My experience with foreign-born nurses has been mostly positive, in terms of language barriers anyway. What bugs me is the number of foreign-born MDs who come to Canada for fellowships or residencies, paid for by their governments, who can't string three words together. I can't count the number of times I've explained, reexplained and dumbed down my explanation to one of these folks, and still not have them understand me.
We have a CV surgery resident from a South-east Asian country whose English is very poor. He makes his rounds right at the start of the shift, asks questions I can't answer because I haven't looked at the patient yet, and then rattles off a bunch of orders I'm not allowed to follow, even if I understood them. Then off he goes, coming back between cases to do whatever it was he planned to do, and gets steamed because the pt. hasn't had the pre-procedure tests or sedation.
Recently I had a little six month old ex-prem Trisomy 21 baby with BPD and multiple newly closed VSDs, stable, but prone to snits with any
handling. Joe comes to the bedside and wants to take out the pacing wires. I explain about the kid's snits (in toddler-level language... I'm a peds nurse, aren't I?) and want to give some sedation first, he says the kid doesn't need it and goes ahead and pulls the wires. Knowing what would happen, I had the bagger on the bed by the kid's face.
He snits, I have to bag his heart rate up from 40 and Joe is stunned. He watches me resus the kid for a couple of minutes and then just walks away...:angryfire