Bending and Breaking the Rules in Nursing - page 5

I believe rules can be bent at times. Heck, I feel that some rules can even be outright broken as long as doing so has brightened someone's day. Billie is a pseudonym for the septuagenarian... Read More

  1. by   KRSLPN
    I read a lot of the responses here and was surprised by a lot of the posters stating that they "feared losing their jobs" for bending/breaking the rules.
    I can say one thing, I'm certainly glad I DON'T work in your facility, I couldn't work in a place where the mgt was more concerned with "rules and regulations" then human decency.
    Think about it, if you were in some of these people's place, wouldn't you hope that someone would "break" the rule for you?
    The one example that I thought was completely RIDICULOUS was the hospice patient, very near death having dietary restrictions, that is the most asinine thing I've ever heard, wouldn't want to be their patient.
    Also, bringing a beloved pet in to visit is commonplace, don't think you're going to be fired.
    For all the spineless nurses out there who fear breaking or bending rules, just think, put yourself in the patient's place for just one day. . .
  2. by   Forever Sunshine
    I have a similar story. Stick it where the sun don't shine if you think its against any rules.. lol

    I had to work thanksgiving and the day after thanksgiving last year, so I got to take whatever was leftover from thanksgiving the day after for dinner to work. I took a plate of food and a slice of homemade apple pie Paula Deen's recipe(filled with butter and sugar.) it looked so good crisp applies with a crumb topping and the lattice crust.. and it was the last piece too.

    One of my residents was weepy that she wasn't home with her family this year, and that it was going to be her last thanksgiving. I gave her the usual TLC that we give and spent a few minutes with her and went on my merry way. A couple hours later I went to the employee lounge to heat up my dinner and I thought.. "I'm going to bring this piece of apple pie to her. I am sure I will have many more pieces of apple pie in my lifetime.. I can spare this one." So while my dinner was heating up I brought her the piece of apple pie.. and a little cup of vanilla ice cream to go with it. She burst into tears and was so so happy. I went into give her meds later on and asked her how the pie was shes like "I ate every little morsel on that plate and it was delicious and made this dreary day so much brighter."
  3. by   TheCommuter
    Quote from KRSLPN
    For all the spineless nurses out there who fear breaking or bending rules, just think, put yourself in the patient's place for just one day. . .
    I agree with the points you've made, but I wouldn't go so far as to refer to nurses who fear breaking the rules as 'spineless.'

    The harsh reality is that management at many workplaces will start the process of progressive discipline if it is discovered that a nurse broke a rule, even if it brightened a patient's day. Progressive discipline ends with termination of employment, and I do not blame the nurses out there who want to hang onto their jobs in this sluggish economy where nursing jobs are becoming harder to find.

    I've bent and broken a few silly rules for the sake of the patient in the past, but I tread more carefully these days.
  4. by   CathRN
    I have "bent" the dietary rules for my patients in the past as well. On my unit in the hospital we regularly received overflow oncology patients. I did get written up several times and many verbal warnings, but if one of my oncology patients requested a particular food item, I went out of my way to make sure that they received it. One time, I had an elderly, dignified gentleman that was an oncology patient, his family were always present and the kindest people you could ever run across. This gentleman's wife mentioned one day that he really loved red and black seedless grapes. The next day when I came on duty, they received two large bags of freshly washed and refrigerated (he preferred them cold) red and black seedless grapes.
    As his disease progressed and the end was near, there were many times I saw his wife squeezing the juice from the grapes into his mouth. If that is all it takes for a patient and family, then of course, I would do it.
    That was just one example of "bending" the rules. The gentleman was not on any dietary restrictions, just "meals as tolerated" and the previous nurses deemed it safer for him to receive a soft, bland diet. UGH.
  5. by   CathRN
    I forgot to add that I did speak with the attending physician and he said to go for it! He told me years later that he appreciated they way I treated his patients, that his patients and/or family would tell him that they enjoyed having me as their nurse. That was a heart warmer.
  6. by   aharrellRN
    Count me in for breaking similar rules for similar causes ... A true glimpse of excellence in the ART of Nursing.

    ... Alan.
  7. by   SheenaBeckom
    I agree that rules are an absolutely necessary but they have to be bent at times. I think what you did was done out of love and compassion. I know that bringing a smile to my residents face is one of the most rewarding things. Just knowing that if for only a short time they were happy.
  8. by   BoyNamedSue
    It becomes necessary at times to break away from the bureaucratic structure of the nursing facility in which you work in order to fully exercise your duties as a nurse; duties which transcend the the physical workplace, but, reside instead in the shared understanding of nursing ethics, specifically beneficence and autonomy.
  9. by   Alf2
    God bless you. That is an act of love.
  10. by   NurseGLC
    My Daddy's last meal was a Wonder Bread grilled cheese (made with Kraft singles and real butter) and tapioca pudding. Mom was appalled at the idea, having spend years agonizing over every morsel of food my diabetic, CHF, kidney failing father ate, but he had so much joy in those few tasty bites! How could we have denied him? Kudo's for you and your rule breaking!!
  11. by   GLORIAmunchkin72
    LTC or not, rules or not, it's residents' rights! As long as you explain why they shouldn't have certain foods and document, they can eat what they want.
  12. by   Mrissler
    I did a similar thing while working as a tech on a med surge floor. I was in nursing school and new better but still glad I did it. Had a 90 year old pt who was a diabetic who asked me one late night for some ice cream . I asked the nurse who was a new grad and she said absolutely not. She's a diabetic. I looked at the chart and saw her last blood sugar was in normal range. Went and got a small single serve cup of vanilla ice cream and fed it to her. She had been having a hard time sleeping but after the treat she slept soundly until morning. The nurse never new. But the pt enjoyed it so much. I would do it again. Some days rules are meany to be broken.
  13. by   ktwlpn
    After hospice came on board why in the world were her diet restrictions continued?????

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