What does Charge Nurse really mean?

  1. Just wondering how people feel....
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  2. 28 Comments

  3. by   Marie_LPN, RN
    It means they're in charge, they're the ones you take inquiries of your problems to.

    On my home floor we have great charge nurses. The floor i've been floating to lately, however, a few of the charge nurses have a Napoleon complex.
  4. by   harley_fan
    I see the charge role being someone who can be used as a resource person for the other nurses. They are the ones who will take charge in the absence of the NM. They help keep the unit running smoothly. I definitely don't see them as my boss, yet for some reason at this hospital that I am at, that is what they refer to themselves as.. "the boss." If that is the case, half of my coworkers are my boss?!?
  5. by   SRbear
    I thought I would share with you what a charge nurse does..cause I are one !
    Well, this is what I do anyway. As soon as my shift starts, I get a cup of coffee, my cigarettes, and mobile phone, and go outside to the smoking area, sit at the table in the nice picnic area, and have the nurses call me with any questions they might have. OK, that is the way I want to do it. Now what I really do..I get report from the night charge nurse, make rounds on all the patients, once in the am, once in the pm, assign all admissions to beds and assign the nurse that will be taking the pt, go to a bed board meeting at 10am-meeting with the supervisor and all other charge nurses, assign lunches, and make out a new assignment at 3pm and again at 7pm, offer my help frequently to the nurses, making sure they are doing ok, deciphering dr. orders,(each RN signs off her own pts. orders), give pain meds, hang IV's, start int's, help pts to bathroom, help with lifting and turning, act as a resource for the nurses and patient care techs, assist doctors, cover the desk for the unit clerk while she is at lunch, sometimes cover for nurses when they are at lunch, handle patient complaints, handle nurses complaints, handle doctors complaints. Basically I do a lot of everything. Oh, and I tell jokes !!! I stronly believe that we must have some fun at work....and humor does help ease things up a bit. Oh yeah, sometimes during all the above, I find time to go to the bathroom !!
  6. by   NursesRmofun
    The charge nurse is the one chosen to organize the workload/assignments and assign the most qualified people to take care of each patient and situation and trouble shoot problems. It is a poorly compensated and thankless job most of the time.
  7. by   Blackcat99
    :uhoh21: The charge nurse is the "Fall guy". If anything goes wrong they always get blamed for it.
  8. by   Tweety
    Maid, order clerk, secretary, housekeeper, who you blame all your problems on if your an LPN, air traffic controller.
  9. by   DNRme
    In the OR where I am frequently in charge it means you are at the bottom of the hill waiting to be hit with whatever rolls down.
  10. by   unikuelady
    SR Bear said it all for me. Ditto Also don't forget "fixing" what the NM screwed up! Making sure there is staffing for the next shift.
  11. by   smackRN
    Hmm, so what extra orientation, if any, did you all have in preparation for this?
  12. by   teeituptom
    Major Headache
  13. by   SRbear
    Let me think....orientation?..................NONE. I get the grand total of 1 dollar more per hour.
  14. by   plumrn
    As charge nurse, do you do admissions, assessments, care plans, other paperwork, or do the primary nurses do these where you work?

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