What are your thoughts on patients who request no male nurses taking care of them? - page 8

by Mike A. Fungin RN 31,201 Views | 132 Comments

What are your thoughts on patients who request no male nurses taking care of them?... Read More


  1. 1
    Quote from zippygbr
    are there any responses that actually say that or just responses from people saying that it;s someone's loss if they reject the care offered by a professional on the basis of an characteristic of the carer ...

    exactly how far are you prepared to allow the wants of patients to go vs the needs of the patient, the service and the unit as a whole ?

    there is also the issue of those who should know better ( i.e. other nurses ) not only supporting patient choice ( within the bounds of the service) but suggesting that it is their opinion as well ) opinions which are common among the population at large are not really suitable among health staff and especially among professionals.
    i'm not sure i understand your comments.

    i will say that patients who start rejecting caregivers based on one characteristic or another often wind up with substandard care. there was the patient who rejected our best nurse because "she's too old" and rejected the next caregiver because "he's black." they didn't like another nurse because "her english is atrocious" (the lady had a master's in english literature and understood both written and spoken english better than most americans, but she did have a thick accent) and the next nurse was rejected due to visible tattoos.

    now while it is the patient's right to refuse care, if they refuse all care they have no business taking up space in our health care system. and when they refuse all caregivers, who is going to be left to give them care? in that patient's case, it was only the travelers who weren't rejected and who would care for her. now those travelers were competent nurses, but they weren't experts in our specialty.
    anotherone likes this.
  2. 3
    I am a retired nurse, due to health issues. Even as a nurse I felt uncomfortable with the personal care I recieved from male CNAs and male nurses. I had a Whipple procedure due to pancreatic cancer. I had a j tube for feeding. Because of that I had a couple of accidents. It was very uncomfortable for me to have a male clean me up. I didn't complain. They were professional and kind. I see male physicians so I never thought I'd feel that way. Most physicians don't get that personal except once a year for a pap smear. I don't want to offend anyone and would never refuse to have a male nurse care for me. I've worked with some great nurses, so I'm just commenting on how I felt.
    anotherone, tewdles, and Susie2310 like this.
  3. 1
    Quote from ruby vee
    i'm not sure i understand your comments.

    i will say that patients who start rejecting caregivers based on one characteristic or another often wind up with substandard care. there was the patient who rejected our best nurse because "she's too old" and rejected the next caregiver because "he's black." they didn't like another nurse because "her english is atrocious" (the lady had a master's in english literature and understood both written and spoken english better than most americans, but she did have a thick accent) and the next nurse was rejected due to visible tattoos.

    now while it is the patient's right to refuse care, if they refuse all care they have no business taking up space in our health care system. and when they refuse all caregivers, who is going to be left to give them care? in that patient's case, it was only the travelers who weren't rejected and who would care for her. now those travelers were competent nurses, but they weren't experts in our specialty.
    i do hear what you are saying, and your frustration. but the characteristics you brought up are to my mind a separate issue from the focus of this discussion, a patient requesting no male nurses. i saw this discussion as focused on the gender of the nurse. in the situation you describe i still can't think of anything else to do except to respect the patient's wishes regarding caregivers and try one's best to accommodate them, which it appears your facility did.
    tewdles likes this.
  4. 0
    can the patient request only female physicians, female lab techs, female housekeeping, female admission clerks, female imaging techs, female ambulance drivers, female emt's, female paramedics, female hospital security, female nursing supervisors, female patient advocates, female insurance customer service, female gift shop persons, female hospital engineers, female cna's, female pca's, female or techs, female pa's, female pharmacists, female transporters, and oh well you get the point!

    as a nursing student (yes male) my patients preferred male nursing students for their am care, in their opinion we were more gentle and more professional.

    can we ever get past the fact that nursing is a female only profession. why are we called nurses and males nurses. can't you agree a nurse is a nurse is a nurse, is a nurse etc. male nurses have been the minority in the nursing profession from the beginning, that is changing. all patient care professionals (male) are gaining recognition as true professionals. certainly not the doctor's handmaidens as things used to be, back in the day.

    it is unfortunate that male nurses are thought of as different by their female counterparts, someone who is thought of as a male nurse not a nurse. it could be said the female majority in nursing wants to keep things where they are. continue female domination of nursing, it began as a female profession and everyone including patients want things left like they were. have you ever seen a male nursing cap or hat when male nurses graduate from school?

    i may have some bias. keep in mind my nursing experience is primarily military where nursing is more balanced between male and female nurses.

    i hope i have caused you to step outside the box and understand where some of these perceptions come from. i hope you have taken time to think about this issue. sorry if i ruffled your feathers. nurses must be thought of as professionals not male or female. are the doctors thought of as doctors not male and female. is it now true that a male nurse is viewed and treated different because that the nursing profession is stagnated unwilling to grow. why is it that nurses are limited by their sex when doing nursing care?

    so, where do we grow from here?

    “do or do not... there is no try.”- yoda
    Last edit by Dave Ray on Jun 28, '12
  5. 0
    yes its a modesty issue for the most part, i for one have no problem with a male nurse taking vitals, drawing blood, ect ect . What i am uncomfortable with is being naked (ie. exposing boobs, butt, "lady bits"...lol) in front of a man thats not my husband. Im not uptight or super religious or anything its just weird, the only other man thats seen my naked is my OB and thats becuase he is the best in miami, and i would rather have the best be my doc in that dept. taht worry about the gender, now if its a non-life threatening issue and i have to be in some state of nakedness, i would rather do it in front of a woman, then wonder if the male RN is getting off checking out my boobs, and other parts.
  6. 2
    There are a lot of possible reasons for that. I think that they should just be respected, because nobody except that person knows why they feel like that.

    Suppose a female patient was abused by a male. Having a man in such close quarters and possibly seeing any exposed areas could be really stressful.
    That's not always the case, but there could always be something like that. So, I feel that it's best to just respect their request.
    Susie2310 and grownuprosie like this.
  7. 2
    Personally, I don't see a problem with this type of request from either gender. As others have said, if it makes the patient more comfortable, why not? I'm sure there are extreme exceptions, but usually it usually involves situations with intimate care or exposure. Ultimately it is the patient's choice whom they will allow to care for them and we need to respect that.

    The bottom line is that it doesn't really matter why. The patient has the absolute right to refuse any specific caregiver for any reason. Note that refusing a specific caregiver is not the same as refusing care. If a female patient says "no males" or a male patient says "no females", then the facility has limited options: accommodate the patient's request if possible; discharge the patient if their condition permits, or transfer them to another facility if it doesn't. You can not legally force a caregiver on a patient over their objections.
    tewdles and Susie2310 like this.
  8. 5
    Quote from dave ray
    can the patient request only female physicians, female lab techs, female housekeeping, female admission clerks, female imaging techs, female ambulance drivers, female emt's, female paramedics, female hospital security, female nursing supervisors, female patient advocates, female insurance customer service, female gift shop persons, female hospital engineers, female cna's, female pca's, female or techs, female pa's, female pharmacists, female transporters, and oh well you get the point!

    as a nursing student (yes male) my patients preferred male nursing students for their am care, in their opinion we were more gentle and more professional.

    can we ever get past the fact that nursing is a female only profession. why are we called nurses and males nurses. can't you agree a nurse is a nurse is a nurse, is a nurse etc. male nurses have been the minority in the nursing profession from the beginning, that is changing. all patient care professionals (male) are gaining recognition as true professionals. certainly not the doctor's handmaidens as things used to be, back in the day.

    it is unfortunate that male nurses are thought of as different by their female counterparts, someone who is thought of as a male nurse not a nurse. it could be said the female majority in nursing wants to keep things where they are. continue female domination of nursing, it began as a female profession and everyone including patients want things left like they were. have you ever seen a male nursing cap or hat when male nurses graduate from school?

    i may have some bias. keep in mind my nursing experience is primarily military where nursing is more balanced between male and female nurses.

    i hope i have caused you to step outside the box and understand where some of these perceptions come from. i hope you have taken time to think about this issue. sorry if i ruffled your feathers. nurses must be thought of as professionals not male or female. are the doctors thought of as doctors not male and female. is it now true that a male nurse is viewed and treated different because that the nursing profession is stagnated unwilling to grow. why is it that nurses are limited by their sex when doing nursing care?

    so, where do we grow from here?

    “do or do not... there is no try.”- yoda
    first of all, female nurses earn $0.86 for every $1.00 a male nurse earns, so in that respect who cares if they don't make caps for you, you'll earn more money despite equal work. (source: monster.com)

    second of all, 1 in 5 women have been raped (source: ny times, dec 14 2011), this is a fact you are going to have to get used to and respect if you are going to provide care to women. women request female doctors, nurses and other care providers all the time because through the course of medical treatment we are placed in situations that cause us to feel vulnerable. it is ridiculous to equate requesting a female nurse with requesting a female housekeeping staff member.
    OCNRN63, tewdles, sapphire18, and 2 others like this.
  9. 0
    Quote from grownuprosie
    70% is approximately 2/3 (66.7%). So, you are saying that 2/3 of all the male patients in the Urology practice see 2/3 of the physicians. There is no desparity there. The joys of math!Trust me, both of you benefit from this. That physician has probably worked with those very capable women for years. You just got on his least favorite people list for implying that their presence near your dangly parts was unprofessional. If it is important to you that the physicians staff are male, then you should have asked that when you made the appointment. Attacking the physician was not the correct resolution here. Use your dollars to make the point and go to a doc that meets the standards you set for yourself. Not everyone thinks the way you do. I do not know how you expect for every office to practice descriminatory hiring (picking men over women) just incase someone like you walks through the door. Out pt settings often do not have the same resources the hospital does. If needed, a hospital could comb the floors looking for a male nurse. At an out pt facility, it is just them. a staff of 10-20 people. most of which will probably be female. Please do not act like you were victorious against this physician. You were just rude.
    Wow, you make a lot of assumptions for being a patient service rep. All patients are entitled to respectful care. Would you be outraged to make a mammography appointment and to be greeted by a male mammographer and a male student. Do you always check first to see if male office staff are there. With 95 percent of all nurses, cna's and medical assistants being female this probably dosen't even cross your mind. It's rude and unethical to even assume that all men are comfortable with opposite gender care.
  10. 0
    agreed! the customer/patient/client calls the shots, to a degree! if its a matter of calling colours, to make the patient more agreeable to treatment, do it.
    I am not a patient service rep (whatever that means). I am in the trench nurse ! Dont catorize with corporate catch phrases.


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