Doctors are Bullies

  1. 33
    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 to challenge a Doctor yesterday and he couldn't believe it, but I refuse to be treated like a second class citizen by a Doctor from a third world country who down treads his own woman and thinks he can do the same to the nurses. I informed my manager that I was fuming and what I had said, she was fine with it because all her staff are fed up to the back teeth of the hospitalists in my hospital.
    I am sick of not being given respect, and I stood my ground.
    The doctor had a grievance but in my opinion when the wrong way about it and his arrogance and god syndrome wont wash with me.

    The nurses where I work are afraid of the doctors and worry when they have to page them incase their head gets bitten off-what kind of behaviour is that-bullying is what it is. They stomp around the floor muttering about the nursing staff and the incompetence of the nurses but dont ever ever take a nurse to one side in private and discuss with them the problem they need sorting or to question why an order wasn't carried out. We dont need parents, we are not children who need to be scolded-we are professions in our right who deserve to be given respect.
    Well I for one am not and I repeat not putting up with it any more and I shall be putting in my own grievance. So watch this space
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  3. 36 Comments so far...

  4. 0
    One of the things I hated so much about hospital nursing was the way the doctors treated the nurses. Not ALL of them, but enough of them to make you not want to have to interact with them.

    One time I had to do a dressing change on a burn - my first few months on the job. The surgeon wanted it completed before he got out of surgery. It was the busiest day shift, everything was coming up and going wrong, I'm a new RN, you've all been there before. He order the pre med narc. I went to give it, asked pt to confirm his allergies. He says Oxycontin - was given it 2 days ago in-house and reacted - had never made it to his allergy list. I'm holding oxycodone in my hand. I'm like, woops nope, I'll be back. Had to call the surgeon in the OR - I'm put on speaker phone to tell him his pt is allergic to his ordered med. He sneers at me, "He's allergic to OXYCONTIN not oxycodone!" I can hear a little snickering in the background. I was so taken aback, I started wondering if I'd made a mistake. I'm like, "According to my drug book, one is generic for the other." There's dead silence and then surgeon says real quick, "I'll call you back." I hang up and call the pharmacist... "They're the same RIGHT?!" Yes, yes, yes - she reassures me. I go back to the floor. The next med ordered is different but it's a SR narc not IR. I wanted to die. He actually wants me to go in and give his burn pt a SR narc pre-dressing change instead of an immediate release narc??! I'm a strong person, but I could not call him again in the OR. I just couldn't. And I couldn't wait for him to get out of the OR cause it had to be done by then. I finally gave the pt the SR and loaded him up on his prn narcs to get him through it.

    When I started working at a clinic later I expected the same kind of tx. I was just shocked to see how incredibly NICE they are to their staff. I don't know why they're so vicious at the hospital.
  5. 1
    So, your approach to this is to attack? There is a difference between aggression and assertiveness. You did not stand up to him you shot yourself in the foot.

    You are feeing very self rightous and it is going to bite you.
    anggelRN likes this.
  6. 12
    Some physicians are bullies, this is true. I've never been on the receiving end (probably because I'm male) but I've seen it being done to other nurses. I've always wondered why some physicians go on ego trips. Here's a list I've come up with:

    1) assuming the physician went to medical school in their 20s, they missed out on a key social developmental stage.
    2) they have gone to school much longer than others, thereby allowing them to be a pain in the ass
    3) they get paid more
    4) they are addressed as "doctor"
    5) prestige
    6) they care so much about their plan for care that any disruption causes them to lose it
    7) stress, stress, stressssssssssssssssss
    8) overworked

    Do these reasons give physicians a right to bully anyone? The answer is a, big, astounding NO. I'm sorry to hear that a physician bullied you. I'd suggest filling out an incident report - workplaces are for work, not a bloody elementary schoolyard for bullies.
    fwardlaw147, Chapis, classykaren, and 9 others like this.
  7. 3
    I have heard a few horror stories regarding bully MDs. Working in a Level I Trauma center in a teaching hospital, our MDs (ranging from intern, resident, to attending) are more than willing to educate rather than to bite out heads off....of course if it was something that was lethal to the pt, then that's a different story.

    We as nurses should never be afraid to page a doctor when the pt has a problem, ANY problem! This issue should be addressed. Congrats to you for standing up to the MD. Unfortunately, I don't think it will change his attitude much.
    pooh54, classykaren, and BearyPrivate like this.
  8. 2
    Good for you madwife, we shouldn't be treated like subserviant citizens!!!!! you should stand up for yourself, nurses use to get up and give their chairs to the docs oh good God pleeeaase... this is the 21st century, keep up the good fight, :bowingpur
    .... and the observation about the clinic is so true, I have worked both, I couldn't believe the difference! My take on it is that in the clinic they are at the mercy of the nurses to keep the clinic moving along, on the floor they are the subserviant ones( of the attendings )and want what the attending wants done yesterday so THEY don't get crap, its still ALL ABOUT THEM, and when they grow up, they become irate, nasty and demanding because that's how they were treated (by their attendings). Just like children, mistreated for years, they mistreat their own when they have them oneday. What we need is attendings to start being good role models for their residents, treat them AND the nurses with respect and MAYBE some day things will change, after all its for the PATIENT'S that we are all their, in the ideal world, we would all be on the same team
    BearyPrivate and katfishLPN like this.
  9. 14
    Quote from Agnus
    So, your approach to this is to attack? There is a difference between aggression and assertiveness. You did not stand up to him you shot yourself in the foot.

    You are feeing very self rightous and it is going to bite you.
    I'm not sure which post your are referring to, but if it's the first one, I disagree.

    We don't know what was said so it's impossible to tell whether the the approach was assertive or aggressive.

    Second, standing up to a bully and filing a grievance can be extremely assertive as they both draw a boundary line against unacceptable behavior. So often, bullies keep others cowed because no one will stand up to them, and those enduring the abuse become trapped in a conspiracy of fear and passivity.

    Third, it's a bit presumptuous to tell another person how they are feeling. Stating an opinion about actions is one thing. Telling someone else what they are feeling is quite different.

    What would you suggest someone in this position do? Continue to put up with rude and condescending behavior just because the other person is a doc? Slowly, but surely, the old school thinking that docs are above the rest of us and don't have to follow the rules of civility is being challenged and changed. More and more medical facilities are realizing that allowing docs to act like enraged children throwing tantrums runs counter to not only healthy values but also common sense.

    Don't mean to come down on you personally. I only want to ask what you would do in a similar situation.
    classykaren, blue note, BearyPrivate, and 11 others like this.
  10. 3
    Quote from Agnus
    So, your approach to this is to attack? There is a difference between aggression and assertiveness. You did not stand up to him you shot yourself in the foot.

    You are feeing very self rightous and it is going to bite you.
    Are you refering to my OP??

    As I am unsure of why you think I was aggressive and how did I shoot myself in the foot. I have not outline what was said in our discussion I said I challenged him!!! There is a difference between Challenging and attacking.

    Please feel free to explain exatly what you mean.

    I do indeed feel self rightous as I believe you should challenge somebodies behaviour when they are rude and aggressive towards nursing staff. I doubt it will bite me, I am far too experienced and far too employable for this to affect my life I can assure you.
  11. 2
    Quote from madwife2002
    by a Doctor from a third world country who down treads his own woman and thinks he can do the same to the nurses.
    Perhaps these characterizations prompted some of the negative response to your post.
    zenurse and anggelRN like this.
  12. 1
    Quote from TiredMD
    Perhaps these characterizations prompted some of the negative response to your post.

    Yes you may have a point there. But I honestly believe that the culture begets the initial problem.
    BlueRidgeHomeRN likes this.


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