Doctors are Bullies - page 4

Has anybody got a link to an article which was in the nursing journal from the ANA last month about doctors and how to deal with them as bullies?? I cannot find my journal as I need to find a copy and take it to work. I had... Read More

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    I don't know where you work, but where I work (in a hospital on a busy telemetry/med-surg unit) that treatment doesn't fly!
    Now I admit, I am a new nurse (graduated 10 months ago), but have had some experience working with doctors (prior to nursing), who have what I call "The God Complex."
    In a nutshell, these are people (yes, they really are human) who are under a great deal of stress due to their responsibilities, and the expectations of the patient and their family members that they will fix the problem.
    Consider this: You are a nurse. You might have 6-7 patients to deal with in a shift. As a doctor, and especially if you are a hospitalist, you might have 20-30 patients who you have to round on, write orders for, speak to the family of, and are expected to "cure" ASAP. Not to mention troubleshoot complications, answer pages from the nurses, be on call for 24-7, as well as try to keep your spouse and kids from forgetting what you look like.
    No wonder they are sometimes grouchy!
    Yes there are some doctors out there who are "old school" and see nurses as little more than bedpan cleaners, but for the most part, the doctors of today see us as a vital link to their patients, and understand that we are their eyes and ears to whats happening with them, and give us nurses the respect we deserve for what we do.
    The MD's I work with know I don't call them for minor stuff. If I call it's because I need them for a serious problem. I treat them like people, am polite and respectful, but at the same time, won't hesitate to crack a joke with them, and never let myself be intimidated by their title.
    This is why I get along with doctors that cause nurses with years of experience to hide.
    Amy

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  2. 0
    Does anyone know any good books how to deal with difficult doctors?

    I did not experience dealing with one since I started the new grad program, but yesterday, one of the doctors who is well known for being rude to nurses on our floor came to visit my pt. He wrote a few orders and put the chart away while working on the computer. I saw him writing the orders, so I opened the chart and took out the orders to scan them to the pharmacy. He stared at me and said, "don't every do that again while I am using the chart." I looked at my preceptor, and my preceptor started apologizing...So I had to end up apologizing too. I didn't think that was fair of him to make such a remark on me when the chart was closed and he was using the computer.

    Another new grad in the night shift told me about calling the same doctor because the pt did not have any urine output for eight hours after surgery. The doctor was yelling at the new grad and asked "what do you expect me to do?!" The new grad calmly replied, "it is my obligation as a nurse to report to you on the pt's condition. I am doing this to cover my own a**." He finally quiet down and ordered a Foley.

    Sometimes it's hard not to feel frustrated with these kind of attitudes from the doctor, but I tried not to let him control my mood and make my day miserable. Instead I made a choice to believe that it is his problem and not mine.
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    The only problem I've really had where I screamed at a doc was when a pompous ass of a 5th year resident starting yelling at me in the hallway for giving his patient a bolus that was ordered by the SICU team for a low BP. At the same time, I was dealing with his other patient who was hypoxic and had no lung sounds in the right lung. I laid into him pretty good in the middle of the hallway.
  4. 0
    Quote from TiredMD
    Early in our training most of us learn that many nurses are either too busy or act too busy to waste their time updating a "lowly" resident. Very quickly we realize that it is simply far easier to read nusing notes (if done), look at the chart, and talk the patient, instead of dealing with the rolled eyes and curt attitudes that accompany requests for information or help. Personally, I rarely ask RNs how patients are doing, except in the ICU. I deal with enough crap during my 30-36hr shifts without getting pooed on for asking for an assessment. This obviously carries over when we become attendings.

    I must be very lucky working in a rural area. We have at most 10 patients on our acute side. 5 patients per nurse at most. When the docs round in the morning, we usually go together to see the patient. It is definitely a team atmosphere.

    There is only one doc that gets on a rant about "druggies" and starts spouting all kinds of political stuff in front of the patients and he publicly says he has a "Good Nurse/Bad Nurse" list (So far I'm still on the "Good" list ). And he is the same one who doesn't use lidocaine on baby boys for circs. He has the same exact rants that he has ranted for years during every OB and ER meeting. He is also my husband's doc and really really good at diagnosing "zebras".

    I've had to confront a doc only once about blaming me for something out of my control regarding a pending operation. He apologized and we are friends now.

    The only time a doc yelled at me was during a shoulder dystocia delivery and he said "McRoberts!" . . . . after the delivery of a healthy baby girl, he apoligized for yelling but I said it was an appropriate thing to do. Those deliveries are scarier than hell.

    steph
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    We have had some serious issues with a certain doctor who i shall call A.Other doctors B and C are fine. We have protected meal times which means that no one is allowed on the ward no doctors,physios,visitors,phlebs, no nursing interventions take place in order to allow the patients peace and quiet to eat their meals (apart from emergencies of course)

    Doctor B appears on the ward and housekeeper says 'dinner is in 5 minutes so if you cant be finished then come back later' Doctor B says 'only takes a minute' he sees his patient and is out 3 minutes later. Doctor C appears and realises he hasnt time so says he will come back after lunch. Then as we are dishing dinner out doctor A appears and we say 'its meal time please come back in X minutes' doc A says 'wont be long' and pops to see his patient. We give the dinners out and doc A is still there as i place the patients dinner down. Doc A says ok and goes to write his notes up. A couple of minutes later i find doc A with another patient, one who is trying to eat her dinner. Doc A wants to listen to her chest,check this that and the other. I am feeding an elderly patient who after a few mouthfuls doesnt want any more so i leave the plate on the table (as we are supposed to) and i approach the doc and ask how much longer he will be as its mealtimes. Housekeeper comes and asks him to leave as the patient hasnt eaten any of their meal and its now cold and Doc A starts shouting at housekeeper calling her stupid and interfering. So i step in and say that this isnt acceptable and he kicks off big time calling us 'stupid uppity nurses who dont know anything' blah blah blah. The ward sister contacted matron who spoke to doc A, apparently this isnt the first time matron has spoke to him regarding protected mealtimes yet he continues to interupt mealtimes and bully and abuse nurses.
  6. 0
    The problem with hositlity in the workplace is that it can interfere with safe patient care. If you have doctors that are so horrible to have to deal with, and nurses who dread having to call those doctors and so will put off calling for early signs of problems and wait until those problems become advanced for fear of being treated like a moron at best and being yelled at or written up at worst, then it's not safe for patients. You can say on the one hand that a nurse should call regardless of whether the doctor is unpleasant, but the truth is that if a particular doctor is known for being a butthole every time you have to call, then the nurse is not going to call unless it becomes *absolutely neccessary*. The problem with that is that by the time it becomes absolutely neccessary, the patient could be coding. Now, I am the kind of nurse that will think things through before I make that call, and I will bite the bullet and pull on my flameproof pants and call a rude physician if my critical thinking tells me it's what's right for the patient. But at the same time, the physician who treats the nursing staff badly is accountable for their part in it, and if nurses aren't calling them *before* the patient tanks, then they need to be asking themselves why.

    Even the nicest doctors can get crabby once in a while, and I allow them that. Heck, I get crabby on a regular basis and I'd like to think it's understandable that if my blood sugar is in the toilet and I haven't had a chance to pee for six solid hours, that others would cut me a little slack if I'm not Suzi Sunshine.

    I had a doctor call me a "smart cookie" in front of a patient tonight. She came over later and apologized for calling me a cookie in front of the patient. She was so horrified that she had said that....I laughed, and told her it was fine. I've been called worse, and I like cookies, especially the smart kind!
    Last edit by Virgo_RN on May 1, '09
  7. 0
    Quote from Virgo_RN

    Even the nicest doctors can get crabby once in a while, and I allow them that. Heck, I get crabby on a regular basis and I'd like to think it's understandable that if my blood sugar is in the toilet and I haven't had a chance to pee for six solid hours, that others would cut me a little slack if I'm not Suzi Sunshine.

    I had a doctor call me a "smart cookie" in front of a patient tonight. She came over later and apologized for calling me a cookie in front of the patient. She was so horrified that she had said that....I laughed, and told her it was fine. I've been called worse, and I like cookies, especially the smart kind!

    Good points . . .. .and I have to add that we HAVE gotten a bit too politically correct at work. I've told this story before but our very nice and shy long-haired hippy computer dude at work walked by the nurses' station one day and said "Hello girls". A supervisor WROTE HIM UP! Without asking US if we minded being called girls. We all made her retract it.

    As I age, being called a "girl" sounds way better than "Ma'am".

    Just an aside . ... my husband is on our local Little League Board and there are two new people in the community who are doing some gossiping and backstabbing and pushing of their own child to the detriment of other children . . . ..so this "bullying" behavior happens in all walks of life. Sad.

    steph


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