Demanding Patients - page 2

Hi, I am wondering if anyone has any advice/tips on how to cope with the stress of demanding patients. I work in Long Term Care, each shift I am responsible for 20+ patients. I do the night shift,... Read More

  1. by   amoLucia
    I've 2 lines that I try to use that seem to defuse alert & orient pts who are demanding. "What one thing would help you now?" and I keep repeating this until I can get them to be focused and be specific. Then my second line (which my CNAs love) is "you can be next, but you can't be now. I will help you. Next". This seems to help, but I make sure I do address their response and I let them know what I did.
  2. by   not.done.yet
    I am a pretty new nurse but already learning how to draw boundaries. The 320+ lb patient who is uncomfortable and can't move themself who wants to be repositioned every 20 is unfortunate that I have to explain that I will not try to move them myself and that getting 2-3 other people to help me so that none of us hurts our back makes them upset, but it is what it is. When this person understood I WILL help them, but that there are parameters that are not negotiable (using the appropriate number of people to avoid injury..that that gathering that many people together at once takes time in the hospital) they at least acceped it even though it made them cranky. One can understand/empathize with why the patient is unhappy and it still not change the facts of what is possible to accomplish.

    I do struggle with the ones that come out of their rooms instead of using the call bell, demanding help NOW. We had one of those families this week. Literally every 15 minutes in the hall asking for their nurse because their loved one was in denial about how sick they were. The patient was/is a controlling, demanding, type A who had been thrown for a loop to suddenly be helpless (trauma fractures...wanting to get OOB when that wasn't even remotely an option due to embolus risk. The family's habits for dealing with this person has been to give what they want in order to keep the peace. Not a possibility in this situation and they just could not accept that we were not going to drug their loved one into a stupor and also weren't going to give this individual what they wanted because it was not in their best interest. Gonna need more practice with that type. Took two of us to help the nurse assigned to that room from going crazy with fatigue and exasperation. Again, understood this family had been turned on its ear and the patient, in the prime of their life and career suddenly thrown into a horrible, worst-nightmare (for them) situation..and that NONE of them knew how to deal with it or the hospital environment. But that empathy and understanding still doesn't change the facts of what is possible and what is safe.