Husband appaled when I chose to do nothing - page 3

Hi everyone, I'm more or less writing to see if anyone else here has had a similar situation. When out with my hubby last weekend, we went to the movies and when we walked through the side... Read More

  1. by   kaseysmom
    Just a quick opinion question. If you were witness to an accident and there was a victim who was bleeding profusely and needed CPR or some sort of hands on care (obviously) - would you be quick to do it, or would you refuse?? Reason for the question is that I have been witness to several accidents - although I have never had to do CPR or anything of the sort - but when I think back, had CPR been needed and the victim were bleeding...I have a feeling that I wouldn't want to do it. Maybe that's selfish of me - but I have a small child, if I didn't have gloves or a mask for this person - I don't think that I would want to subject myself to any diseases (although I do it every day at work just in a different way since gloves and such are at my disposal) that may be terminal knowing that I am the caregiver for my child..any opinions??
  2. by   apaisRN
    I can do CPR and I can defibrillate if an AED is available - otherwise, as an ICU nurse, I am pretty useless in the community. I stopped once when a cyclist was hit by a car near my house. He looked bad, pale and one arm was white and cold. Someone who claimed to be an EMT was yelling at him to stay awake. He was talking back, though distressed. I went to feel his pulse and realized that my watch didn't have a second hand. I kind of giggled internally and thought, well, at least it's strong and regular. Then the ambulance arrived and I left. I think I would have stayed if the ambulance had taken longer. I might not have identified myself as a nurse but the guy did look pretty bad, although ABCs were grossly all right. I wouldn't have felt okay leaving.

    The original situation - the girl had an airway, was breathing and clearly had a pulse. There were no s/s of distress besides her sitting with her head down. The ambulance was coming with EMTs who are better trained in community response than I. What could I, or another nurse have done? Held back her hair if she vomited? Her boyfriend can do that. I think the OP's actions were entirely appropriate. I think my non-medical hubby would agree, because he is the son and brother of doctors. He understands that a medical career demands a great deal from a person and when they're off, they just want to be off. I think he would trust my assessment if I told him the reasons I believed the girl was all right.
  3. by   CHATSDALE
    in the field you do not have any particular equipment you might need to assist so basically you are on par with a red cross certified first aid person..[not really but you know what i mean]

    so if you can make a differance be a good citizen and help...if a person is bleeding to the extent that they might go into shock b4 ambulance can get there i would take a chance on bloodborne and try to staunch the bleeding...if you are in a city you are minutes away from skilled assistance..if you are out on the interstate 50 miles from nowhere you may be the differance between life and death....

    basically i agree with those who say that if there are others giving assistance and the injured person looks stable enough to wait for ambulance there is no call for you to burst in like a rhino and take charge
  4. by   barefootlady
    We may be nurses 24/7 but we don't have to do nursing 24/7. You did good
    in your assessment of the situation, so don't let hubby put you down or make you feel bad.
  5. by   twinmommy+2
    Quote from bonemarrowrn
    I used to be an EMT too. Hubby is a paramedic (that's how we met :blushkiss ). We used to stop for everything!! We were so corny. Now, not so much. And honestly, how much can you do in that situation.

    Interesting story: I was driving in a parking lot (i think it was snowy). Two old ladies were not paying attention, and turned their heads and saw me coming (i saw them and was not planning on hitting them). One of them startled, and slipped and fell. Call me heartless, but I did not stop. Reason being, I was with my 1 yr old (at the time). How was I going to be a nurse and a Mommy at the same time? I can't just drop everything to be a superhero. And then, are you stuck there until an ambulance show up?
    I used to stop all the time if someone needed my help or even if they needed to be pushed off the road. One time I (and only me) pushed this truck off the road cause it was stopping traffic on a two lane road (I was an auto parts deliver driver at the time) with the male driver in the seat to steer the damn truck! Now a days, I usually have the kids in the car and if it looks bad enough I will call 9-1-1 for them but I'm not leaving my kids in the car for anyone.
  6. by   rn/writer
    There are hotdoggers in any occupation. You know the type. They see an accident or a crowd gathering around someone down and they think, "Hot Dawg! Another chance to strut my stuff!"

    As an EMT (15 years), I'm happy to pull up in our rig and find that some capable bystander has been doing effective CPR on a patient who was a witnessed arrest. Or doing correct c-spine or holding pressure on an MVA patient's wounds.

    What I don't relish is dealing with people who either aren't rendering aid properly or who rush in, try to save the day (by doing more than first responder kinds of things), and then fly away to rescue the rest of the world without taking any kind of accountability.

    We were standing by at an adult sporting event. Two players collided and one of them ended up with a dislocated shoulder. The man was in pain but otherwise fine. Out of the stands comes a tall gentleman who identified himself as a doctor. Before we could ask for ID or call med control, this guy pushes past our people, puts his foot against our supine patient, and gives a good yank. Lucky for the patient (and for us), he did pop the shoulder back in place. But we didn't know whether to thank him or strangle him.

    We asked for his ID--gotta document the heck out of this one--but he refused to give it. In fact, he took off for the parking lot. Someone got his plate numbers and, of course, he was from out of state. We called for the sheriff but he was long gone by that time and it wasn't made a priority because he hadn't actually done any harm. Sheesh.

    The patient refused transport, though he did sit out the rest of the game, but we don't know if this man was a gynecologist, a vet, or just a legend in his own mind. My guess is that he was a military medic or something similar and knew what to do but also that he'd be in a heck of lot of trouble for claiming to be more than he was.

    We've had other incidents with pushy docs (I can't think of a time when the offender was a nurse). They don't get the concept that field conditions are not the same as a nice clean ER or treatment room. They don't understand why we're doing or not doing certain things. They're used to calling the shots and having everyone hop to it. And they're hyped up on adrenalin. This is not a good combination.

    What usually works to calm these guys is for us to point out that if they initiate care (beyond first responder level), they have to come in the ambo with us and transfer care to the ER doc. Oh, and we're all operating under his license in the meantime. We've never had one persist beyond that point but if we did, we'd let law enforcement handle him.

    I should mention that we have a paramedic intercept automatically toned out on any life-threatening calls and they can do just about anything worth doing in the field. They are staffed round the clock (we are not) and they usually arrive just a minute or two after we do. Docs might be considered the top of the heap but unless they are ED or critical care docs, they aren't going to know EMS assessment and protocols and their excitement can render them an absolute danger.

    BTW, I'd advise any medical people to carry gloves and face shield (there is one kind that fits in a little package on a key chain) with them everywhere--not to save the world, but to save yourself if you feel the need to help.

    Miranda F.
    Last edit by rn/writer on Feb 4, '05
  7. by   flashpoint
    LOL...I have a pair of gloves and a face mask in both of my vehicles, all of my coats, jackets, etc, and that I just carry around in my pocket of whatever clothes I happen to be wearing...my youngest daughter got a bloody nose yesterday and I pulled the gloves out of my pocket as she came running up to me...she was not amused, but it is such habit...LOL.
  8. by   proudmommielpn
    Got a good one for you. I was with my husband at the funeral of his boss that passed away and it was a standing room only gathering. We got there early and got the last pew at the church and a couple of guys he works with stood behind our pew. The service lasted about an hour and it was almost to the point where the funeral directors come around and excuse you to go up and view for the last time and I heard BAM! and felt the pew shake. I turned around and one of his co workers that was there, wasn't there anymore. He had passed out and busted his head on the pew. I automatically jumped up and went to him. I keep ammonia pellets in my purse because it just seems like people like to pass out around me for some reason. Don't ask why. I grabbed one and then I checked for pulse yada yada yada, no blood, no pump knot so I broke the pellet and put it under his nose, he came around. Then I hear, excuse me lady let the doctor in. I looked at them and said excuse me, I am a nurse and he is ok. I got a little rude but it made me mad. The work was already done and then the MD wanted to take control. Not on me! The funeral kept going right on but of course some people were distracted. The man sat up and then refused to go get checked out he said he was diabetic and he hadn't eaten before the service. Gave him a piece of candy then took him to dinner. The doc didn't volunteer to do that.
  9. by   bluesky
    [quote=ruby vee]hubby and i are both nurses -- and neither one of us wants to get involved when we're off duty! a woman in our church has a propensity for passing out on hot days -- it's happened three times when we were there. on each occaision, there were other medical personnel in the congregation who were eager to help. one young woman vaulted over three rows of pews (in her short dress and high heels) to do the "shake and shout." i kid you not, she was shaking old betsey and shrieking "annie, annie are you ok?" so many parishiners called 911 their switchboard was jammed!
    [quote]
  10. by   Antikigirl
    To the question of if I saw an auto accident if I would get involved, depends on one thing first..and all medics really should know it (EMS knows it!)...scene safety is number one! If it is on a freeway with cars screaming past..no, I am not trained or prepared to take on that risk in a way helpful to the scene..best to get out of the way and let EMS get their quicker. Or if I saw someone bleeding and a police officer nearby...since I don't know the situation...I am not going to get involved.

    But if it is a safe scene (to a degree), then I will get the old gloves and stuff out of my car (yep, I too have quite the first aid kits in all my cars...LOL, it is kinda like the joke, you know you are a medic when your first aid kit has no commerically available products! LOL!), and help till EMS arrives and then ask them if I can be of further assistance. I have had to do this before..a few times...and normally I am asked to help if it is a multiple car accident (but at that time I use their equipment..LOL!).

    Remember scene safety though..if you feel that it is too bloody and you do not have enough universal precaution..that is within your scope to determine risk and make a choice. The only thing to watch for, is in my state it is considered mandatory to help in these cases, so don't even get out of your car if you aren't going to help..drive on past.
  11. by   emeraldjay
    Quote from TriageRN_34
    To the question of if I saw an auto accident if I would get involved, depends on one thing first..and all medics really should know it (EMS knows it!)...scene safety is number one! If it is on a freeway with cars screaming past..no, I am not trained or prepared to take on that risk in a way helpful to the scene..best to get out of the way and let EMS get their quicker. Or if I saw someone bleeding and a police officer nearby...since I don't know the situation...I am not going to get involved.

    But if it is a safe scene (to a degree), then I will get the old gloves and stuff out of my car (yep, I too have quite the first aid kits in all my cars...LOL, it is kinda like the joke, you know you are a medic when your first aid kit has no commerically available products! LOL!), and help till EMS arrives and then ask them if I can be of further assistance. I have had to do this before..a few times...and normally I am asked to help if it is a multiple car accident (but at that time I use their equipment..LOL!).
    I agree completely. Anyone that is willing to render aid at ANY scene should ask themselves "Is the scene safe?"

    This thread reminded me of the one-car MVA that I passed just a couple of days ago. I did what I call a windshield assesment, I saw numerous cars pulled off to both sides of the road, the road was slick from the snow drifted across it two or three inches deep, two people with cellphones and one bus with 2-way radio. Did I get out and add to the fray? Absolutely not, especially after watching one of the occupants climb out of the involved vehicle as I was passing. The fact that I had no equipment in my vehicle to render any sort of aid was another reason; medical control would have had my butt in a sling.

    Yes, scene safety is drilled into the heads of EMS workers from day one. For my area, the mantra of the practical exams was "I have BSI on. Is the scene safe?" The way I see it, an injured provider is just another patient.
  12. by   yannadey
    Last May the hubby & I were returning home to VA from Vegas when an elderly passenger 2 rows down & across from me started having what seem to me an anxiety attack, well the flight attendant asked if there was a doctor or any medical persons on board.( notice she did not asked for a nurse, must be one of those nurse haters) Since I had already made my assessment I did not respond, but 2 doctors & an EMT did & came to the same conclusion as I did. The EMT stayed holding the man's hand the whole flight while the doctors retuned to their seats & their drinks. My husband who was sitting up front kept turning around in his seat to see if I had responded.

    When we got off the plane the first thing he asked was why didn't you help aren't you a nurse.

    My reply to him yes honey I am a nurse & I had already assess the man the moment he walked passed me (I tend to do that to everybody I see, especially the elderly & kids) he seemed nervous, in this post 9-11 world I was thinking hijacker, shoe bomber etc... so I kept an eye on him.
  13. by   si-aid
    Quote from KEVIN88GT
    what is "LAWD"?
    Lawd is Lord with a southern accect!

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