Who's #1 your patient or you? - page 5

Who's #1, Your patients or you? No matter how busy it is I always take my breaks. Some nurses miss lunch, skip breaks. I would like to here from nurses their opinions on this topic.... Read More

  1. by   KRVRN
    We assign a "break nurse" every shift. That person asks you to sign up for a break time at the beginning of the shift and then comes and covers for you and does any care for you pt that needs to be done. Has its pros and cons, but in the end you end up getting a break.
  2. by   Euskadi1946
    Quote from Agnus
    As corney as it sounds by taking your breaks and looking after your own welfare you are putting your patient first.

    When you sacrafice yourself to your patients you burn out and are not giving your best. IMHO that is the most selfish thing you can do. Some nurses actually say no one can take care of their patients as well as they can and will not take breaks. They are on thier own ego trip and doing a diservice to the patient.

    Think about it this way. Would your perfer a refreshed nurse who takes her breaks and takes care of herself or someone who is so "superior" that she negelcts herself so that you have a nurse who has low blood sugar, poor health habits and no rest taking care of you.

    Personally, I would prefer a nurse who is clear headed and relaxed even if she is not as knowlegeable or experienced as the nurse who doesn't eat, doesen't take a break and brings all that extra stress to my bedside.
    When I had my gall bladder out 20 yrs ago it was right before Christmas and I had a nurse who was sicker than a dog with and upper respiratory infection, but just felt that the unit would fall apart without her. Needless to say she passed her bug on to me and I ended up with bronchitis...can you imagine how much fun bronchitis is with a fresh g/b incision and hacking your lungs out???? OHHHH was I verrrry angry and I let my doc know exactly how angry I was.... :angryfire
  3. by   opalmRN
    Quote from rscarlatti
    Who's #1, Your patients or you?
    No matter how busy it is I always take my breaks. Some nurses miss lunch, skip breaks. I would like to here from nurses their opinions on this topic.
    If you are not number 1 everyone loses. Burnout is high, don't set yourself up for disaster. Injuries cause loss of work and money not to mention lifelong pain. Food can make or break your ability to focus and provide for your patient's, don't skip there is always time for a simple nutritious food, the key is to remember to take it to work Nope unless you are in on a heart/lung bypass, there is no crime in taking care of number 1.
  4. by   RN4NICU
    Quote from CeCiRN
    When I had my gall bladder out 20 yrs ago it was right before Christmas and I had a nurse who was sicker than a dog with and upper respiratory infection, but just felt that the unit would fall apart without her. Needless to say she passed her bug on to me and I ended up with bronchitis...can you imagine how much fun bronchitis is with a fresh g/b incision and hacking your lungs out???? OHHHH was I verrrry angry and I let my doc know exactly how angry I was.... :angryfire
    While I wholeheartedly agree with you - sick staff and stick visitors need to keep their germs at home!! - I know when I was staff, my unit had a punitive sick call policy. If you get frequent upper resp. infections (like I do - good ol' allergies seem to make me more susceptible to everything) you can easily use up all your "management allowed" sick days. Then, in addition to feeling like crap, you get to deal with all the written warnings and write-ups.

    This is also a big reason why we would have to work short a lot. Because as long as you didn't try to come back before you were 100%, it was still one "occurrence", but if you came back and got sick and had to leave or could not come back the next day because you felt like crap from working at half-health for 12 hours -- yep...thats 2 occurrences (a big deal if the hospital only allows 3-4 per year and you go through 2 in 1-2 weeks.) It benefits the employee to just stay out and not risk it.

    Why can we not be treated like adults? Just because a very few morons would abuse a non-punitive policy, we all have to suffer - passing on viruses to one another and our patients!!

    That is so 3rd grade.
  5. by   rollingstone
    I talk a break off the unit in a room with a TV so I can watch the baseball highlights.
  6. by   melsch
    Quote from SCRN1
    I work nights and we don't get a 30 minute break. I work straight through from the time I get there until the time I leave.
    I just quit a straight night job in a LTC facility where I was paid through my breaks because I was always on call and could not leave the building as I was the only RN on and if I left is would constitute an abandonment of my patients. This does not mean I didn't take my breaks, although because I was on call usually they were interupted, I just would extend the time I was sitting down not doing work to my 1/2 hour lunch.

    Please make sure that you take your breaks and remember that you provide 24 hour care, if it doesn't get done on your shift the next shift can do it. Unless it is something immediatly life threatening it can wait. I learned a long time ago that the next shift will make you feel bad etc, but they will find time to take their breaks. The work will get done and if it doesn't then management will have to look at staffing, or what unnessesary jobs they are expecting you to do, but if we continue to kill ourselves for the job they just keep piling the work on until we can't do it anymore.

    Remember you are an employee not a slave.

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