window in which to notify them you were dying (and you had better be). If you called out four hours early, they told you to call back "just to make sure you were still sick". Unbelievable. I once called out 3 hours prior to my 7p-7a shift (I felt like I WAS dying and KNEW I'd be hard to replace, so wanted them to have as much time as possible to fill in my spot) and was told that I should call back at 10pm "in case we need you to come in"!! I actually had to tell the supervisor "I'm not REQUESTING a sick day, I'm TAKING one". I actually had to say "I'm NOT calling you at ten pm because I'm hoping to he(L I'm going to be asleep at that time, since I've not slept all day BECAUSE I'M SICK!"

    I'm now a nurse manager myself. I GET that people get sick and as long as you're not a chronic abuser, it's not the nurse's responsibility to staff the unit, it's the manager's. Thank heaven I have a staff that doesn't call out unless they're keeling over, and even then by the time I know about it, they've found a replacement for themselves
  10. 1
    NM wore him down. No way should he have let that happen.
    He deserves a sick day.. ICU patients deserve not to have a nurse with pathogens .. exposing them in a fragile state.
    BostonTerrierLoverRN likes this.


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