wrongly accused & need advice

  1. I work in a pretty busy PACU and took care of a pt back on Dec 14th who is now saying that as she was waking up (she never said in the PACU) a nurse used inappropriate language with her and told her to "quit whining". I did not do this and my coworkers are convinced that this never even happened at all. If it had said it, then someone I work with would have heard it.
    I was called into my manager's office on Jan 7th and asked if I remembered this pt from 3 1/2 weeks prior. I've probably tken care of 100 pts since then so, obviously this pt did not stand out in my memory. The pt even described her nurse who supposedly did this and I DO NOT fit her description. I was not provided with my PACU record so I could at least have it to refer to. I asked for it, but management said they couldn't get it. I denied these charges and was suspended for a day and a half because of this.
    Afterward, I obtained my PACU record along with this patient's H&P. She has a significant psych history and she received 10 mg of MSO4, 100 mcg of Fentanyl and 2 mg of Versed from me during her hour long stay in the PACU. At one point I had to do a chin lift so she could maintain her airway. I ask you, how good of a historian can she be after all of those meds? I make it a point to always write who I give report to when sending my patients out of the PACU, and surprisingly the nurse I gave report to in ICU DOES fit the description this pt gave of her nurse. Mind you, I am not accusing her either. I took all of this new found info to management and they listened to me and said that I was smart to go and look at my chart, but they were not going to change their minds about the suspension.
    I am at my witts end with this situation. ANY ADVICE???
    •  
  2. 6 Comments

  3. by   live4today
    Quote from Dawn401
    ........................................ANY ADVICE???
    Make an appointment with an employment attorney. You have a right to protect yourself and your employment record when you did nothing to warrant the accusations.

    Whatever happened to "innocent until proven guilty" in America folks?

    I hope you pursue this wrongdoing, and once proven right....resign and take your professionalism elsewhere. Never work for a place that questions your integrity when you know you've done nothing ethically, morally, or professionally wrong with your patients.
  4. by   GingerSue
    better get it cleared up, if there has been a mistake.
  5. by   ProfRN4
    Quote from Dawn401
    I took all of this new found info to management and they listened to me and said that I was smart to go and look at my chart, but they were not going to change their minds about the suspension.
    And why not?? The pt gave a description, that did not fit yours, and someone else who cared for the pt DOES fit that description? Hmmmm
  6. by   Antikigirl
    Yeah, this is the point between "innocent until proven guilty" and "the customer is always right" mindset..and for some reason the 'customer is always right' wins every time!

    It makes me so discouraged when professionals are not thought as professionals! A professional will accept if they make a mistake, or go through what you did and prove you did not do this and thusly try to improve the situation by showing good faith and that this tree isn't worth barking up so find the right tree!

    And for an organization that will believe a patient under the influence of that many drugs, and a psych history, over you is absolutley wrong in my book! We have to take the charges she said as serious, but not to the point of 'pick a scapegoat and move on' which is a very common practice today..and usually falls upon us nurses! This shows your employers dedication towards you...and should be looked at very seriously. They have shown now that they will send you up the river first before going even as far as to check the charting?!?!?! NOt what I would call very nice employee respect there...

    Find legal help, or start looking in the want ads...maybe it is time to move on to something else...
  7. by   Dawn401
    Thanks for the advice, guys! I'm starting an appeals process through personnel to hopefully have this removed from my record. I know I am right! Time will tell. I'm a very dedicated nurse. I love my job and my coworkers and I'm good at what I do. It's sad that an incident like this can ruin why you went into nursing. I feel like I have to walk on egg shells now with everything I do and say. You never know when something like this can happen, ya know? People can say anything while innocent others have to pay the price.
  8. by   Thunderwolf
    I am sorry this had to happen to you. I'm proud of and glad for you for taking charge of this situation to clear your name. It is a shame that you have to go through this process in the first place...considering the circumstances that you described. Some made a good point though...your management process appears broken somewhere. Once you clear your name, observe if this has occurred before and even after this situation. If it has and does, I would suggest looking for a transfer or new employ because of your management...for your own good name and peace of mind.

close