Just where do our services end?

  1. Time to time, I have patients who ask me to wake them at a certain time. Now recently, I have gotten calls from their family members who are AT HOME asking me to call them for certain things, like call and wake them at 7 or call when the doctor gets there. Excuse me? I have enough to keep me more than busy with patients, charting, etc. that it's hard enough to keep up with scheduled meds that at different hours than the regularly scheduled meds. Now families are expecting wake up calls at home?
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  2. 27 Comments

  3. by   sunnyjohn
    Wake up calls?

    This aint' no Howard Johnson's!!!!!

    What do they do when you calmly explain to them you are unable to do this and that they should contact the doctor at his/her office to ask to be contacted if they so wish??

    *Sunny wondering if she can direct her future patient's family's to Walmart for clocks and Wendy's for dinner*
  4. by   SCRN1
    Well, with the one from last night for example, I told him, "sir, I'm sorry but that is a very busy time and I won't have time to make calls". He said, "well, you can call at 5 or 6. It doesn't matter. Just call me." I then explained that I could not promise to do that because that there just isn't time. He still kept on & on. Finally, I told him a patient was needing me and I had to go. Before hanging up, he said he'd talk to me in the morning when I call. Needless to say, I got a new admission at 5 a.m., had to pre-op a couple of patients, give 6 a.m. meds, write report, finish charting, and more. So, he did not get that call he expected from me. And get this...he can't even drive. So it's not like he was wanting to wake up to get to the hospital to talk to the doctor. Besides, the doctor came before that 7 a.m. wake up call would have been.

    As to the ones who want me to call when the doctor arrives, I tell them they will have to come to the hospital and wait on the doctor if they want to talk to him/her. They sometimes slip in and out while we're in with other patients and don't even know they've been there. I also explain they may show up at any time and I don't know what time to tell them to be there.
  5. by   ZootRN
    I had family members demanding that I will call a doctor because they want to talk to him. I can imagine going thru the answering service and paging doc, so they can tell him that their mom is constipated. People are so self centered, its not even funny sometimes.
  6. by   purplemania
    Learning to say "No" is so important to your sanity. Always smile, of course.
  7. by   Soup Turtle
    Maybe you should call to wake the family up at 7:00 if the family calls to remind you to wake them up at, say, 6:45? Seriously, that's nervy!
  8. by   barbyann
    I may have to wipe the pt's a$$ but I put my foot down when the family wants theirs wiped too.
  9. by   MedSurgeNewbie
    I am amazed at people theese days I just had family request my home phone for when I was off.. umm yea
  10. by   charebec65
    mmmmmm, my home number? 123-456-7890

    I do pediatric homecare and do predominantly 1 patient. We have each other's phone numbers but our situation is a bit different.
  11. by   MedSurgeNewbie
    Quote from charebec65
    mmmmmm, my home number? 123-456-7890

    I do pediatric homecare and do predominantly 1 patient. We have each other's phone numbers but our situation is a bit different.
    with that situation I compleatly get why, its so cool that you can do home health with peds - I have a ton of respect for you.. I cant phathom working on kids it would scare the heck outta me
  12. by   Batman24
    That is really nervy. You aren't an answering service or his secretary. Yeesh.
  13. by   DeLySh
    Do their employers call them every morning to make sure they get to work, too? Seriously ... get an alarm clock.



    DeLySh
  14. by   RNsRWe
    Quote from SCRN1
    Time to time, I have patients who ask me to wake them at a certain time. Now recently, I have gotten calls from their family members who are AT HOME asking me to call them for certain things, like call and wake them at 7 or call when the doctor gets there. Excuse me? I have enough to keep me more than busy with patients, charting, etc. that it's hard enough to keep up with scheduled meds that at different hours than the regularly scheduled meds. Now families are expecting wake up calls at home?
    I haven't really had that scenario, but the one in which the family demands that the doctor call them the moment he arrives, well, that's a common one. And I tell them I can't promise that he'll do that, or even when he'll arrive. Or, frankly, IF he'll arrive; sometimes an associate goes if it's a weekend or whatever. I don't schedule my time with patients around what the doctor does or doesn't do.

    I tell them I'll be happy to place a note on the pt's chart for the doctor to see when he sees the chart. But I have no way of knowing if he'll see that note before or after he's visited pt, etc. Family is usually not thrilled knowing that I'm not hovering in the doorway of the room, waiting for the doctor myself, but I always manage to get it through

    The other common request is "Make sure Mom's Doctor does xxx for her". Nope, can't do that either...Doc might want to do that for Mom, might not, but I sure am not going to tell him that he needs to do that because Mom's Niece (who is an EMT, so she knows this stuff) wants it done. I tell the family member that if they have certain requests, they are going to need to speak to the doctor themselves, even if that means calling THEIR MD'S OFFICE and waiting for a return call...themselves

    You know, reading back over this, I wonder if these kind of demands come from the thinking that we're the doctors' personal aides, personal secretaries...?? That's gotta be it.
    Last edit by RNsRWe on Feb 23, '07

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