The Kind of Nurse I Don't Want to Be! - page 2

Hi All! As most of you know, I am currently working in a hospital as a phlebotomist while I am attending nursing school. Anyways, a few days ago I had to go into a room to draw blood on one... Read More

  1. by   jaimealmostRN
    Quote from gwenith
    Just for future reference I would tell the nurse that the patient was looking dead as my FIRST statement. Entering into a conversation would not be the ideal mechanism. You do not know the circumstances - she might have had toher critical things she was involved in and just stating


    May not mean a lot to the nurse - I have had non-nursing staff come up to me with this sort of request and found that it is because the patient had "made a smell" or was "watering the flowers" - usually with something other than a watering can or was happily snoring.
    I COMPLETELY AGREE. I was a phlebotomist for over four years. Some of the things my fellow co-workers would say to the nurses would completely embarass me (at our hospital the phlebs. did not have to have a certification and often did not have any previous medical experience). I'm not saying that you did anything wrong, but if someone looks dead, check responsiveness, respirations, pulse, then hit the CODE BLUE button....if you don't have at least your BLS and can't be sure if he's dead then YOU light that fire under YOUR butt and RUN out and tell ANY nurse IMEDIATLY!
  2. by   Jen2
    In my facility a phleb is not allowed to call a code, nor are we allowed to assess patients. Hey maybe this guy was a "no code" and I did go to the nearest nurse immediatly. Maybe the guy had been dead for three hours and they were waiting for the family to come in, in any case if ANYONE reports a patient needs to be looked at I will ask WHY instead of stating that's not my patient! I am not stupid! I do have BLS, I am in nursing school, but it is not my job to do assessments, or call codes, only to report if I find something that needs to be investigated by the professional registered nurse, and she wasn't very professional.
  3. by   Jen2
    P.S. the ANY nurse that I ran to decided that this was not her patient!
  4. by   Hellllllo Nurse
    Quote from Jen2
    ........ Even if he wasn't dead it would have only taken her 2 minutes to peek in.

    Nurses are asked to do dozens of things a day that will "just take two minutes."
    As I said before, if they do all of these things, they can't take care of their pts.

    The nurse did act appropriately once you communicated that it was an emergency.

    Give her a break.

    Once you become a nurse, maybe someone will return the understanding, and give you a break when you need one. :kiss

    Best of luck and success to you in your studies.
  5. by   jaimealmostRN
    Quote from Jen2
    I do have BLS, I am in nursing school, but it is not my job to do assessments, or call codes, only to report if I find something that needs to be investigated by the professional registered nurse, and she wasn't very professional.
    If you cannot "assess" then how do you stick??? YOu must assess whether there is a picc line in that arm and therefore cannot be used for phleb, you must assess the pt. level of comfort with the proceedure to know if further explanation is warrented....etc etc. Maybe it's "wasn't her job" to tend to that client (for everyday issues that is) and thats why she was dissmissive of you. Trust me, as a phlebotomist I have checked many a pulse (when the pt. reported that her arm felt "funny" and cold) I wanted to bring the nurse some info she could work with, not "hey that guy in room 12 says he isn't feeling good." They hear that every 5 minutes, thats why the patient is in the hospital! Also as a phleb. I have ASSESSED for arm abnormalities that may cause the pt more discomfort if I were to stick them there, hematomas, scaring, cellutitis. If you don't assess someones arms BEFORE sticking you may find your self in a lot of trouble (a girl I worked with stuck a huge hematoma and was fired for it, another stuck a benign tumor on the wrist b/c "thats were her only veins were." ) If I thought someone was dead (in the hospital or on the street) the first thing I'd do is call their name and try to rouse them, then look for resp and feel pulse and the CALL for HELP (if you can't call a code).....I'm sure THAT would not get you in trouble at your place of work.
  6. by   epg_pei
    Quote from Jen2
    ...Her response to me was "Thats not my patient, you need to find HIS nurse". I said "Who is his nurse"? The reply I got was "I don't know, I don't do assignments, nor do I babysit all of my co-workers."...
    That's typically the response I get, but I am just a student
  7. by   Hellllllo Nurse
    Quote from epg_pei
    That's typically the response I get, but I am just a student

    Looks like that nurse may believe in your tag line.
  8. by   Sheri257
    Quote from Hellllllo Nurse
    Nurses are asked to do dozens of things a day that will "just take two minutes."
    As I said before, if they do all of these things, they can't take care of their pts.

    The nurse did act appropriately once you communicated that it was an emergency.

    Give her a break.

    Once you become a nurse, maybe someone will return the understanding, and give you a break when you need one. :kiss
    As students, I think we should defer to those who have experience here. For all we know, this nurse could have been juggling 10 patients at the time.
  9. by   Marie_LPN, RN
    Quote from epg_pei
    That's typically the response I get, but I am just a student
    Had someone say this to me after i'd thought i'd found someone dead once 5 minutes into my shift.

    Me: "Jane (not her name), there's a pt. in the room who might be dead, she's not breathing and she's blue"

    "Oh you're just a student, how would you know? All you students think you know EVERYTHING. I'll check on her when i get a minute."

    Me: "Oh excuse me, but in today's books they taught us that a blue body + ZERO breaths a minute equals a PROBLEM that necessitates immediate attention"

    The pt. had been dead for est. 3 1/2 hours.

    The nurse resigned 2 days later. (don't know if it was over that or not)

    Granted it wasn't the right kind of attitude to use, but i wa sick of getting blown off when i'd walk in and someone is obviously drowning in hypervolemia telling this nurse about this "emergency" and using the word "emergency" and being told "i'll get to it in a minute", when this patient is trying to cry for help and can't.

    (And i will not be the kind of nurse to blow off this type of stuff when a CNA tells me about it. I'd rather check on the pt. and find that the CNA was wrong, than to EVER ASUME they are.)
  10. by   Hellllllo Nurse
    BTW- a CNA once told me that a pt didn't look right, and this saved the pt's life.

    Here's what happened-

    I was new to a LTC facility and did not know the pt. It was noc shift. I had 60 pts/residents and 3 CNAs.
    During rounds, a CNA approached me saying "When I do peri-care on Mr. So-and-So, he always fights me, but he's just laying there all floppy. He didn't even react when I turned him over. Something is wrong with him"
    This was at 2400.

    I went and checked immediately, and found the pt non-responsive. I checked the chart and he was a diabetic. I did a finger-stick and his bs was 35.

    I administered IV D50W. The pt came out of it and was fine.

    This pt was not due for his fingerstick until 0600, and this happened at 2400. Had this CNA had not told me that something was different about the pt, he surely would have died. As I said, I was new to this facility and did not know the pts.
    Together, the CNA and I saved this pt's life.

    If this were to happen again, I would just give the D50W stat, and not bother with getting a glucometer reading first.

    I wrote a note to the DON praising this CNA for her actions.
    I loved working with this CNA, even if she did sometimes sneak out to smoke without telling me.

    Anyway, some of us do actually listen, sometimes.
  11. by   Jen2
    I do assess for an adequate puncture site! If a particular arm cannot be used there is a sign above the bed do not use rt/lt arm. I do assess how well the patient is tolerating the procedure. Nursing assessment however, should be done by nursing. So many times I have gone into a room with a deceased person and they were a DNR and the nurses were just waiting for the family to come in. Should I have begun CPR on the DNR because I couldn't find the nurse? I agree with LPN2BE2004. I'd rather prove the person wrong.

    Regardless. I will not make assumptions and think that every student or unliscensed person is stupid or just speaking to hear themself talk. What is even worse if you do bring some of the nurses concrete info. they say oh what do you know! Either way in some peoples eyes your just a small person and wouldn't know squat. I do not want to be the nurse who is not a team player. I do not want to be the nurse that belittles others that she feels are beneath her. I think we all need to respect each other as people and as members of the healthcare team.
  12. by   gwenith
    There is nothing or should be nothing wrong with a phlebotomist calling for immediate help by pressing the buzzer three times or whatever and it is better to start a code and have to stop for a DNR order than to not start. This is why DNR's are an "opt out" clause. It would not be the first time a code has been started and then stopped because no-one knew of the DNR when the button was pushed.

    A bit of embarrassment about being wrong if a patient were not dead is better than the patient dying. CPR has been started on patients who are living (geroff me! I ain't dead yet!) in fact it is the reason why the "shake and shout" step was introduced in the first place.

    Twice in the last two days I "ordered" the consultant to go to a patient in another bed area I apologised after for my abrupt tone but in both cases we had a patient falling rapidly into a heap who needed a consultant stat!! At lot has to do with the tone of voice "excuse me but could you see the guy in 12" WILL get you a different reaction to "Quick the guy in 12 looks real bad and I think it is very serious"

    I am not saying the RN was not rude or that I would have reacted as she did BUT you do know know what ELSE she was handling at that time. I have people remark that "it looks quiet and you are sitting down" while I had 1 pt with severe chest pain I have just finished first line managment on while another had an out of control BSL and the reason I am sitting down now is so I can find the !@#@ Doctor's phone number to contact him about his patient and get further orders before the chest pain becomes an MI.

    All too often I have heard hasty and ill founded judgements passed on nurses. Please, put yourself in her shoes and think about how to make the next time go the way you would like.
  13. by   delta32
    "If this were to happen again, I would just give the D50W stat, and not bother with getting a glucometer reading first."


    please don't do that if the patients having a CVA you would have just made a grave mistake.If the patient has a hemorage or "bleed" in the brain it kills tissue..not a good thing. its like giving it threw a infatrated IV line where the person would loose there arm.


    Jamie

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