False accusations. - page 3

by Capp

9,402 Views | 59 Comments

I work as an LPN at an assisted living facility while I'm in school to be an RN. I got a call over the radio Sunday that a grumpy family member wanted to complain to someone about his father's care (something that had nothing... Read More


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    tyvin, my main issue with what you said is your condescention. You sound like you think LPNs who work in ALFs don't know how to multitask, prioritize, or be professional. I'm sorry a nurse juggling meds, treatments, care planning and coordination, families, complaints, hospice patients, supervising caregivers and charting for 40+ residents didn't handle a family complaint during an emergency to your satisfaction. Perhaps you should check your attitude.
    monkeybug, imintrouble, Hagabel, and 18 others like this.
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    Thanks, guys. I know I did the right thing. I just wish the guy's complaint was that it took me a half hour to listen to his complaints, but he said it took me a half hour to visit the patient with the broken legs.

    Anyway, if I get fired over this, do you think I could sue or something with a couple statements from caregivers?
    anotherone likes this.
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    Well anyone can sue but since all states but one are work "at will" they can fire you for almost anything. Is this in the US? Most employers will try to protect themselves nonetheless and slowly build a case against you unless the offense is so egregious it speaks for itself. Also if you are in a protected class the employer seems to be a bit more cautious.

    I thought your response was totally reasonable and human. It is normal to be upset and angry when someone lies about you trys to destroy your reputation and make your life difficult. Are you supposed just take it...I think not. Any manager that cannot really gather the facts and see what really happened here and then do the right thing is a coward. Had you taken care of the man complaints first then you really would have violated the standard of care in this situation. If possible give families as little information as possible. I would have just said I was busy with an emergency. I know that in close quarters this can be impossible sometimes but the less information they have the less they can try and twist and use against you.
    imintrouble likes this.
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    tyvin,
    The other night I had a patient come in, bagged by EMS who we intubated immediately upon arrival. I didn't leave that patients side for almost 90 minutes while we attempted to bring her pressures up and maintain her airway. Had you suggested that I stop what I was doing to go let my other patients know what was going on I would have kindly suggested that you'd lost your everloving mind. RNs (and LPNs) multitask and there is no indication that the OP has any issue doing so. We also (wait for it...) PRIORITIZE. The patient with bilateral broken legs was a priority over a patient care complaint. From my limited point of view the poster did what he/she could in a difficult situation and attended the non urgent issue in due course. I would be LIVID if it was my father or mother who you would have delayed treatment for while discussing the finer points of patient care with his neighbors family. That you believe that the opposite is the case (and called someone on it besides) more calls your professionalism than the OP in this case.

    PS:
    Calling someone grumpy in an forum does not mean he/she treated that family member with anything less than the respect that was due. It's a subjective assessment, you know, that thing we do from time to time as nurses? As stated in the original post, the family member confronted the OP as the injured patient was being transported out. This, in my humble opinion, is EXTREMELY telling of the family member's frame of mind, lack of empathy for a fellow human being, and ultimate disconnect from reality. Certainly, it suggests a narcissistic personality and I could definitely see the nurse getting sucked into an conversation with the family member who had the mistaken belief that he was the center of the universe. By delaying first contact you avoid that altogether. In my situation above, every one of my patients could see how busy I was and when I was ultimately able to get back with them they were understanding of my delay.
    Last edit by DeBerham on Jan 9, '13
    monkeybug, VivaLasViejas, Hagabel, and 17 others like this.
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    Having worked Security and as a former police officer, I would have told the whiner, "Get Over It!!!! When someone was very sick or injured, I took care of them, first, end of discussion. No, I did not care about crybabies or whiners. I would document every thing that happened and inform management, as soon as possible, before the whiner could say one word. The CEO of the company could have been at the door and I was going to help the sick or injured resident, end of discussion. The sick or injured were paying thousands per month for help. I was helping a very sick resident, she was burning up with pneumonia and the drug delivery person was mad that I was not at the door. He was rude and I told him, "CRY ME A RIVER."
    janhetherington likes this.
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    I have absolutely no patience, whatsoever, for someone who thinks they are the center of the universe over a very sick or really hurt elderly resident. Those people really tick me off. I will tell them nicely what happened the first few times. If they are still rude, they get the facts of life, like it or not.
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    Too bad, I was not there as the officer, you would have been helping the person in question. I would have told him, "The Nurse is helping an injured individual, how can I help you?" If the individual started complaining about the Nurse, I would tell him more than a few things that he did not want to hear, when it comes to helping the very sick or injured elderly, I have no qualms about using rudeness, to help that person. I care about helping that person to safety and hospital. I do not care about whiners, bellyachers, or complainers. I did not let people hit nurses, use foul language with nurses, or any of this style of ******* behavior. If someone decides to be obnoxious, they were going for a ride in the local police jurisdiction squad car, in cuffs. I know, "they were such a nice guy." One guy was intoxicated, try to break into the retirement community, we had him taken out in cuffs, public intoxication, attempted breaking and entering, etc. Shocking, he had a record, I had to laugh, the nursing staff was freaked out, after I calmed them down, went back to reading my paper. Just another day at office. My attitude was like "All In The Family." Archie Bunker made fun of this police sarge, because he had a Polish last name. The police sarge gave Archie a report to type and it was going to take all night, it was five pages. Archie said, "Sarge, this is going to take all night long!" The police sarge, "If it is, you better start typing!!!"
    Last edit by traumaRUs on Jan 10, '13 : Reason: Tos
    janhetherington likes this.
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    He only used armed robbery on how many people or he murdered a few people, "HE WAS SUCH A NICE GUY."
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    Quote from tyvin
    A simple phone call would have (maybe) averted all that. As RNs we need to multitask and that means consider everything at once and act accordingly. Once I received the emergency call I would have radioed and told whoever to tell the family member that an emergency happened and you would be with them as soon as possible.

    Your attitude is extremely unprofessional. Hopefully if you become an RN you will have a better outlook. You're going to be working with a lot more then just a grumpy man and you need to be ready.
    You are probably not going to like what I'm going to say........I think that saying to OP is extremely unprofessional and needs a better outlook is pretty harsh.

    When I was a supervisor of a large facility....there will always be those whom cannot be pleased....EVER! I have had disgruntled families walk into a Trauma room and demand a cup of tea......selfish idiots! I know that rude family is "frightened"/upset/frustrated....but there are limits and a duty to human decency.....besides just having manners.

    If I know someone is waiting to complain and I have an emergency interrupt my promise to be someone where......I will make sure that some how they get the message. Not that it will appease them. But I am in a hospital with staff members available to help me. In an LTC with severely limited resources.....is a challenge.

    It is not a statement of the OP's professionalism or their outlook on nursing. I think it showed an ability to respond to an emergent situation quickly and efficiently by assessing the injured patients needs and acting appropriately. AND the OP did so in 30 mins...not bad....I'm impressed.

    OP....you did the right thing. You attended to the most critical patient needs first. Which is what you should have done. Unfortunately, in the current climate today in medicine.....that is not going to be recognized as a job well done because of this family member.

    You did a good job in following up with the family member and OBVIOUSLY they aren't going to be appeased......the next time....find a way to inform the family member what is your delay by sending someone to inform them. I would not engage them in a phone conversation because they will begin their complaints since the "have you" on the phone and you will, have to cut them off which will enrage them more.....but send someone with a message. Not that it will help but at least you tried.

    I hope you don't get disciplinary action for you did no wrong. But in the climate today......I just can't predict how they will react. It is a shame how nurses are treated......so much disrespect....no support....shameful. I would say that you realize that you should have gotten a message to the family that was complaining to notify them of your delay but your concern over the injured patient took precedence. Tell them that you have learned from this situation and in the future you will be better able to deal with the situation at hand.....

    I know.... a bunch of bureaucratic garble...but it works.....and no you can't sue the family member.....darn shame too....it might teach them manners.

    ((HUGS))
    VivaLasViejas, nursel56, Sugarcoma, and 13 others like this.
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    so your supervisor takes the word of others over yours? and your coworkers? who is more trustworthy... the irate family member, or the (hopefully) trusted, licensed/certified employees? I think the fact that the pt had a fall, broke his limbs, and cost insurance bux, under the watch of health care professionals, is what would really get you fired... and seriously s a supervisor myself, if a family member told me that, it seems highly unlikely that anyone would allow an elderly person to lay on the floor with broken appendages, FOR THIRTY MINUTES... heres how it goes in my mind hearing that from fam " so let me get this straight, one of my nurses allowed this man to lay there for thirty minutes? and you also let this man lay there without alerting the nursing staff? not that its your position but man thats cold if you did..." I call BS... invalidated d/t ridiculousness...
    Last edit by bloody_trauma on Jan 9, '13


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