No more visitors EVER! - page 6

Well I had a hell of a night in OB, a sullen rude labor patient even after the epidural, and whining about keeping the moniter belts on- yes they HAVE to be there. Her SO pissed and moaned about it... Read More

  1. by   Mattigan
    We have a playroom for inpatients (I'm Peds Unit) and people come by and drop off kids so they can go upstairs to see Uncle Whoever without having to be distracted by kids. We never catch them because we are in rooms busy but we go by and see these kids jumping off bookcases and wrecking all this havoc. Called Social Work once and reported abandoned children- got in bunches of trouble.
  2. by   deespoohbear
    Fab4fan- You are right in the middle of Amish country! We have our fair share here in Northern Indiana. The Amish around here don't have tops on the buggies (they are that conservative). You are right, some of them are really nice people and very interesting to talk to, but then you have you PIA ones too. They show up at the doctors' offices without an appointment and expect to be seen, NOW. Oh, and their 6 children need to be seen also. Sometimes they don't get it (but neither does the "English" people at times). For those of you not familar with the Amish culture, they call people who are not Amish "English' people. The Amish can be an interesting group of people to learn about though.
  3. by   canoehead
    I have come to a new conclusion re PITA visitors. They have hired us to protect the safety and health of their loved one by bringing them to the hospital, and to use our experience to do that. If my experience tells me that I cannot dodge 5 visitors during a resuscitation and still concentrate on what I have to do then my best judgement tells me to get those visitors out. Because the health of my pt is a priority over their concern or hurt feelings. And if after explaining politely why etc...they do not agree, and refuse to give me the space I need I will call the police if I need to- if only to come and talk with them, or to guard the door. Frankly I don't care what pr this brings the hospital- safety should be their prime concern too.

    I also have a feeling that all the turkeys in the community have been talking, and saying "well just don't leave...what are they going to do?" We need to take a stand, and it may only take a police officer showing up at the hospital and seen in close consultation with the nurses to make them ease off enough to give us space to work.
  4. by   Jenny P
    Working in ICU, I have used the line that "I'm sorry, but my job is to keep your loved one alive. Your presence here right now at the bedside is interfering with my job. Do you wish to remain here and put his life in jeopardy, or will you please step out?" Another phrase I've used is "your loved one is ill, and since you people are obviously visiting amongst yourselves, please step out to the waiting room so the pt. can sleep." I am courteous when I say these things and make them aware that my job IS THE PATIENT, and I only have the pts.' welfare in mind when I'm in the room with them.

    A family member once complained to the doc about my "hurting" the pt. when I boosted him up in bed (pt. was 3 days post-op and could boost himself quite well with his feet). She also complained that I kicked her out of the room (6 bed ICU room with 2 pts. coding and 2 fresh surgicals, and she pulls a nurses' chair over to the crowded bedside and pulls out a cribbage board and expects to play cards with hubby while we are trying to code pt. in the next bed). The doc reported me to my HN because pt. said he wanted to go AMA because of me. Once the doc knew who I was, he told the pt. right out that he lied! End of the story: pt. referred other friends to us for surgery!!! Go figure!!!
  5. by   RoadRunner
    Originally posted by canoehead
    And if after explaining politely why etc...they do not agree, and refuse to give me the space I need I will call the police if I need to- if only to come and talk with them, or to guard the door.
    We need to take a stand, and it may only take a police officer showing up at the hospital and seen in close consultation with the nurses to make them ease off enough to give us space to work.
    Did you ever call the police??? How did it work out???
    Just curious...
  6. by   canoehead
    Never had the guts, as I know it would be "my fault" in the end for not having found a diplomatic way to ease them out. Unfortunately I don't have endless time to explain the same thing to 5 different people, and can't explain and moniter a critical pt at the same time. Besides some visitors are determined to get their way- and that's their priority- to be able to say they MADE the nurse let them in.

    Next time we have a staff meeting I will suggest bleachers for the new bigger labor rooms so that we will have a spot to put family that is out of the way and yet they can get a really good look at the woman's hoo-hoo as she strains to push the baby out.

    But seriously, I am sooo frustrated with visitors that interfere with my ability to do my job, and the Monday morning quarterbacking of admin that thinks if only I had THEIR tact I would have had the family eating out of my hand.
  7. by   fab4fan
    Originally posted by canoehead
    Never had the guts, as I know it would be "my fault" in the end for not having found a diplomatic way to ease them out. Unfortunately I don't have endless time to explain the same thing to 5 different people, and can't explain and moniter a critical pt at the same time. Besides some visitors are determined to get their way- and that's their priority- to be able to say they MADE the nurse let them in.

    Next time we have a staff meeting I will suggest bleachers for the new bigger labor rooms so that we will have a spot to put family that is out of the way and yet they can get a really good look at the woman's hoo-hoo as she strains to push the baby out.

    But seriously, I am sooo frustrated with visitors that interfere with my ability to do my job, and the Monday morning quarterbacking of admin that thinks if only I had THEIR tact I would have had the family eating out of my hand.
    Bleachers...OMG...that's funny
  8. by   zyanya
    Well, I can't say I've been in an acute care setting in 5 years but quite frankly, I'm appalled reading this... Have things changed so much that this is justified? Granted this is a nursing board and rants are expected...

    I came here after running a Google search on the Nurse Reinvestment Act and decided to peek at these boards and I sat here with my jaw hanging. I am perfectly appalled at the attitudes here. And this a public place where anyone can read this! Quite a few of the situations described were handled well and I understand the frustration but the image this sends out is horrid!!!

    5 years ago I worked in an ICU with no visiting hours. In theory, it was 7A-7P but often visitors were in attendance whenever they choose to be, so I know what lots of visitors were like 5 years ago, and quite well.

    Has anyone here ranting so much thought to give a first time visitor a tour? Explain a little of what's going on?

    OK, your husband is on a breathing machine because he isn't breathing well enough on his own to keep his body going. Don't panic if it beeps, he may just be coughing and the machine doesn't quite know how to take it. (fold back sheet gently and show central venous line) He's getting his fluids and medications through this line. One line is simply giving him fluids. One line has a medicine to keep his blood pressure up. I'll be coming in to add in medicine for infection and to keep all these medicines from tearing up his stomach. (show ECG monitor lines and pulse ox monitor) These pieces of equipment allow us to see how he's doing even when we aren't in the room. If things start beeping, we'll be coming in to see what's going on. Feel free to ask someone running around outside if it's okay if no one appears. What we're watching for is signs that his infection is going away. It may look worse soon. When the antibiotics start working, they will kill the bugs making him sick but when the bugs die, they release more poison so it may look worse. There's always the possibility that we haven't started this in time; he may not make it and that's one reason that I think you should be here. He may not respond to you but research has shown tht the sense of hearing is one remains longer than anything else. Stay here and talk to him. If something goes wrong, we need to be able to get to all this equipment. There's a chair over there where you can sit while I do what needs to be done. If something goes terribly wrong, a lot of people are going to come in here and we may ask you to leave; please trust that we will do everything we can to help him if this happens...

    Takes 5 minutes....

    Sure, some families are annoying but they are also human, they are afraid and they are helpless in the face of the potential death of a loved one. Sometimes "gawkers" come in but by performing this simple ritual, you often gain the support of someone within the family who will call the shots for you. They can tell the other family members and visitors where to sit, when to leave, when to be there. Sometimes, you have to pick a more aggressive family member to performt his function but it works well.

    You'd be amazed what it does for your reputation both in the unit and with families. I've had patients code on MY shift and been the only nurse not threatened (very dramatically, I might add) with a lawsuit.

    This may be more appropriate to a critical care or end of life discussion rather than one on L&D, which I will admit I am ignorant of, and I'm sure some of you do this for your patients and their visitors, which is great.
    I'm sure I managed to peg a rant session and not the typical conversation among nurses nowadays..
    At least I hope so because this thread in general sounds like McDonald's cashiers *****ing about people ordering McWhineBurgers and not like professional nurses. I'm also quite certain my comment will make me an object of derision on this forum very quickly but I don't f******g care!! Have some compassion! And don't forget you represent ALL of us when you speak this way. I ENJOYED many of my patient's families and laughed and cried with them, depending on the situation.

    If anyone not involved in nursing and is reading this, pleas ebe aware that we do not all hold this disdain for visitors and for all nursing students reading this, take my word for it, you'll be glad you did.

    Grrr!
  9. by   RyanRN
    Well slap the dog and spit in the fire!!!

    What makes you think each and every explanation (very nicely written, BTW) HASN"T been tried with family and visitors? I think the gist here is that even AFTER we've gone through this litany we then are asked to repeat the process again and again and again at someone else's convenience, never ours. We do explain it to the wife, the sister, the two kids, the uncle, the neice, the paster, the neighbor, and the bowling partner. Then we all do realize the need to reinforce so much information during such a stressful time , so we start all over again! All this, since you haven't been at the bedside in the last 5 years and might not know (???), and we are severely understaffed, often having three and in my hospitals infinite wisdom, FOUR critical patients. Can we afford to make a mistake, No! Do we have to prioritize, Yes! Are visitors being taught to demand more by the media, Yes. Do each and every one of us have to make decisions about a patients care and/or rights of the family to visit , Yes!

    Did you actually read the stories here, it's not just 'annoying' families, it's downright inapporpriate and DANGEROUS behavior we are speaking about. You are taking the wrong people to task I fear.

    There is nothing wrong whatsoever with the public reading anything written on this board. They need to hear both sides of the debate to make an informed decision too. We GET to ***** (like a MacDonalds hamburger flipper, thanks) and this IS the place to do it. What you seem to be asking is that we shove the truth under the rug because it's not pleasant to hear. Management tells us that all the time, we are used to that angle. Too bad, it needs to be said.

    Our patients come FIRST and I am not afraid to let anyone, family, visitor, managment or the Pope know that in no uncertain terms. And some people just don't get it. Now, maybe they will.


    (HI FAB4FAN, yeah, I got a kick out the bleacher visual too, LOL)
    Last edit by RyanRN on Aug 9, '02
  10. by   bagladyrn
    May I respectfully suggest that you get out of your ivory tower and back to floor nursing for about a year, then see if your opinion has changed? I don't suggest that you ask the floor nurses wherever you work, as you do not sound like the type of person who is open to listening to others vent their problems.
  11. by   canoehead
    Zyanya, yes I explained in my situation for 30min why the pushing /delivery stage is critical and that things can go wrong very quickly with both mom and baby and sometimes both, that mom will have her butt open to the world and perhaps would prefer privacy (visitors answer, "she won't care") and had actually stated her wishes as to who she wanted in the room already (not the 7 people that kept going in and out). Everyone was welcome to stay before pushing, and once stabilized and cleaned they could come visit afterwards. But during the critical stage I needed the area with equipment, moniters, access to assist sterile doc, clear. And while bagging a baby, or treating a hemorrhage I can't treat the crisis and explain at the same time (I am just not superhuman!). But would be glad to do so once everyone was stabilized.

    Everything was explained at least twice to each of the 7 visitors. And what happened? We went to section, had a baby needing bagging, CPR, transfer to larger facility, and a mom who had a pp hemorrhage on the table. And the family was peeking through the cracks in the OR doors, but being in the middle of a code I didn't have time to explain again why the mom's privacy was important, or why nosing up to the door could result in serious injury if someone came running through it in search of some piece of equipment.

    So tell me, what ELSE was there to do to make this family more comfortable? And when you hear them mimicking your explanation out in the hall (proving they heard and understood) what would YOU do?
  12. by   fab4fan
    Originally posted by RyanRN
    Well slap the dog and spit in the fire!!!

    What makes you think each and every explanation (very nicely written, BTW) HASN"T been tried with family and visitors? I think the gist here is that even AFTER we've gone through this litany we then are asked to repeat the process again and again and again at someone else's convenience, never ours. We do explain it to the wife, the sister, the two kids, the uncle, the neice, the paster, the neighbor, and the bowling partner. Then we all do realize the need to reinforce so much information during such a stressful time , so we start all over again! All this, since you haven't been at the bedside in the last 5 years and might not know (???), and we are severely understaffed, often having three and in my hospitals infinite wisdom, FOUR critical patients. Can we afford to make a mistake, No! Do we have to prioritize, Yes! Are visitors being taught to demand more by the media, Yes. Do each and every one of us have to make decisions about a patients care and/or rights of the family to visit , Yes!

    Did you actually read the stories here, it's not just 'annoying' families, it's downright inapporpriate and DANGEROUS behavior we are speaking about. You are taking the wrong people to task I fear.

    There is nothing wrong whatsoever with the public reading anything written on this board. They need to hear both sides of the debate to make an informed decision too. We GET to ***** (like a MacDonalds hamburger flipper, thanks) and this IS the place to do it. What you seem to be asking is that we shove the truth under the rug because it's not pleasant to hear. Management tells us that all the time, we are used to that angle. Too bad, it needs to be said.

    Our patients come FIRST and I am not afraid to let anyone, family, visitor, managment or the Pope know that in no uncertain terms. And some people just don't get it. Now, maybe they will.


    (HI FAB4FAN, yeah, I got a kick out the bleacher visual too, LOL)
    Now that has to be the funniest expression I have heard in a long time...I actually laughed out loud when I read it.

    And hey, if you don't like the way this BB sounds, don't read it!! I personally don't care if any alyperson reads this stuff. Maybe one of them will b e enlightened enough to get a clue that nurses are fed up.

    And how presumptuous to think that many of us have not already tried the bend over backwards approach to appeasing visitors. People today are not like they were 17y ago when I graduated. Rudeness is the order of the day...he who yells loudest gets taken care of first.

    People come here to vent in a safe place; I for one am not infavor of anyone feeling like he/she should have to be afraid to speak his/her mind because of "the public." It's a nursing BB; if a layperson if offended by what's here...too bad, it's not a web site for non-nurses to begin with.

    Slap the dog and spit in the fire...LOL!
  13. by   nimbex
    ZYANA... may I brew you a pot of coffee and order some flowers?

    -Visitor with child, leaves 7 year old in CCU with a non responsive patient and goes to Burger King for about 30 minutes... THen threatens to sue me for calling police to pick up the abandoned child.

    -I'm coding a patient room 1, family from room 2 opens the curtain and stands there shouting "excuse me", when we look up I say "excuse us, give some privacy, close the curtain" family responds "mom wants her sleeping pill" I respond "in an emergency here I'll get it soon" Visitor responds "mom wants it NOW" ... yes I responded "Get OUT and close the curtain"

    -9 church "family members" sneak into the ICU room, when I go to open the CLOSED CURTAIN I find all nine of them discussing how terrible the patient looks, there's no way she'll survive and decide to pray over her!!!! Vented patient with tears pouring out(ALERT) now with a heart rate of 150!!!!!! You all need to leave and no she is not going to die, she's doing quite well is my response, please leave now... "How dare you tell us to leave in the middle of prayer!" is their response... THEY REFUSE TO LEAVE and I'm forced to call security!!!!

    -Family member shows up drunk and starts arguing the care being given, "You just sedated her so she won't call you.. you just don't want to work", (IV pump malfunctioned..) " Why don't you get a real nurse who knows what to do..."

    -Had an unstable pt. on IABP, Vent, temp. pacer maxed on all drips, about to code. Family brings 4 year old in. I state there are too many lines and equipment for a child in here, pt. is too unstable please remove child. Family starts yelling discrimination saying it's visiting time and I'm being unreasonable. I leave to call supervisor for help... hear a crash.. the child got tangled up in the IV lines and tripped.. SWAN pulled half way out !!! Mom doesn't understand gravity of what has occured and it takes the supervisor to calm both me and the mom and removes them. PT ok though most importantly.

    -My all time favorite. No visitor sign posted on door, curtain closed, the visitors just open the curtain and find a naked patient being given a bath or a procedure going on.

    What does it take for the PATIENT not the visitor to be the prioity!


    That's what this thread is about, excellent nurses CARING for their patients despite numerous obstacles from visitors.

    Not nurses who lack the ability to instruct and include visitors in the patients care

    THat coffee should be done brewing now, so am I



    :imbar :imbar

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