Which Area Has the Most Compassionate Nurses

  1. I'm a new nurse (less than one year) and I'm thinking of switching units. There's a lot of trash talking and moral holier-than-thou hype directed at patients where I'm at. It's just not what I want to become and I'm getting the reputation of being a bleeding heart. Before I start shadowing other areas, I was wondering where people have found the more tender hearted nurses at? And yes, I speak up my opinion and the manager has addressed these issues before and after I was here. It's just the culture.
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    About RNite

    Joined: Dec '17; Posts: 4; Likes: 10

    39 Comments

  3. by   elijahvegas
    Youll find a lot of bleeding hearts in hospice.
  4. by   NurseCard
    Yikes.

    I don't know how to answer this.

    Sometimes, what you think is a nurse being "holier than thou", is
    really a nurse telling a patient the truth, that NEEDS to be said.

    A nurse who says "You need to quit smoking, or you are going
    to lose your leg, because those ulcers are NOT going to heal"!,
    is not being holier than thou.

    I'm not sure where you are really coming from.
  5. by   RNite
    Thanks for the response. I mean doing things like looking up a patients past criminal history and gossiping about it. There have been instances of judging patients gender status and open dislike for gay patients. There is a general lack of empathy, I.e. a sexual assault patient had to undergo an invasive procedure and began crying in their room, quietly, and there was just a feeling thrown around that they are just dramatic or behavioral issues.

    I have no problem being frank with people and telling it like it is. What I'm seeing is just frequent trash talking and negativity.
  6. by   NurseCard
    I see. Totally inappropriate to look up criminal history/records
    on a patient. I used to work with a nurse who would do this on
    a lot of our patients. It really rubbed me the wrong way.

    And heck, even if you know a patient's past, you certainly still
    treat them with the same empathy that you would any other
    patient, if you are a decent nurse.

    Unfortunately, I suspect that you are going to run into nurses
    like these, wherever you go, whatever the specialty.

    I'll throw some ideas out there though. How about
    hospice, as PP said. How about pediatrics? What about
    OR; nurses don't even have to deal with awake patients.
    School nurse.

    Home health or visiting hospice; you don't even interact
    as much with other nurses. Doing intermittent HH
    full time is a difficult stressful job that is not for everyone,
    but it is very rewarding and there are plenty of
    nurses who would never do anything else.

    Good luck!
  7. by   RNite
    Thanks
  8. by   RNite
    Quote from NurseCard
    I see. Totally inappropriate to look up criminal history/records
    on a patient. I used to work with a nurse who would do this on
    a lot of our patients. It really rubbed me the wrong way.

    And heck, even if you know a patient's past, you certainly still
    treat them with the same empathy that you would any other
    patient, if you are a decent nurse.

    Unfortunately, I suspect that you are going to run into nurses
    like these, wherever you go, whatever the specialty.

    I'll throw some ideas out there though. How about
    hospice, as PP said. How about pediatrics? What about
    OR; nurses don't even have to deal with awake patients.
    School nurse.

    Home health or visiting hospice; you don't even interact
    as much with other nurses. Doing intermittent HH
    full time is a difficult stressful job that is not for everyone,
    but it is very rewarding and there are plenty of
    nurses who would never do anything else.

    Good luck!
    Those are some great ideas. I worked in a different hospital as a CNA before becoming an RN and that unit did not have the same culture. I think those are some good places to shadow.
  9. by   JKL33
    This has more to do with individuals and attitudes that have gone unchecked such that it has become the culture of your workspace. I also wouldn't be surprised if nurses generally aren't treated too well where you work, but that's a soapbox for another day.

    People can choose to act ethically in every circumstance (specialty) you can imagine or they can choose not to (again, in any specialty).

    I only mention it because you will likely be even more disappointed if you change to a specialty that (perhaps stereotypically) seems more in line with your values only to find out that there are nurses who are overly-jaded or uncaring or punitive or holier-than-thou there, too. Or find out that even though you thought it was a specialty "known for" caring (as if some aren't!), the nurses are spread thin and barely surviving.

    A change may indeed be in order, but it would be better to look for a place where people enjoy working, treat patients well, and are treated well themselves.
  10. by   klone
    I agree with JKL - it has nothing to do with area of nursing, and everything to do with the workplace culture.
  11. by   NurseCard
    You all are correct.

    I just try to throw ideas out there, as far as... in what specialties
    MIGHT the OP have the best chance of not having to deal with
    the stuff that she is describing.

    However, OP... you can run into jaded, non-empathetic, RUDE
    people, anywhere you go.

    Maybe it's best to concentrate/focus on what YOU bring to
    your patients, be the best nurse YOU can be, and you know,
    try not to let your coworkers' attitudes bother you so much.
  12. by   Crush
    Quote from NurseCard
    I see. Totally inappropriate to look up criminal history/records
    on a patient. I used to work with a nurse who would do this on
    a lot of our patients. It really rubbed me the wrong way.

    And heck, even if you know a patient's past, you certainly still
    treat them with the same empathy that you would any other
    patient, if you are a decent nurse.


    Unfortunately, I suspect that you are going to run into nurses
    like these, wherever you go, whatever the specialty.
    I agree with NurseCard.
    I have to wonder if some of it is "just blowing off stress", not that that justifies those behaviors. It seems this is a culture/behavior thing that has gone on there for too long. I hope your leadership addresses it for the sake of the patients there. Certainly you could also find a med-surg unit where you have nurse who do not behave that way too.
    RNite, keep your compassion and maybe by your example the others will learn something.
  13. by   Julius Seizure
    Quote from NurseCard
    I'll throw some ideas out there though. How about
    hospice, as PP said. How about pediatrics? What about
    OR; nurses don't even have to deal with awake patients.
    School nurse.
    I dunno about pediatrics in general, but I wouldn't count on PICU avoiding the behaviors that OP described. Unfortunately, those attitudes and behaviors are still found there - towards both patients and parents.
  14. by   hawaiicarl
    Well it's not ICU! When we all wrote our CCRN exams our consistent lowest score across the board was Empathy. I would say Pediatrics, Oncology, or Hospice. Takes a special kind of heart to be able to survive in those fields.

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