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ThePrincessBride, BSN, RN 41,764 Views

Joined Jun 13, '10 - from 'Somewhere'. She has '1 RN, 3 tech' year(s) of experience and specializes in 'Med-Surg, NICU'. Posts: 2,079 (60% Liked) Likes: 5,637

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  • 8:22 am

    Wow, so many new grads would kill to work in postpartum.

  • Apr 22

    Had a patient roll into PCU with a red toe. That was it. No other hx. A red toe, in a PCU bed.

    MRI done, nothing. Blood cultures, clear. Pt requested to have the toe amputated....AND THEY DID.

    She was on the unit for like a week.

    Most ridiculous thing I've seen in 12 years.

  • Apr 21

    I am not a seaonsed nurse, but...if all you got was a note for the breach in policy then just move on, do not confront the person who "tattled," do not compare your mistake to hers, do not talk about it, etc, etc. It sounds like your admin was reasonable with you. They notified you of the mistake, you were educated about the policy, they have done their follow-through. Whatever is in someone else's background doesn't have anything to do with it, as unfair as that may seem. Keep it neutral and keep it moving. If you see her, say hi, move along. If others try to stir the pot and say they can't believe that she tattled on you, smile, change conversation, etc. It will go away faster if you don't add any more fuel to the fire.

  • Apr 21

    Am I the only one who wants to know what the error is that you're essentially seeking advice about? Like, did you not double check heparin and it was infusing at the wrong rate for a long time? Did you fail to double check subq insulin and gave the right dose but didn't have 2 RNs check it? There are a LOT of things that can fall under 'breaking a policy, having to do with double checking' which range in severity from not that serious to incredibly serious. If you want us to give you advice, I think it's reasonably prudent to tell us the details behind what you were accused of doing.

    And no matter who reported you, or what their motivations were, they're your co-worker, you still have to work together and be professionals. Let's give her the benefit of the doubt. She made some kind of error in the past. She was disciplined and no doubt felt guilty and horrible about causing a bad outcome for her patient, regardless of what her attitude seemed like at the time. Is it possible that she doesn't want you to make a mistake like that in the future? That she sees something in your practice that could be unsafe? She has a different perspective about patient safety/errors, if she has been through that entire disciplinary process.

    I agree that for something minor, I would typically approach a co-worker directly before reporting something to management. That said, what was your relationship with this person like before she reported you? It seems like you and other co-workers have formed quite a negative opinion of her. Is it possible that she knows everyone hates her and talks about her behind her back? Because if I didn't feel comfortable approaching my co-worker, then I'd go straight to management.

    Again, this is all speculation because I have literally no idea what we're talking about here except that you were reported for something that you think is minor (but won't tell us what it is), by someone who made a mistake that you see as major (but won't tell us what it is). So, with that limited information, these are the thoughts that spring to mind.

  • Apr 21

    Quote from ThePrincessBride
    Double helix, if you knew what happened, you would know it was directly a result from negligence. Trust me....it was really bad.

    But you're right. It doesn't excuse my mistake and as I said before, I take full responsibility.However, I am just not the kind of person who believes in running to management for something that my mentors agree was trivial. My first reaction was anger towards myself and shocked towards her but I hoped she had reported it because policy. But then I hear about her history and among other things and I realize that her intentions were out of malice and pettiness...and that is what gets me.

    And no, I'm not making this up to justify my anger. I want to believe she didn't do it to out of spite but...it seems unlikely. To quote one of my mentors, the girl is not well-liked.
    You made an error, you owned it. Should have been the end of it. But she ran it up the chain of command. It was petty and malicious and has nothing to do with your practice. She really has a lot of nerve. Management has their own part in it. By making an issue of a one-time error, that you already owned, they are encouraging petty tattling.

    This one is not to be trusted. If she tries to ease her own conscience by throwing others under the bus, she has issues that she is not addressing effectively. Not your problem.

  • Apr 21

    I am sorry if my comment came off as harsh, that wasn't my intent. I am drawing from my own experience - from a nursing and management perspective. Just be careful, sometimes the co-workers who appear to be confidants, end up being the most underhanded types of informants. You are better off saying nothing. Management is fully aware of these people who "run to management over pettiness", but they are not going to openly discuss it, and it is their job to follow-up either way. There is a chance your manager didn't think your incident was a big deal because you were only left a note vs being called into the principals office. Don't take it personally and try to be less reactive ----
    A month from now, none of this will even matter. Again, I apologize if my previous comment came off harsh.

  • Apr 21

    It is frustrating and lonely to be the only one awake at work.

  • Apr 21

    Quote from ThePrincessBride
    So, I get a "note" from management. Yes, the policy was technically broken and I take full responsibility (and it had been my first time doing this procedure since starting my new shift). It had to do with dual sign offs (I'll leave it at that). To get some perspective, I asked ta couple more seasoned nurses/mentors for their insight because I was flabbergasted. They are shocked that this coworker went up to management about this issue and have even stated that they couldn't believe this coworker went to management over something extremely petty.

    And then I find out that she was apart of a really bad sentinel event (d/t negligence) not too long ago (think loss of limb). APN confronted her and she took a blase attitude over what happened and even defended her actions (in front of someone she was training!) and that is when APN took it up the chain.

    It kills me. I admit that I am not perfect, but to have someone with a stye in their eye complain about the speck in mine gets me. She not only made this mistake, but she didn't care. She reminded me of the policy (which, at the time, totally left my mind) and I thought it would be left at that.

    To seasoned nurses, how does one deal with a person like this? I am fighting the immature urge to confront her...but how do you deal with someone who throws people under the bus not for patient safety (b/c her sentinel event was enough to get her license tossed), but to make themselves look better? I have never had any negative instances with her before and I wasn't aware of her history, but this has thrown me off guard and ticked.

    I take responsibility for my actions and going forward will not make the same mistake again and will keep my distance away from this one.
    No one is perfect. But if you broke the policy, own that and deal with the fallout as gracefully and with as much integrity as you can. The other nurse isn't important, although I fully understand the urge to let the air out of her tires or something. It's about YOUR practice, and you want your practice to be the very best you can make it. If you want to be truly evil, thank her sincerely for calling attention to your error so that you can fix it and never make the same mistake again. Trust me -- it will mess with her mind!

    Management knows all about the sentinel event, so she's not making herself look any better even if she might THINK she is. There's also the possibility that she was more affected by this sentinel event than you think, but she's too prideful to let on to anyone else how much she cares. I learned this the hard way when a friend was involved in a sentinel event.

    And third . . . don't trust her again. Just don't trust her. Watch your back. This was always the most difficult one for me. It would never even occur to me to throw someone under the bus, so I was never alert enough to watch for the possibility. One particular nurse threw my husband under the bus, though, and I've had an eye out for her ever since. She tried to throw an orientee of mine under the bus on two separate occaisions (two different orientees) but I was able to document (or have the orientee do it) thoroughly enough to de-fang her.

    There's one particular person you have to watch out for everywhere. Usually it's not as bad as all that, but I must confess that the Evangelicals who tell me I'm going to hell for not attending their church with them and the Mommie's who insist everyone buy candy for their kid's schools both have me on high-alert status.

  • Apr 21

    Try to move on. Stay professional with this coworker, but know your boundaries. I keep my distance from most co-workers because you never know who is really your friend at work vs the fake instigator. I've got to know someone pretty well before I become lax around them.

    Plus you admitted that you messed up. Just take it as a reminder and keep on keeping on.

  • Apr 21

    Although I know it would be hard, considering the circumstances, I do think it would be good for you, her, and your unit, if you sat down and talked to her about the situation so you can move on from this situation and be able to work together harmoniously.

    Maybe sit with her in the NM's office or a designated mediator, just so that you have a witness of the conversation, and there'll be a buffer there.

    I've had situations like that and when they don't get resolved, it just gets bigger and bigger and eventually boils over. At that point, it affects everyone.

    I'm sorry you're having a hard time with this emotionally.

    Good luck!

  • Apr 21

    I hate people like that. We have a couple of those.

    If one rubs me the wrong way, I try to give her the benefit of the doubt - like maybe she is hyper-reactive about things now because of what she did. Like she's a super patient safety advocate about that particular issue now because she has a huge guilt complex going inside, regardless of how she acts about it on the outside.

    You know how we have the family members from four states away come out of the woodwork and try to micromanage things when their relative is sick because they have feel terrible for neglecting that relative for so long? I think it's kind of like that.

    That doesn't stop it from being super aggravating, though.

  • Apr 21

    Quote from ThePrincessBride
    I know I should look at it that way but I can't help but be pissed. This kind of behavior is what makes some nurses keep quiet and are reluctant to work as a team.

    In the future, I will avoid this nurse.
    It's a shame that there is no "ignore" button in the real world, right? But now you know, and forewarned is forearmed and all that jazz.

  • Apr 21

    Try not to look at it as someone ratted you out for breaking a policy, but look at it as you broke a policy. Reflect on why it happened and how you will avoid doing it again. Don't make it about her.

  • Apr 20

    How about where are the nurses with at least a year of experience?

    I'd say 75% of the threads by non-students are "I've been in my first job for three months and this is awful/I'm being bullied/what do I do?!?!?!?"

  • Apr 17

    Okay...I don't work in one of the highly specialize areas but I do work med/surg with a huge variety of patients. I see the result of good and poor LTC nursing by the condition of the patients when they get admitted into our service. We often spend a long time repairing poor nursing care from outside the hospital (pressure ulcers and other wounds of neglect are high on the list). I also see it in patient's faces when they know they are being sent back to LTC facilities that isn't a quality place. Most people will never need the specialize services of the nurses that you idolize but most people will need the services of a LTC facility, either for themselves or for their loved one.

    To make a comparison, yes, someone repairs some exclusive expensive cars may have special skills that makes him seem special but the reality is that the mechanics that work on the average nothing special car have more value to society as a whole. You are taking care of someone's mother or father when they no longer can do that. How on earth can you minimize your role and value as a nurse? Our value as a nurse isn't determined by the skills we have but the difference we make to the patient in front of us.


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