Nurse Impersonators - page 2

:( Am I the only one who resents the "nurse impersonators" who abound in the health care field? Everyone who works at a doctor's office or in a hospital wears scrubs and seems to pass... Read More

  1. by   Huganurse
    ...
    Last edit by Huganurse on Jun 30, '02
  2. by   stevie b
    Pandora,
    As far as I know,the MA's in a Dr. office do things like vitals,weights,lab draws etc. I dont know what would prompt the MD to assign the RN as an aide to an MD. I know I dont think I could do that,but, I dont have any personal office experience except as a patient.
    And Susy,I have to say Im not sure if the ANA did get involved or not,because I have to plead ignorance about most of the ANA's dealings.Im not exactly sure what they are all about,but I will(whenI get some extra time) pull up some archive threads and educate myself.
  3. by   stevie b
    Typo,


    I meant "an aide to the MA' sorry guys,Im still awake after a 12 hr p-a shift.
  4. by   Huganurse
    "I get your point about the hats though... from my point of view Being a Male I get mistaken for a MD all the time, even after I have repeatedly introduced myself as an RN, it's kind of funny really...Or I get the old "So when do you plan on going to medical school?" "


    I am not a Male nurse, however, I also get mistaken for the Doc. I think it is how I present myself. In a most professional and knowledgable way possible. It happens more often when I don my tailored cut 3/4 length(about to the knee in length) white lab jacket over my scrubs. Even the other nurses raze me about it saying I look like a Doc. I'm not trying to be a Dr, just the nurse that I am, and I have the right to wear that jacket anytime I like. I started wearing it in nursing school, then in home care. I have several and I wear them at the hospital. Maybe that is what we need to do to differentiate ourselves from non nursing staff (The 3/4 length white jacket). If people get us nurses confused with Drs that is better than kitchen staff getting mistaken for nurses! These type jackets just look professional to me. What do you all think?? Care to join in?
    Last edit by Huganurse on Jun 30, '02
  5. by   pandora
    Thanks Stevie B. Have yourself a good, long sleep now. You deserve it.
  6. by   Peeps Mcarthur

    I wonder if they would all like to impersonate the mandatory overtime, impossible pt loads, stringent guidelines.........etc,etc.

    I'm not yet a nurse, but once I am you can bet your a** they won't be pulling that crap around me for too long.

    I've experienced the same opportunity because of a shirt and tie or a 3/4 length labcoat as a respiratory therapist(I was really CRTT).
    I was called nurse, DR, PT....you name it.
    Nurses are just as guilty!
    It is routine.........YOU ALL DO IT.........to call all respiratory personell RT(as in therapist) or call all personell respiratory tech(as in CRTT).
    One is a technician, CRTT. One is a therapist, RT. The credentials for RT are much more difficult to obtain(at least ten years ago when I was on the floors) and this makes them feel disrespected.

    Check it out. Listen a few times when respiratory is addressed. you'll be amazed to find out thier true identities!
  7. by   mattcastens
    This is quite the interesting thread! It seams that a lot of us feel the same way. While returning to caps is totally impractical (and for us guys, a little wierd), someone mentioned in a previous post about badges and emblems for EMTs, Police, etc.

    What if only nurses were allowed to wear such an emblem? I'm thinking of like a white warm-up scrub jacket with a cadeuseus and a big RN or LPN on the arm. I kind of like the idea, in fact ... I just might see if I could make one for myself.

    I do think that maybe part of the problem is the leeway that nurses have gotten in terms of scrubs. While I realize everyone likes their "individuality", perhaps a return to "uniform" is in order. The police, fire and EMTs do it and (again) they are always recognized.

    I also realize that this is dangerously close to past threads where I have promoted the idea of uniform uniforms and have gotten my naughty-bits chewed off, so have at it......
  8. by   Huganurse
    I just can't seem to stay off this thread. I just found this on a thread and thought I'd share it with you.

    "Gee wiz. I logged on to ask how anyone copes with night shift, when I found this thread. I have been working nights for 3 months now. Fortunately we have a great group of professionals, CNA and Nurses."

    Are CNA's professionals??? I had never considered them as such but when nurses see them as professionals then why wouldn't they be classified as nurses, if they are professionals.

    This is an area of our nursing profession that we must addressand solve. We need to put a stop to non professionals and non nurses passing themselves off as nurses. But, first we must start at the ground level. Nurses need to dress the part, walk the walk and talk the talk. (I cringe when I see a RN walk onto the unit with hair in a mess, wrinkled cloths and reaking of perfume or worse yet, using profanity in general conversations). We need to report all occurances of impersonating nature to our state board. We need to be proactive as we can be to get the respect we deserve in our nursing profession.
    I still think the 3/4 white jacket is a good idea.
  9. by   Q.
    I like the fun scrubs, but like I said, I would definitely give them up in order to properly identify us.

    How about also making it a point to call your state board when you witness impersonation. I believe impersonating a licensed nurse is a felony...is it not? Perhaps if the ramifications of impersonating a nurse were more severe and not so rewarded, people would be less inclined to do it.
  10. by   babynurselsa
    I just had this very discussion with a pediatrician who moonlights in our NICU. She is part of the same group practice that my childrens pediatician belongs to. I told her how offended i was as a nurse and as a patient to be called by the "Triage Nurse" and when I got to the office to find out that this person was a MA.
    We discussed this at great length. Maybe as far oss the office situation goes this is where we can start. Have a heart to heart with your Doc and let him know how you feel about staff being misrepresented. To take this a step further maybe we should encourage our state nursing boards to address this issue.
  11. by   Q.
    Babynursechelsea:

    You raised some good points but there are many other underlying issues with this I think.

    For starters, at my clinic it seems that the physicians who are the most outspoken are the ones who actually respect the MAs more than the nurses. And I think this comes with ignorance about what makes a nurse a nurse. The committee who wants to pair us with an MA as her assistant values the pyschomotor skills of a nurse more than what actually constitutes a nurse, such as the teaching, the evaluation, the whole nursing process and diagnosis. To most people, the dummy monkey skills that a nurse does is more important than the nurse's REAL skills, which are usually unmeasurable and difficult to describe. So naturally the physicians value the MA more because they are doing vitals, rooming patients, etc. Most of the MAs don't even do vitals!!

    I think once nursing as a profession is understood it will make it easier for non-nurses to understand what the true skills of a good nurse are. And let me tell ya, they ain't injections!

    To the poster who questions why a CNA can't be called a nurse - THEY ARE NOT A NURSE. Plain and simple.
  12. by   Teshiee
    You are so right! I worked in L&D as a unit secretary. We all wore scrubs and I was always mistaken as a nurse because I would go that extra mile and help those laboring moms. I am a nurse now and I can't stand the way non nurses try to fake like they are nurses. You ask them a question they wouldn't have a clue in the world. And as for that man bleeding like that I would have torn her a new a**hole. Just plum trifling. I think regardless what your title when you are in the health profession everyone should act professional because you just don't know who you may have to help in the long run. Nurses get the worse of the it because the lack of educated individuals. I know our profession is hard but I truly love it. For someone trying to enroach on it is a real disservice to us all.
  13. by   colleen10
    Even though I'm not a nurse yet I completely understand why a nurse would be at the least disgruntled by these nurse impersonators.

    As someone who has had experience going into the hospital and clinical setting as a patient, for not only myself but also with relatives, I think that the "impersonators" not only do damage to the nursing professions persona as a whole but also to the general publics trust or lack of trust for the medical field.

    Advertising your position such as Medical Assistant, LPN, or RN - I really don't think that a layperson would understand the increasing degrees of education, knowledge, and experience that is required for each. If a person is sick or concerned about a patient all they want is to talk to a medical professional to get the situation under control and ensure that they are going to be taken care of. If a layperson were to see "Medical Assistant" on a name badge they would probably assume that since it says "Medical" on it that person should be able to offer help. The same way an RN would.

    A "layperson" or someone with little or no background in the medical field would see anyone in scrubs as a person with medical knowledge. Can you imagine a worried and stressed out relative of a patient going up to a janitor, secretary, or MA(dressed in scrubs) asking pertinent medical questions and then that janitor or secretary trying to answer them? Can you imagine what that relative must be thinking! Either they will believe what ever the secretary or janitor is saying and later be dismayed when they find out the information they were given was incorrect. Or, if they catch on that the person they are speaking with doesn't have that much knowledge in the medical field they will think "What kind of place have I brought my relative to? The nurses don't know anything!"

    This problem is more far reaching than I think "impersonators" give it credit.


    As for the man with the serious cut who went to his regular doctor's office... Last year I was sent to a new Primary Care Physician because of insurance changes. When I went to the doctor's office to have a case of poison ivy taken care of I was instructed that if I should ever have any type of "Emergency Situation" I should go to the doctors' office rather than the nearest ER because the doctor's would see me faster than waiting around in the busy ER. Unfortunately, for this particular gentlemen it doesn't seem to have made much of a difference.

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