Hey guys. I need some outside input.
first some background: I work in a midsized teaching facility with a 10 bed ICU and 16 bed IICU. DON started 1st of year. Critical care manager 4 months ago. I have been here 2 1/2 years and have seniority in the IICU day staff. Many new grads. ( 6). We have had a mass exit from the ICU. None of the contigent staff have signed the new contracts ( they ask for an extra weekend shift per month and a third holiday for year ) . All regular staff in the ICU on 7p-7a shift have left. NONE AT ALL LEFT. we have been staffing with agency. 2 1/2 weeks ago the manager mandated biweekly swing shifts for the remaining 6 ICU nurses. as you can expect, i hear of more resignations. 2 weeks ago senior management felt that a Critical Care Liaison would help and I was selected. I am comitted to trying to make things better but at this point have few ideas.
I am chairing a task force made up of staff nurses and an administrative rep. We have brainstormed about things that may improve conditions but short of hiring a full staff and getting rid of current management, don't really feel there are many alternatives. I am meeting with senior management ( DON and VP Medical Affairs ) weekly but havent had anything accomplished yet. Tonight is my second task force meeting- i will be reviewing with staff the answers management has given so far but they are unsatisfactory. Management wants the remaining 6 ICU nurses to cover the unit ( no only open to 4-6 patients) with 2 regular staff on each shift. impossible. many have children starting school soon and will not work a night shift at all. The IICU staff is unfamiliar with swanz and icp monitoring-- otherwise we take all the same patients. IICU staff are being mandated to attend an ICU education session over the next 12 weeks and there are fears that, without precepting, will be pulled to cover the unit . I have made these issues known to managment and the assure that is not the case but, history is on our side.
well enough - input please????
Jul 22, '02
As an ICU nurse working in an ICU with a mass exodus problem, I feel what you are going through! Fortunately, I work in a unionized environment. We are not required to rotate shifts after 5 years. We can volunteer but they cannot force us to. I too have beaten my head against a wall trying to get management and administration to see the light. That is where the major problem lies. If they expect people to give up their personal lives, they are delusional. What would they do to the remaining few if you all refused to rotate? Can you get employment elsewhere if they can you guys if you do take a stand? I wish I had some creative ideas but you need licensed RN's to arrive by the bus load and I just don't see that happening. Do not let the suits put the onus on the staff. They created this problem and they have to fix it. It is all well and good to try to be part of the solution but be careful because if anything goes wrong they will point the finger at you.
If I were in a situation that sounds as desparate as yours my resignation would be handed in toot sweet!
Jul 22, '02
What do the docs say about this? Do you have a medical director of each unit? I think if you would have the last remaining nurses write objective, factual letters to management with copies to the hospital board, and the medical director of the hospital and whatever the teaching facility is, you may see some changes in the near future. (Hopefully the suits who caused this problem would get canned!). Have you spoken to the nurses who left? Is there an indication that they would return if positive changes occur? I'm afraid that you have been chosen to be the skapegoat here; CYA! I don't think there is a solution to these serious problems until this management is out of there.
Jul 22, '02
Jenny the medical staff is fit to be tied. they feel that they have been left outside in the rain. the intensivist said to me last week," I guess soon it will be me and you." they have tried to close bed to 4 but as soon as there is a bad post op or trauma they open another bed, so now there are 6 open. the nurses that left were contacted by the CEO last week. he had honest discussions with each of them. They will not return with current unit management in place. However, we don't see current management going anywhere anytime soon. as liaison I am working with the staff as a team I will not be the scapegoat. I am not going to any meetings without witness. tonight we had a task force meeting and I have recorded a problem statement and solution for the most pressing issue. I will be meeting soon with the senior management. several other nurses are looking for other employment. I will be checking this forum for all your words of wisdom and would like to keep this thread open. thanks for your help.
Jul 23, '02
All I can say is "I'm glad I don't work there!!!!" I wish you all the luck in the world, Minurse, and I think you are going to need it!
Must Read Topics