Ethical question

  1. We had a domestic violence drill at work the other day, I work for a med-surg floor There were real tears, shouting, shoving and very good acting involved. When it was over the nurse taking care of the abused woman was in tears and took her about 30 minutes to regain composure. This was a very good drill, the only thing wrong was that we didn't know this was a drill nor we were informed to be prepared for a drill in domestic violence in advance.
    I have serious questions about the ethics of this process because it put all the staff through unnecessary emotional distress.
    Is this type of unannounced drill use in any other part of the country. I would appreciate your feedback.
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  2. 5 Comments

  3. by   fiestynurse
    I have never heard of "domestic violence" drills. That's what security and the police are for. They didn't tell you that this was a drill!! Were there any actual patients around? I see all kinds of risks in doing a drill such as this. I understand the need to educate health care professionals on domestic violence issues, but I think this is taking it a bit too far.
  4. by   P_RN
    It would seem that you should be given some notice that such a thing is possible. Afterall we get told that sometime there will be a fire or disaster drill, but not necessarily when it will be.

    What would have happened if someone had gotten carried away and really injured someone or been injured themselves?

    Sounds like someone's bright idea for a Master's Thesis to me.
  5. by   WashYaHands
    I agree with feistynurse. Something of that nature needs to addressed by the security staff and police. Whoever authorized that drill was out of line. What a terrible thing to put the staff through. I'm sorry that you and your peers had to go through that. wow.

    Linda
  6. by   WriteStuff
    Bancho,

    I say - OUTRAGEOUS!!

    I could be wrong here, correct me if I am somebody..........BUT, in any facility, "drills" (fire, disaster, etc.)....are first established by POLICY and PROCEDURE, having been written up and approved by "whoever". I'd head for the facility's P & P Manuals and find the one for: "Domestic Violence Drill"....which, if it exists, is part of every new hire's Orientation, or should be.

    Domestic Violence is no "game" and to spring this kind of a "drill" on unsuspecting Staff, patients, family members, visitors and anyone else is pretty sick thinking if you ask me.

    How do they justify this "drill", given there is no policy and procedure in place for guiding Staff in advance of such a possibility? They are damn lucky nobody pulled out a loaded gun, or called the Police, believing it was the real deal!

    I'd be on the phone, in the face of my Manager, DEMANDING to see the Policy and Procedure for this scenario, because it is your Supervisor's responsibility to have educated all Staff on that Unit, if one does exist!

    Follow up, and let us know what you are told. We are in enough of a "war zone" day in and day out, without management creating it for us.

    Just when you think you've "heard everything".........
  7. by   psnurse
    Here I go... disagreeing again. I don't think you should know about drills of any kind in advance. The purpose of them is to test readiness. What you know without having reviewed the policy that week you knew a drill was possible. Afterall, actual emergencies are not going to be announced beforehand. They just happen.

    I do agree that the types of drills and staff responsibilities should be covered in orientation and updated at least annually.

    A domestic violence drill would have been nice before I actually encountered my first domestic violence incident. There have been 3 incidents in my ten years. One incident resulted in a nurse being shot and killed in the stairwell by her estranged husband. She was courageous and selfless enough to leave the care area when she saw him coming, but this may have also contributed to her untimely demise. No one knew what was going on until it was too late.

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