Does your hospital ID badge have your first AND last name on it? - page 4

by Deetail

9,787 Views | 49 Comments

seems some people might find that a little invasive when you think about how many people you interact w/ on a personal and impersonal level day in and day out.... Read More


  1. 0
    My first name is on my badge and my last initial. We used to have last names on our badges but our facility changed that. Our last name is on the back by the barcode.
  2. 1
    My last name is on the back (standard for the ED), where it's covered up by the Code reference/"NURSE" placard (which many patients seem unable to read and call me "doctor" anyway, but that's another discussion...). With Facebook, etc being so prevalent, I don't need patients intruding on my personal life, which I try to keep very much separate from my work. I don't take my work home with me, it shouldn't follow me there.

    I find the professionalism argument here as lacking as the argument against wearing color-coded scrubs (though not as bad as the argument calling scrubs "professional-looking"). What makes me a professional is what I know and how I use it, not whether my scrubs are of a standard color or how much of my name appears on my name badge.

    That said, I'm a self-aware straight white male, with all the privilege that goes along with it in modern society, so I tend not to get hung up on issues of personal and professional empowerment.
    joanna73 likes this.
  3. 0
    No. First name, registered nurse. I think this is primarily due to privacy issues for staff.
  4. 0
    Depends on the hospital. My per diem job has my full name. My FT job just has my first name. Despite this, and despite always telling my patients my name when I first see them (Hi, I'm hiddencat, I'll be your nurse today), they still never seem to remember my name, so I don't feel too invaded.
  5. 1
    The way I figure it...if someone wants to do me harm, it does not matter how much of my name is on my badge. In fact, I could have the name "Micky Mouse" on my badge and they would still do harm to me. And I certainly don't see how a patient knowing my last name is somehow a threat to my privacy.
    elkpark likes this.
  6. 5
    Quote from TheSquire

    I find the professionalism argument here as lacking as the argument againstwearing color-coded scrubs (though not as bad as the argument calling scrubs"professional-looking"). What makes me a professional is what I knowand how I use it, not whether my scrubs are of a standard color or how much ofmy name appears on my name badge.

    That said, I'm a self-aware straight white male, with all the privilege thatgoes along with it in modern society, so I tend not to get hung up on issues ofpersonal and professional empowerment.
    That is fine. It does, however, have to do with the general"demeanor" of a number of nurses in regard to professionalism--interms of presentation and what goes with it. Physicians and social workers and other professionals wear ID with first and last name and title. They don't give it a second thought.

    And in working homecare on a PT basis, I agree with the nurse above that shared about the amount of paperwork, which requires repeated signatures with titles--and now the paperwork requires that you also print your name, if you aren't using a program that automatically does this for you. Your name and title gets plastered on many pieces of paper. The client keeps these.

    BTW, the nurses that type in the discharge orders for clients, which are sent home and are also reviewed by the homecare nurse, does so through a computerized system that includes the nurse's full name, such as Mary Smith, RN--some of them may have an educational title, but what is really required is the legal title of licensure. It depends how the person's title was originally put into the system by the user. Anyway, that information goes with the patients.So, those patients or family members now have more than that nurse's first name. Ut oh. What are you going to do? Maybe just work in ICU where you don't directly discharge? If you work in Same Day procedures or ED though, it's the same deal. D/c or disposition orders now are printed out with the dispo'sing nurse's first and last name on it. Now you can go into the program and wipe out your last name and title; but you will get heck for it once someone picks up onit. Legal documentation requires a first and last name and title.

    Your appearance/presentation does label you, so it is important--but it also labels the profession and the organization with which you are associated. In the same way that physicians present and carry themselves affects the general professional view of physicians, so to it applies to nurses.

    Everything is about building trust and confidence and maintaining accountability. That includes clear identification and the confidence to display your full name and title for patients and families to see.

    It is also not different in business. Think of it in this way. Would you handout a business card that only has your first name on it, rather than your fullname and title as well as other pertinent information? My husband is inbusiness, and he and his colleagues represent themselves by first and lastname--always. Their company badges also reflect the same, and of course theirbusiness cards do as well.

    In effect, we are brands that represent ourselves as nursing professionals, andwe represent the profession and institution as well. With professionalconfidence, we give full disclosure to our names, roles, and titles. It alsoconnects our level of function and expectation to those with whom we care orwork.

    Everyone has had to interact with some creepy and stalker-ish folks at one point or another. Certain psych units and such may have to limit things, but generally this isn't typical or even necessary in most places--for physicians or nurses. Listen, if someone wants to find out your full name or more, they can usually do so without too much effort. In practice, there shouldn't be any mystery as to exactly who taking care of the patient and what their title and associated role is. Some places have let the tag issue go at first name; however, that will probably change in most places d/t compliance issues. Also,again, if you d/c anyone, your name is going to be on the patient's paperwork.


    Here's another example. Have you ever been in court where the judge wasintroduced to the court as Judge Jim? Have the attorneys ever been addressed by only their first names? (OK, other than Judge Judy. lol)

    In general, there is no reason to fear representing ourselves as a nurse professionals with full names and titles. It shows confidence, accountability,and professionalism. This is pretty standard in most professional fields.

    Now, other occupations, such has hairdressers or waitresses, may have tags that ID them by first name only--or they many only state their first names uponintroduction. In general, however, they do not subscribe to the same kind of professional model. I suppose they could if they really wanted to do so.

    So really, how much more should those involved with safe and effective healthcare demonstrate the professional model through appropriate labeling?

    Listen, in the general scheme of things, I am not a big label person. I've always believed it was always the person that obviously mattered in terms of thinking and behaving in a professional role. Presentation, however, is a piece of it.

    We are forthrightly saying the following:

    This is my full name and title, and I am confident in showing that name and title, along with the appropriate/associated professional behaviors and functioning, while you or your loved one is in my care.
    It's the same thing physicians and social workers are doing with their IDs.

    That's how I look at it anyway.

    Scrub color is a bit silly to me, b/c it's just herding a particular sub-department--and it needlessly limits people who are already limited interms of what they can wear. In fact, it probably would have never made headway if most nurses and others showed diligence in proper label/ID presentation. In the hospital, no one ever knew who anyone was, b/c people didn't subscribe to reasonable professional disclosure regarding use of ID.
    But scrub color based on department has, in itself, nothing to do with professional accountability identified with the person in the same way appropriate identification does.
    Last edit by samadams8 on Dec 9, '12
    psu_213, NRSKarenRN, flyingchange, and 2 others like this.
  7. 0
    Quote from psu_213
    The way I figure it...if someone wants to do me harm, it does not matter how much of my name is on my badge. In fact, I could have the name "Micky Mouse" on my badge and they would still do harm to me. And I certainly don't see how a patient knowing my last name is somehow a threat to my privacy.
    Have you been on the Internet lately? Ever googled your name? While I'm not among the ones who feel so strongly about not revealing my last name, I can certainly see how some people are concerned about privacy.

    Heck, sometimes I worry about revealing my identity here, and in the many years on this site, I've dwindled my profile info down to a minimum. But if you read enough of someone's posts, you may very well be able to piece together an identity (I know I have).
  8. 4
    I have to disagree with the "right to privacy" argument for Nurses. You're a publicly licensed professional, with that you lose the right to anonymity.
    psu_213, NRSKarenRN, flyingchange, and 1 other like this.
  9. 0
    apts can request theur medical records. get your full name and title and google you. google your first and last name, you can find out plenty. even those not on social networking sites. there are others that have your name, number, address, and marriages or divorces, land/ property bought etc. some of thesr sites charge a small fee. there isnt any annonimity any more.
  10. 1
    Quote from anotherone
    apts can request theur medical records. get your full name and title and google you. google your first and last name, you can find out plenty. even those not on social networking sites. there are others that have your name, number, address, and marriages or divorces, land/ property bought etc. some of thesr sites charge a small fee. there isnt any annonimity any more.
    Can't they also do that with physicians? Should physicians also just use their first names? See, in that regard, the argument doesn't make sense.
    elkpark likes this.


Top