Is this legal?

  1. I work in a University State Hospital in the ICU. I came into work tonight and was handed what looked like a name badge but it just had a number on it. I was informed that it was a nurse tracking device, and will show the person watching the monitors where each and every nurse it at all times, how long we spend in each room and how long we spend in the bathroom. On a monitor next to the EKG monitors, the screen shows each person's initials as they move about the unit, and each time you enter a room a little light goes on outside the door triggered by an infra-red beam. I was told it was introduced to "cut down on noise" so people don't have to yell to find co-workers. I don't believe this and think it's goig to be used against us and some point. I was not informed this was going to be introduced and feel I have no choice but to wear it. Surely this infringes my rights? :angryfire
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  2. 25 Comments

  3. by   nicolel1182
    when i did clinicals at the hospital they had the same thing, i dont think anything of it, it lets people know where you are at when they need you, if you are doing your job correctly, then i dont see the problem

    a quote i learned in school and use it on the field "happy people do not sue" and I take that in many ways than literraly
  4. by   Simba&NalasMom
    Dunno if it's legal or not, but sounds kinda creepy in a very Orwellian way; I suppose if the President can get away with it, so can hospitals.

    On a more serious note, I have a problem being micromanaged and would not choose to work for an employer who insisted on keeping tabs on me like a preschooler, legal or not.
  5. by   Rocknurse
    Quote from nicolel1182
    when i did clinicals at the hospital they had the same thing, i dont think anything of it, it lets people know where you are at when they need you, if you are doing your job correctly, then i dont see the problem

    a quote i learned in school and use it on the field "happy people do not sue" and I take that in many ways than literraly
    I am indeed doing my job properly, but I resent this incessant need to scrutinze nurses who are in effect professional licenced individuals. I am happy in my job but I dislike this "1984" approach to employment.
  6. by   juliebean4u
    This system is pretty common in the Midwest, and I've dealt with it for years. Yes, it is legal, and yes, it can be creepy and punitive. I was fortunate that this was not the case in the facilities I worked in. There was a light above the patient room doorway in the hall, and it actually was convenient to just glance up the hall and know that if the light was green, there was an RN in that room, yellow for LPN, etc. The few horse's butt managers who tried to use it against the staff were often sorry. The staff could retaliate with..''well, why were you just watching the moniter when you could track how busy I was..why not come help?'' Or..''you can see how high-accuity these patients are by the # of times we go in their room, and how long we're in there. How about another nurse?'' :Crash:
  7. by   Rocknurse
    Quote from Simba&NalasMom
    Dunno if it's legal or not, but sounds kinda creepy in a very Orwellian way; I suppose if the President can get away with it, so can hospitals.

    On a more serious note, I have a problem being micromanaged and would not choose to work for an employer who insisted on keeping tabs on me like a preschooler, legal or not.
    I have to agree with you. I wonder what the doctors would say if they were told they had to wear one?
  8. by   Simba&NalasMom
    Quote from Rocknurse
    I have to agree with you. I wonder what the doctors would say if they were told they had to wear one?
    Oh dear, the thought of that really made me giggle! It's absolutely unthinkable that docs would put with that for a second.
  9. by   nicolel1182
    Quote from Rocknurse
    I am indeed doing my job properly, but I resent this incessant need to scrutinze nurses who are in effect professional licenced individuals. I am happy in my job but I dislike this "1984" approach to employment.
    sorry i meant "you" in the general population, not you, yourself. i do think there are nurses or other employees that spend too much time not working and this is a good way to keep up with them, i also think if somebody is looking for you they can find you easier than walking in and out of patients rooms looking for the nurse
  10. by   Simba&NalasMom
    I worked in one facility where the nurses and CNAs used walkie-talkies when they needed to find one another. Worked really well, and nobody felt like they were under a microscope.
  11. by   DAREINGTX
    Quote from Rocknurse
    I have to agree with you. I wonder what the doctors would say if they were told they had to wear one?

    They would say "I don't work for this hospital, i'm not wearin it!!"
  12. by   HappyNurse2005
    Really. THey don't trust us enough to trust we'll do our work/get our job done without being tracked? Thats demeaning, in my opinion. Demeaning that we cant be trusted. see, the tracker thing can say im in room 728. Good. you still have to use the callbell to call into 728 to tell me what you need!

    I prefer the use of cell phones for nurses-you can call them and immediately get ahold of them wherever they are. I've even answered mine in the bathroom!
  13. by   sjrn85
    Quote from nicolel1182
    when i did clinicals at the hospital they had the same thing, i dont think anything of it, it lets people know where you are at when they need you, if you are doing your job correctly, then i dont see the problem

    a quote i learned in school and use it on the field "happy people do not sue" and I take that in many ways than literraly
    Happy people don't sue? That sounds like a line from "Legally Blond." When the circumstances call for it, it is right and just to sue. This may/may not be a situation, but yes, there are times when it is absolutely appropriate to seek redress in court.

    I find this totally ridiculous; this facility is using this as a backdoor to target people. God forbid your personal "GPS" system should show you needed to use the bathroom three times, and took a full half-hour for you meal break!

    (Can't even imagine how this will affect smokers...)
    Last edit by sjrn85 on Dec 18, '05
  14. by   Jon's sis
    I work in two different facilities--one that has that system and one that doesn't. You get used to them and they're nice, actually. A family member want to talk to their mom's nurse? Look on the screen, locate her, call into the room and let her know she's got a phone call. Ours also has an emmergency button that you can use to get help, it tells everyone what room you're in. At my other place of work, you end up peering into rooms and listening in the hallways for voices if you need someone specific. And god forbid, if you have an unhappy famiily that doesn't think mom had enough time spent with her, it can be pulled up (by someone in the company) and shown how many different people spent how much time and when in that specific room. And actually, ours doesn't specifically show anyone in the bathroom, it shows your out of range to be contacted.

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