What punishment should this nurse get? - page 19

Had an interesting situation that came up and thought I'd throw it out for discussion. One of our staff RNs was found sitting in a chair and sleeping at the bedside of one of our ventilator... Read More

  1. by   SandraJean
    Quote from lync
    Don't we nurses get enough punishment just by working as nurses. Where else can you work and get so little thanks, & respect?? Nurses are expected to be perfect little people, like machines. We embrace humanity in our patients, but tolerate NON within our ranks. 99 good deeds, and jobs well done are very quickly wiped out by 1 "you messed up". We need to extend compassion and humanity to our fellow nurses. So many are already leaving the field in droves.

    I agree. I think we need to look at the person's motives and general work habits. If this was a one time occurance and no real harm was done, I think a verbal warning is the first intervention to be taken. If the sleeping became a habitual thing, that's entirely different.
  2. by   ohioln
    I don't think she should loose her license or be fired. First of alll, medication should have been ordered to calm the patient down. Secomd, she should be counseled and written up, and if it happens again, fired, as long as no one was harmed! If she finds that she cannot stay awake on night shift, mayabe she should think about working 1st or 2nd shift or going into another area of nursing such as home visits, where she could work during the daytime.
  3. by   MCF
    Based on the records of other disciplinary offences (e.g., drug diversion, patient harmed or dead due to negligence), I would say she should receive a warning from the facility, perhaps inhouse probation. Sounds like an isolated incident. If this is repeated, then perhaps a final warning and/or action by the Board. Some facilities make a clear distinction between staff deliberately taking a nap, and accidentally falling asleep over their work. She should have ensured that someone would check on her periodically - or the charge nurse should have - but apparently she had no expectation of falling asleep. (Yes, she should have considered that as a possibility.)
  4. by   MsPaul
    A one time event? No one damaged, no, maybe a letter of counsel in her file. If it was a habit yes. She then becomes a liability.
  5. by   jbarton52
    New to this website, but felt compelled to register and respond to this issue..... bottom line is, or should be, what is the hospital's policy regarding any infraction? Surely, there should be clear guidance per policies so the nurse manager can respond appropriately per hospital policy and, thus, this becomes a moot point. The employee would know up front what the consequence is for an action (or inaction), the employee's supervisor would know, and etc., etc., etc. Make sense?
  6. by   merlie
    Firing the nurse will be too much punishment, i think suspension will be enough for her. Come to think of it , she did not do it on purpose. I'm sure 99% this nurse will never do it again, you always learn to your mistakes.
  7. by   lpnstudentin2010
    Now know this is from a patients (five surgeries the most recent this past August) point of view (I am a hopefull student nurse in a year or two):

    She should not be fired, she should be held accountable and get written up, and mabey some other type of diciplin, but fireing her is over the top. She was just sitting quietly with a patient and fell asleep. If ANYONE is tired and sits in a dark quiet room the are bound to nod off. If I found my nurse asleep I would actually feel bad for her that she was that tired not angry that it had happened.

    Some nurses make much worse mistakes. Like not giving pain meds for a couple of hours. I got moved from ICU to the neuro floor and before I left ICU I asked for pain meds. They said I could get them as soon as I got to the floor, when I got to the floor the nurse couldn't give them to me because she had not, it was either she had not ordered the PCA pump for me or she had not assembled it, if memory serves right it was that she had not assembled it but I could be wrong.

    Just my opinion
  8. by   joyful2
    I work on call as a hospice nurse. If every nurse got fired for sleeping on the job there would be no nurses. In some nursing homes the entire staff is sleeping when I walk in for a death visit.

    I worked in a hospital in NJ were the entire RN staff slept in geri chairs for 2-3 hours. All of the nurses worked two jobs. It was wrong, but the supervisor allowed it because she couldn't get nurses to work nights.
    Maybe the question should be what pay and benefits do we need to hire qualified nurses that won't sleep on the job. This nurse sounds like she sat down and the dawn hours closed her eyes.

    I am 51 years old and it is harder and harder to be a nurse with high patient care standards in the prevailing conditions and sad to say some nurses I sometimes work with. Sometimes feel like a dinosaur.
  9. by   jbarton52
    Sounds like you'll be a great nurse; best wishes for a successful career!
  10. by   scampi710
    hi joyful your input is a godsend thanks
  11. by   bluesky
    Quote from rogramjet
    The first question that will be asked is- Was anybody hurt? Did she neglect her patients? Yes the meds were late, but that happens. I really doubt she will lose her liscense over this. Things like this happen. Nobody was hurt because of it.
    EXACTLY. :spin:
  12. by   abrenrn
    It has been a while since I've been to allnurses.com - a couple of years, in fact. I still get the newsletter and glance at it - and I was intrigued by the title of this thread so I came to see what it was about. I read the situation and my first reaction was - why would anyone even need to wonder about this situation? An otherwise excellent nurse unintentionally falls asleep in a situation where that would be easy to happen; no harm to any patients .... I have to admit, I was taken aback by the contraversy. Some of the responses reminded me of why I stopped coming to this forum. Fortunately, I also found the type of compassionate and thoughtful responses I used to come here for.

    BTW, I went on a job interview today with a home health agency. I mentioned this website to the interviewer - and this thread. Happily, she was of the same mind as me; I would not have considered accepting a position at this agency if she was not. (Her comment had been - discuss with nurse, maybe put something in employee file in case it happens again).
  13. by   sherylchaynes
    Will all the perfect saints in the house hold their hand up!!!
    None of us are perfect, and even the most excellent nurse makes mistakes. Should you fire everyone who mades a mistake or who slip up sometimes.? No I do not think so. So many nurses in " administration" make mistakes or slip sometimes, and who knows about it? Give the nurse a break. Keeping watch over this restless patient might have worn her out. It is not professional what happened, but! sitting with him and seeing him so calm, might have had a sedating effect on her too.
    My opinion is that she should be reprimanded and cautioned not to allow this behavior to reoccur. I am almost sure that if she is the excellent nurse you say she is this will never happen again. Give her a break

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