Walking on eggshells at clinicals - page 2

Anyone else feel like this? My group has had a few bad encounters with the RN staff. I feel like we are bothering them and they HATE us. One of them flogged another student on Thursday evening... Read More

  1. by   kukukajoo
    Yeah I hear you. I noticed some med transcription errors on first day at new site and had to get them clairified and rewritten for a pt and was afraid of the backlash, thankfully it never came. I have had to listen to nurses say what a bad place the hosp is to work at, listen to a grad from a sister campus telling me that my school turns out bad nurses that are not well equipped, etc. etc. etc.

    I am singlehandedly getting blamed for the loss of a clinical observation site!! Had to do a day at a local docs office and the atmosphere was as you describe- walking on eggshells, dont upset the applecart. The doc was overbooked as he was taking a week off and the other doc in office was at the hospital dealing with an emergency so the office was slammed. Well aside from the poor bedside manner and definate attitude (which I have heard since he is famous for)- I was to not even ask questions, talk to pts or anything- not even one I knew!! Then a pt came in, asian, and he kept calling her chinese and saying how chinese food is not good, they eat too much rice and etc, etc. I thought the remarks were inappropriate and when I saw her chart and saw she was thai I said something and bammo- I fail for the day!!

    I think the clinical instructors have too much power over us and know it. I should be allowed to make up the day somewhere else, but I doubt that will happen. When I spoke to an instructor, of course I was in the wrong, and although they seem aware the site is not very good they need it so it is a deal with it kind of thing.

    Also, not all are bad- I have had some AWESOME interactions and learned so much! There was this one OR nurse who really taught me so much in just a few hours! He was amazing, and there have been many more like that. Unfortunately when there is one bad one, it sticks and hurts more than a dozen good ones and have a much more detrimental effect.

    I learned those above you are always right, and all knowing and you better treat them like that or else! Anything they say or do that is inappropriate or not procedure, let it go. If you complain or say something or even question it then you are going to get it!!!

    Funny- the nursing dept seems to think I am the worst student ever, but speaking to a science professor I took two classes with and others in the college, they swear I am one of the best students to walk the halls and I had been there 2 years before transferring to nsg! My confidence was shattered.
  2. by   barbnyc
    I'm glad I'm not alone in this. I feel nauseous from the crap going on in clinicals. I won't even speak about half of what I have seen. I'm a middle age student nurse and I have been getting abused regularly at this semester's clinicals.

    Yesterday I was assigned to monitor a patient who had a transfusion started an hour earlier before I arrived. This was my first transfusion patient. I take the vitals at the designated time and the B/P is 30+ points LOWER than the last reading. I tell the primary RN who tells me to cross out what I wrote on the document and take the B/P again. I take it again and it is about 10 points higher. "It is probably the machine" she says. I also report this to my instructor. I'm told it's probably the machine.

    I go back to the patient for the next reading and see he has a Venodyne boot on but it is not inflating and deflating . I tell the RN, and she says "it's not on?" She turns it on. I take the next BP reading at the next designated time and it is still low and I document it. I tell the RN. I'm told to get another machine. I get another machine and it is still low.

    My instructor comes in the room a little while later with another student who is administering meds via the PEG, and I ask is that blood flowing properly? She doesn't answer me. The RN comes in and flushes the line twice and says "why is this not flowing?" Then she proceeds to open the flow of the blood line because I guess whomever initiated the transfusion never fully opened the flow after starting the transfusion.

    To make a long story short and me reporting to the RN, changing the B/P machines, telling my instructor and documenting everything, the blood was on the line almost 5 hours. And everyone kept saying either "it should have been done already!" or "why hasn't the blood finished transfusing?"

    And then I kept hearing "did you tell the RN?" I can't understand why people keep asking me if I told the RN, when I told everyone "yes, I told the RN."

    Did I mention the RN and my instructor are friends? I'm thinking to myself, am I responsible if the RN doesn't respond to what I'm reporting.

    I'm going to speak with another professor at the school to clarify I didn't miss something or that there might be an "exception to the blood transfusion rules," and/or if I should be filling out a document, or do I do nothing. I'm an A student, a college graduate, an adult, and feel like I just witnessed gross negligence.

    I've been kissing butt, dealing with all the political nonsense, but I feel like I have been put in an awkward position, especially since we are not permitted to do anything with the transfusion itself at this stage of the nursing program. I
    Last edit by barbnyc on Mar 30, '07 : Reason: addendum
  3. by   abundantjoy07
    Since teaching is a nursing responsibility they need to do it. You should talk with your instructor, there's no excuse for pissy nurses standing in the way of your career. Nurses should realize negative attitudes really deter students from wanting to work on those floors because of their bad experiences. Sometimes nurses like that influence student nurses to want to choose areas outside of nursing because of that. Bad press and publicity goes far. Your instructor needs to talk to those nurses on that floor.
  4. by   WDWpixieRN
    Quote from BabyRN_06
    Sometimes nurses like that influence student nurses to want to choose areas outside of nursing because of that. Bad press and publicity goes far.
    I don't know of outside of nursing, but in 1.5 semesters of my education, I already know one floor, and possibly one hospital, where I don't care to ever set foot again. I can't imagine any student who's been through there wanting to go back. One semester's nastiness and abuse was plenty.

    I seriously spent some time considering quitting school as I thought that if all nurses were that unhappy, I've chosen the wrong (second) career.
  5. by   Lisa CCU RN
    Quote from BabyRN_06
    Since teaching is a nursing responsibility they need to do it. You should talk with your instructor, there's no excuse for pissy nurses standing in the way of your career. Nurses should realize negative attitudes really deter students from wanting to work on those floors because of their bad experiences. Sometimes nurses like that influence student nurses to want to choose areas outside of nursing because of that. Bad press and publicity goes far. Your instructor needs to talk to those nurses on that floor.
    Yeah, this doesn't make any sense, nurses are supposed to be teaching patients things daily, so it SHOULD be easy to teach a student. I wonder what kind of patient teaching they are doing. :trout:
  6. by   abundantjoy07
    Quote from wdwpixie
    I seriously spent some time considering quitting school as I thought that if all nurses were that unhappy, I've chosen the wrong (second) career.
    I've felt that way too...not because of the level of difficulty and not so much the stress...but mainly because it seems that all the nurses were chronically miserable. Working day in and day out with postmenopausal women that ironically are PMSing on a daily basis makes you think.

    Of course, there are wonderful nurses who enjoy teaching and helping...but they are few in number.
    That's why I always let nurses with wonderful attitudes know how amazing I thought they were. Sometimes, I think a pat on the back or a smile goes a long way.
    Maybe that's the problem with some nurses, they get no recognition or kudos after working for 12 and half hours straight. It still breaks my heart either way.

    For a career choice that is grounded in caring it's sad that in nursing the caring isn't plentiful in nature.
  7. by   charlies
    Quote from BabyRN_06
    teaching is a nursing responsibility they need to do it.
    Teaching patients is a nurse's responsibility, teaching students is an instructor's responsibility.
  8. by   WDWpixieRN
    Quote from BabyRN_06
    That's why I always let nurses with wonderful attitudes know how amazing I thought they were. Sometimes, I think a pat on the back or a smile goes a long way.
    Yeah, I neglected to add that I'm in another hospital this semester and it's like night and day. I'm EXCITED to think about working with this group of nurses, techs, etc. They are kind, answer questions, don't roll their eyes, hide equipment, and they HELP us!! I've applied for an internship with this facility and their sister facility based on this experience. I let my CI and also the recruiter when she called to talk about the position know how MUCH I enjoy being there and love the staff.

    Maybe that's the problem with some nurses, they get no recognition or kudos after working for 12 and half hours straight. It still breaks my heart either way.
    Well, I personally am a big believer in that "you get what you give".

    Sure, we're going to get dumped on. I had the biggest whiniest GROWN MAN as a patient this week and he had the audacity to say to me when I told him I was leaving, "Thanks, even though you've been a pain in my a$$." (he actually grinned for the first time that day when he said that). He hadn't slept the night before, obviously wasn't getting much sleep on dayshift, his sats kept dropping below 90%, he was basically NPO, he needed untold amounts of meds, etc., etc....and *I'm* the PIA?!?! I had to laugh when I told my CI....and he wasn't outrageously nasty -- just cranky, lol.

    But as for some of these other just downright nasty people, my heart doesn't break for them. I doubt they're thinking much of others themselves.
  9. by   possumtoes
    i'm sorry you are going through this. I too went through some stressfull clinical experiences.I have precepted students and new hires many times.I have my own way of dong things, but I hope I have never treated anyone with less than the respect they deserve. I usually get my own first v/s as they are part of my assessment, And I never use the Dinamaps. I work on cardiac unit, and if I have an abnormal, I cant report it to the cardiologist w/o them asking if its a manual or not. also, an a fibber will not get an accurate reading.I trust my own ears.as far as being rud there is no excuse.nrsing is stressful, and precepting is more so, because face it,it does slow you down, but I have always appreciated the help I got from students, If only everyone would remember that anyone who is an expert at anything was once a beginner,things would go a lot smoother.Hang in there ladies, it will get better.
  10. by   Daytonite
    Quote from charlies
    Teaching patients is a nurse's responsibility, teaching students is an instructor's responsibility.
    I have to disagree with this. If what you are saying is true, then that would account for all the bad-tempered nurses who just want student nurses and new grads who are trying to learn something from them to get out of their way and leave them alone. Is that the kind of nurse you want to be paired up with in your clinical rotations? I don't think so. So, did you really mean to say that?

    In just about every single RN job I've held, there was at least one small sentence in the job description that pertained to some responsibility in the training or supervision of new employee nurses or student nurses. It's a professional and career duty that we have to each other and if it isn't written in the job description, then it is implied. I think that is just common sense of being in the working world. I just don't understand experienced nurses who trash on students, and believe me, I've heard plenty of nasty comments about this back in the nurses lounge over the years. Makes me wonder what happened to them when they were in nursing school to make them think like that--but even worse, what kind of character do they have in the first place to carry over that kind of thinking and act on it--that's dysfunctional. When I became a manager I stopped that kind of trash talking in my presence if it occurred and came down hard on people who treated others badly--that's what the authority and influence of being in a position of power can do.
  11. by   WDWpixieRN
    Quote from Daytonite
    When I became a manager I stopped that kind of trash talking in my presence if it occurred and came down hard on people who treated others badly--that's what the authority and influence of being in a position of power can do.
    Go Daytonite :angel2:!!!

    That's an interesting comment because our CI did mention early on that she felt the congeniality of the RNs and staff on our current floor had an AWFUL lot to do with the management there!

    :1luvu:
  12. by   not now
    Quote from barbnyc
    I take the vitals at the designated time and the B/P is 30+ points LOWER than the last reading. I tell the primary RN who tells me to cross out what I wrote on the document and take the B/P again. I take it again and it is about 10 points higher. "It is probably the machine" she says. I also report this to my instructor. I'm told it's probably the machine...I take the next BP reading at the next designated time and it is still low and I document it. I tell the RN. I'm told to get another machine. I get another machine and it is still low.
    Next time you get a wonky BP that you think is wrong or dangerously high/low forget finding another machine take a manual BP. That way you can say "Well, I took it manually and here's what I got." It's harder to dispute a manual BP.

    The RN comes in and flushes the line twice and says "why is this not flowing?" Then she proceeds to open the flow of the blood line because I guess whomever initiated the transfusion never fully opened the flow after starting the transfusion.
    My very high strung pharm/clinic instructor will start blood slow because if they have a reaction the least amount possible was infused. Keep in mind that this is the same instructor that lists death as a potential complication to almost everything. I was scared to start IV's because I thought I would kill someone. :uhoh21: Anyway, the RN leaving the floor or the RN you were working with should have opened the flow on the blood. When it comes to something like a blood transfusion your nurse should not be holding you completely responsible. You are new at all of this. He/she should be in there with you explaining what he/she is doing and why.

    Don't worry about rudeness, sometimes they get irritated when they screw up in front of at student or when a student points something out that they should have noticed.
  13. by   kukukajoo
    Daytonite, I wish I could work under you as a new grad!! You have so much knowledge and understanding I just know it would propel me into my career and prepare me for anything!!

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