Answering Call Lights

  1. Our med surg dept. is implementing a "No Pass Zone" initiative for answering call lights. Any hospital staff--clinical and non-clinical--must answer a call light if passing by a patient room. So, in essence, a member of housekeeping, maintenance, dietary, computer tech, etc. is required to help out. Anyone else think this is a bad idea??
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  2. 9 Comments

  3. by   SarahJ08
    Lol I've worked in several hospitals where this was " implemented". It's dumb and doesn't work. If the non clinical person actually answers the call light all they say is "let me find your nurse". It's not like they are actually going to help someone to the bathroom or get them ice.
  4. by   RNinIN
    Quote from SarahJ08
    Lol I've worked in several hospitals where this was " implemented". It's dumb and doesn't work. If the non clinical person actually answers the call light all they say is "let me find your nurse". It's not like they are actually going to help someone to the bathroom or get them ice.
    As they shouldn't, unless they know mobility status, diet, etc. So it really doesn't help to have a no pass zone
  5. by   Anna Flaxis
    I think the idea is to create the perception in patients that their call lights are answered promptly. The flaw in this is that this doesn't necessarily mean that the patients' needs will be met promptly. Bad idea.
  6. by   jena5111
    Quote from RNinIN
    As they shouldn't, unless they know mobility status, diet, etc. So it really doesn't help to have a no pass zone
    My workplace passionately promotes the "no pass zone."

    But, as in the case of (one of) my demented NPO patients last night, who would yell, "I need WAAATEERRRR" to every passing individual, the NPZ is more of a hindrance than a help. Because each of those interactions resulted in, "I'll let your nurse know" and "Let me get your nurse." So much time spent explaining that this pt who failed every swallow screen CANNOT have water right now.

    As a new RN of about three months' tenure, I've learned that we really are the gatekeepers of our patients' safety and plan of care. Corporate strategies like NPZ are great in theory but in reality don't benefit the patients (or nurses for that matter).

    Full disclosure: I will admit that I am sometimes guilty of bypassing call lights for patients not assigned to me (while en route to a patient care task/duty/reassessment). Maybe it's due to being new, but I struggle with finding time for other patients when I have six of my own. Especially on my unit, where entering an unknown patient room can lead to a 20-minute "I need to go to the bathroom" scenario.

    Or maybe I am just unpracticed at finessing these unexpected situations. Sigh.
  7. by   Rose_Queen
    My hospital implemented this several months ago. Anyone with an ID badge is supposed to answer any call light they pass. I don't, and neither do most of the people who are in units that they aren't working in. I don't know those patients, so unless there's obvious danger (someone on the floor, etc), those who know the patient can take care of the call light. It's not the safest practice to have Joe Schmoe answering call lights.
  8. by   mandy13086
    Definitely agree. NPZ were implemented at both of the hospitals I work at and I did actually attempt to try it...wasn't Successful. For 1, not everyone participated so while some of us tried and lost time with our tasks & patients, we didn't receive the same help from others. So that was discouraging. But also, as previous posters said, I don't know that patient. Idk if they are allowed to have X to eat or drink, I don't even know if that confused patient is able to walk (and with only 1 assist). So I really am unable to be much help. Now in my old facility, PT and RN staff would keep the white boards up to date with ambulation recommendations as well as diet, but you're still hoping that team for that patient actually did so that day. My current hospital does not do either of those, except npo on the door so no way to know if they have anything specific on their diet. I tend to only go into another nurse's patient's room is their bed alarm is going off and/or they're yelling for help. Of course, for safety then, I will stop and then call their nurse/tech once I am in there and they are safe.
  9. by   tokmom
    Who's brainchild was this? Oh wait. ..people in suits and heels.
    Sheesh..
  10. by   RNingaround
    I try to answer any call lights I can, the NPZ makes me feel a bit more compelled to answer my non-assigned pt call lights. And often it's "Can you turn off the light", "My pump is beeping" or something simple which is always nice to be able to fix quickly for someone. But as others said water, pain meds, ect. these are more common requests and the nurse needs to answer those. Don't worry too much about it, it's really just something to make the floor seem proactive, it's not enforced so don't worry that if you miss one you'll get called out. It's really more marketing than policy. :/
  11. by   iluvivt
    We tried it and it does not last.People did it for awhile and gave up because most of the time patients needed the nurse to perform skilled functions.I thought this was yet another attempt at increasing patient satisfaction scores.

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