I am struggling with patient families lately. - page 15

I am fed up with patient families treating the hospital like a family reunion site. I am tired of the family members that insist on staying the night, why? In some cases I get it. But when your boyfriend has the flu or your nana... Read More

  1. 1
    Quote from monkeybug

    What in the ever living heck gives you the right to declare burnout and the need for career changes for so many experienced nurses? I'm sorry, but you are as wrong as wrong can be. There are many families that thrive on making life difficult for nurses. They are wastes of oxygen, they have nothing better to do, and it entertains them. When a nurse walks in a patient room for the very first time, and the family whips out a cell phone and starts recording, muttering to each other about lawsuits, then they are absolutely trying to make life difficult for a nurse. When they lay, two and three at a time, all over the floor and flat out refuse to get up, causing an obstacle course for the nurse every time she needs to approach the bed, they are absolutely making life difficult for the nurse. When a labor nurse attempts to get a blue, limp baby to a warmer to start bagging and compressions, and the family physically blocks her in order to get a "first picture with granny!" then they are intentionally hindering care. None of these situations are hypotheticals, they all happened to me. I DO NOT CARE if it is the first exposure someone has had to hospitilzation and illness, people should still know how to act in public. I'm talking about basic human courtesy! Just because one is a nurse does not mean one has to, in the interest of professionalism, lay down and become a door mat.

    Just recently in Birmingham, AL, a man shot 3 people because he was ticked off at a nurse. I'm sure you, in your infinite wisdom, would probably blame the nurse for being burned out and uncaring(poor, poor homicidal maniac, he didn't understand healthcare, was scared, and the nurses were sooo mean to him!), while the rest of the sane people in the world realize that this is the exact kind of family nurses get frustrated with all the time. The family that is threatening you one day because you won't bring them a snack is the the family that's actually acting on the threat when they see they can get away with all sorts of appalling behavior.
    Love this post!
    cindjo717 likes this.

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  2. 2
    Yes, I recently had the pleasure of having a family member hover outside the room and harass me to come give a water flush to her dear mom through her peg tube while I was giving qhour pain meds to a patient who was actively dying. Now mind you, her mom was perfectly fine and needed nothing else. She just wanted me to leave the dying gentleman and do that task immediately. Even after explanation that this patient needed me RIGHT NOW.


    People are obnoxious and do not care about others.
    uRNmyway and jrwest like this.
  3. 0
    Can someone tell me WHY we can't speak back to patients or families when they make our day so difficult or scream at us ? I also don't see why a nurse can't defend herself when a patient starts choking or beating her up. Where is it a written law that we cannot defend ourselves physically and verbally when attacked? Seriously does anyone know if there's a law?
  4. 0
    Quote from bTRUE
    Can someone tell me WHY we can't speak back to patients or families when they make our day so difficult or scream at us ? I also don't see why a nurse can't defend herself when a patient starts choking or beating her up. Where is it a written law that we cannot defend ourselves physically and verbally when attacked? Seriously does anyone know if there's a law?
    Here are the known laws which make it a felony to assault nurses: http://www.ena.org/IENR/Documents/St...d%20Felony.pdf

    If families, pts are unruly, use assertive desecalation techniques, get charge. If escalating, you can always let them know the laws and give then the choice to calm down or go out in handcuffs...it is really that simple, especially if you learn how to verbally descalate pts, you really don't have to go that far.

    I can recall stopping a demented pt's blow of hitting my chest...I told her that she could go to jail be side of assault. Was a ***** at the rest if her stay and got off 1:1...somewhere was the rationale part of her mind still functioning.
  5. 0
    @ladyfree, wow VERY happy you shared that information. This is real stuff they don't teach you in school but definitely should. The hard truth is , we deal with all personalities and sometimes the VERY difficult. It's necessary to know our rights before a situation explodes. Thank you very much and I bet your advice will prove to come in handy in my future nursing career and potentially keep a pt from threatening me with a knife again .
  6. 0
    Quote from bTRUE
    @ladyfree, wow VERY happy you shared that information. This is real stuff they don't teach you in school but definitely should. The hard truth is , we deal with all personalities and sometimes the VERY difficult. It's necessary to know our rights before a situation explodes. Thank you very much and I bet your advice will prove to come in handy in my future nursing career and potentially keep a pt from threatening me with a knife again .
    No problem...forewarned is forearmed, even when you are helping people. I have cared for many shades of people..,you never know what you are going to get!
  7. 0
    Quote from bTRUE
    Can someone tell me WHY we can't speak back to patients or families when they make our day so difficult or scream at us ? I also don't see why a nurse can't defend herself when a patient starts choking or beating her up. Where is it a written law that we cannot defend ourselves physically and verbally when attacked? Seriously does anyone know if there's a law?
    Because words are words.....you shouldn't participate in a shouting match with people who are obviously beneath you....professionally and intellectually

    However, you absolutely may protect yourself if being attacked but that doesn't mean the little old lady who is confused you can shove to the ground and call the police.


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