Do Day Nurses Really Feel that Night Nurses Do Nothing All Night? - page 3

Having worked the 12 hour night shift in many hospitals I find the same things. Day shift nurses leave us so much work to do that we're playing catch up all night. We start off 2 hours behind... Read More

  1. by   reddixon
    I think management sets up the thinking that nites works less. Afterall, isn't that why we are always staffed with less nurses? I think night nurses HAVE to work better as a team than day nurses too because we only have each other. No drs., no techs, NO SUPPORT. We help each othe or we sink!!
  2. by   nursedawn67
    Originally posted by moonrose2u
    nah, they are busy...but its a different kind of busy..u know, all those "paperwork" responsibilities they are given..

    and lets not forget our patients...they all come alive at night..

    Yes day shift is very busy due to alot of people giving orders and getting in the way. Where night shift doesn't. Night shift also doesn't have the advantage of alot of extra help in an emergency, where night shift staffing is limited. Really you cannot compare the 2 shifts they are totally different shifts/jobs.
  3. by   Sandra Bennett
    MANY OF THE PROBLEMS I HAVE SEEN DESCRIBED ARE CAUSED BY HOSP UNDERSTAFFING. I AM A WEO RN AND THEY WERE UNDERSTAFFING WEEKENDS TERRIBLY BUT BECAUSE I WAS ABLE TO HAVE A LIST OF ACUITIES AND NUMBER OF PATIENTS FOR A FEW MONTS OF WEEKENDS WE ARE NOW STAFFED ON NIGHTS THE SAME AS ON DAYS WITH ONE EXCEPTION. INSTEAD OF A UNIT RN FLOATING TO DO ADMITS WE HAVE A HSOP FLOAT TO DO ADMITS. WE STILL GET THEM DONE AS SHE HAS 12 HRS TO DO THEM AND WE HAVE FEWER ADMITS AT NIGHT. AS FFOR DAYS DUMPING ON US, ANYONE WHO CONSISTENTLY COMPLAINS ABOUT ANOTHER SHIFT IS MADE TO WORK A WEEK ON THAT SHIFT. THAT CAN BE A REAL EYEOPENER FOR ALL CONCERNED AND IT REALLY HAS HELPED. MUCH MORE TEAMWORK NOW.ALSO, DAYS DOES ODD BATHS AND IV TUBING CHANGES AND NIGHTS FDOES EVENS. NO EXCUSES AS TO WHY IT WAS LEFT FOR THE NEXT SHIFT. THIS HAS REALLY HELPED. MAYBE SOME OF THIS COULD HELP WHERE YOU WORK.
  4. by   Brita01
    Originally posted by Sandra Bennett
    MANY OF THE PROBLEMS I HAVE SEEN DESCRIBED ARE CAUSED BY HOSP UNDERSTAFFING. I AM A WEO RN AND THEY WERE UNDERSTAFFING WEEKENDS TERRIBLY BUT BECAUSE I WAS ABLE TO HAVE A LIST OF ACUITIES AND NUMBER OF PATIENTS FOR A FEW MONTS OF WEEKENDS WE ARE NOW STAFFED ON NIGHTS THE SAME AS ON DAYS WITH ONE EXCEPTION. INSTEAD OF A UNIT RN FLOATING TO DO ADMITS WE HAVE A HSOP FLOAT TO DO ADMITS. WE STILL GET THEM DONE AS SHE HAS 12 HRS TO DO THEM AND WE HAVE FEWER ADMITS AT NIGHT. AS FFOR DAYS DUMPING ON US, ANYONE WHO CONSISTENTLY COMPLAINS ABOUT ANOTHER SHIFT IS MADE TO WORK A WEEK ON THAT SHIFT. THAT CAN BE A REAL EYEOPENER FOR ALL CONCERNED AND IT REALLY HAS HELPED. MUCH MORE TEAMWORK NOW.ALSO, DAYS DOES ODD BATHS AND IV TUBING CHANGES AND NIGHTS FDOES EVENS. NO EXCUSES AS TO WHY IT WAS LEFT FOR THE NEXT SHIFT. THIS HAS REALLY HELPED. MAYBE SOME OF THIS COULD HELP WHERE YOU WORK.


    It sounds like your hospital has really got it together.
  5. by   Dr. Kate
    Of course the day shift thinks the night shift does nothing. And nights thinks the day shift is making it all up. So be it. They're different kinds of busy, different kinds of Pt issues and problems. Some of our night CVICU nurses decided to try days and quickly went back to nights. The day nurse who tried nights wondered why she hadn't done it before as it solved most of her child care issues.
    The shifts are different. And a busy night is different from a busy day. You just can't compare apples and green beans.
  6. by   night owl
    The thing is, day shift has done their share of nights by filling in when night nurses go on vacation and they know how hard it is on nights with less staffing and yet they still manage to dump many things on nights. Now the evening shift is a whole different ballgame. Their game where I work, is to stretch a problem as far as they can so they can push it off onto the night shift, or they'll say, "Leave it for the day shift." Obviously they just don't want to be bothered. Take last night for instance...A resident had an order for an IV, D5W.45NS. Resident pulled it out. (very confused) There were no orders to d/c it. No attempt was made to restart it. The only comment was, "Leave it for the day shift because he's going to pull it out any way." We couldn't do that, so now we have to waste an hour trying to restart this IV. Three attempts were made, kept infiltrating. The fourth attempt was successful. Resident slept all night, but did manage to pull it out around around 9am. I know b/c I worked OT 'til noon. HN was making out an incident report. Stupid things like that just pizz me off. Another story...resident c/o at 8pm his catheter being blocked b/c he now has to void and can't. Evenings stretches the problem by avoiding the resident... Is that neglect??? Now it's 12mn and his call bell is going off and he's pizzed off b/c now he really, really has to go. So right off the bat we have to take care of evenings problems. This happened to the same resident x2 and with the same nurse. The IV incident was with the same nurse also. Our nights wouldn't be as busy if OTHER shifts didn't leave their problems for us to correct. We are already busy as it is, but please, don't make it worse for us. Then they have the nerve to say, "It's so hard on nights!" and yet they continue to dump. It's been so busy the last month in the one hall that I work in that I couldn't get a chance to do my monthly summaries. Last week I accidentally went home with the key to the door where our EKG machine is kept. Had to take it back and while I was there, I did the monthly summaries b/c I would have never had the chance to do them otherwise... That's just how busy we've been. Was I rambling/venting??? I'm sorry.
    Last edit by night owl on Apr 29, '02
  7. by   RoxiRN
    Teamwork means that eveyone does their job and DOESN'T leave it for the next person. Even if it means staying past shift change. I have worked many 12-hour night shifts without a break - not even time to go pee. 10 acutely ill (some of them too ill to go to the OR - the dumb orthopods accept them anyway - grrr) patients, with at least 4 or 5, sometimes more, fresh postops - this means q 1 hr respiration and sedation scales on patients who have had spinal-epimorphs, q4h vitals on fresh postops - complete with IVs, drains, foleys, PCAs to clear at 2400 and 0600, , a wack of postop orders and bloodwork to check, and lets not forget about those fresh postop patients themselves, who do not sleep and require q 2 to 3 h turns, who de-Sat and whose Bps crash into their boots. On an ortho surgical ward, patients do not take themselves to the bathroom. This only adds to the workload. And there's nothing like having a fresh postop go sour on you at 0300 when you and two other RNs are alone with 30 acute surgical patients! Oh and lets not forget that strange effect anesthesia seems to have on the elderly (who are the most frequent fliers on ortho) and alcoholics. On top of everything else these people are ripping out their drains (i.e. hemovac), IVs, and foleys! Keep in mind all of this is happenng when I'm alone and the other two RNs are pretty much in the same boat, so can't help.

    Nothing that dayshift brings can come even close to such an experience. On days their are always bodies around to help out if you're short. No such luxury on nights. Don't forget that nights are also responsible for making sure everything is in order. Apparently that includes processing orders that were written on days and left for nights to do. Apparently it also means tidying up after days. If you d/c an IV and/or PCA on days, for heaven's sake take it down and clean up you own mess - WHY DOES ALL THIS GET LEFT FOR NIGHTS!!?? What burns my butt the most though, is when a patient is admitted through ER early in the day and is going to have surgery the next day, and the day staff don't have the decency to start the preop stuff. Oh, yeah, lets leave it for nights! Grrrr.

    On my unit we all work days and night, 2 days, 2 nights, 5 off. But people still get lazy. . .


    BTW - the person who said nights typically don't spend time talking to patient's families - what planet are you on! The shift starts at 1930 - that's prime visiting time! Oh, yes, families call at all hours of the night.
    Last edit by RoxiRN on Apr 30, '02
  8. by   Fgr8Out
    :: politely flicking that ittybittyteensyweensy chip off someones shoulder...giving her a hug and a virtual gift certificate to the Cyber Coffeehouse::

    feel better hon? i sure do!!

    a POX on your coworkers for being so stingy.

    :: laughing WITH you, not at you ::

    Peace
  9. by   Brownms46
    Originally posted by RoxiRN
    Teamwork means that eveyone does their job and DOESN'T leave it for the next person. Even if it means staying past shift change. I have worked many 12-hour night shifts without a break - not even time to go pee. 10 acutely ill (some of them too ill to go to the OR - the dumb orthopods accept them anyway - grrr) patients, with at least 4 or 5, sometimes more, fresh postops - this means q 1 hr respiration and sedation scales on patients who have had spinal-epimorphs, q4h vitals on fresh postops - complete with IVs, drains, foleys, PCAs to clear at 2400 and 0600, , a wack of postop orders and bloodwork to check, and lets not forget about those fresh postop patients themselves, who do not sleep and require q 2 to 3 h turns, who de-Sat and whose Bps crash into their boots. On an ortho surgical ward, patients do not take themselves to the bathroom. This only adds to the workload. And there's nothing like having a fresh postop go sour on you at 0300 when you and two other RNs are alone with 30 acute surgical patients! Oh and lets not forget that strange effect anesthesia seems to have on the elderly (who are the most frequent fliers on ortho) and alcoholics. On top of everything else these people are ripping out their drains (i.e. hemovac), IVs, and foleys! Keep in mind all of this is happenng when I'm alone and the other two RNs are pretty much in the same boat, so can't help.

    Nothing that dayshift brings can come even close to such an experience. On days their are always bodies around to help out if you're short. No such luxury on nights. Don't forget that nights are also responsible for making sure everything is in order. Apparently that includes processing orders that were written on days and left for nights to do. Apparently it also means tidying up after days. If you d/c an IV and/or PCA on days, for heaven's sake take it down and clean up you own mess - WHY DOES ALL THIS GET LEFT FOR NIGHTS!!?? What burns my butt the most though, is when a patient is admitted through ER early in the day and is going to have surgery the next day, and the day staff don't have the decency to start the preop stuff. Oh, yeah, lets leave it for nights! Grrrr.

    On my unit we all work days and night, 2 days, 2 nights, 5 off. But people still get lazy. . .


    BTW - the person who said nights typically don't spend time talking to patient's families - what planet are you on! The shift starts at 1930 - that's prime visiting time! Oh, yes, families call at all hours of the night.
    Geezee RoxiRN....how do you handle 10 pts like that???? Lord I have a hard time dealing with the 8 I have been getting...and just one like those you described sends me nite to HELL!! My Lord....I'm in awe of you and your fellow nurses...
  10. by   mamabear
    Gee, I thought my facility was the only one...
  11. by   mamabear
    Gee, I thought my facility was the only one...
    We never have more than three staff, regardless of how many patients we have or how high the acuity is (are there really places that staff according to acuity)
    Invariably, day shift will come breezing in, wanting to know why this or that did or didn't happen. Because days doesn't start until 0815, it falls upon the night shift (2345 to 0815) to pass the 0800 meds If we get two or three admits, hang it up. Then we get accused of trying to scam overtime.
    True, most of the pts sleep all night. However, it's been my experience that when things go bad on nights they go real bad real fast. On the rare occasion where a day nurse gets pulled to nights, they flounder around, get in our way, and act like they're our bosses .
  12. by   fergus51
    In our facility we rotate between days and nights, and we don't seem to have nearly the same amount of bickering between shifts....
  13. by   Rottie1
    This problem is not unique to nursing, before nursing I was in the military as an aircraft mechanic, and it was the same thing. It isn't just a night shift thing either. Every shift seems to believe that they are the ones that do more work.
    I have worked different shifts in nursing on different units and as it was said prior, each shift has it's own specific demands. We all need to work as a team, I know there will be those that don't think they have to work as hard as others, but what is the priority here? Patient care. NO?
    So regardless of what others are doing, lets get it together for the patient.

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