Nurses who let NAs Boss them around - page 10

When will nurses ever learn to delegate? When will nurses ever collectively stand up and get some backbone--Fight for higher wages, and better benefits like a company matching 401K plan? I get sick... Read More

  1. by   Neicee
    Quote from PhePhe
    When will nurses ever learn to delegate? When will nurses ever collectively stand up and get some backbone--Fight for higher wages, and better benefits like a company matching 401K plan?
    I get sick when I work at institutions (I am an agency nurse) and I see the Nurses aides doing whatever they want when they want--unlimited breaks, breaks all at once together leaving the floor uncovered, flat out refusing to answer lights or doing a task.
    Its no wonder nurses are leaving the profession in droves. Management appears to be scared to approach the NAs too, but have no trouble when it comes to chastizing an RN. Whenever I ask an RN why they tolerate a situation, the response is always the same--management lets them get away with it. I have returned to Nursing after 13 years of working in a business setting. Not much has changed. PT, Pharmacists, and OT have all manged to get substancial financial increases while many nurses are still making $21 bucks an hour. I don't allow NAs to get the best of me, and all I get for my trouble is even more resentment. Not all NAs are like this but I will go out on a limb and say the lack of RN delegation and management skills are detrimental to the professionof nurses.
    Phe Phe, RN, BSN, MBA
    I must agree with you Phe Phe. I have left bedside nursing to a Nursing Coordinator's position for the very reason you have listed. I even considered leaving nursing after many long shifts and no help. I have worked for some military hospitals that will not even staff NA's or PCT's. There rationale is the nurse can do it all! I hope more nurses will stand up and not tolerate this type of treatment.

    Neicee, RN, BSN
  2. by   virmm1
    What I want to know is : Are most of the DONs in these facilities former NAs? or Is it just management in general that lets CNAs run the place. One of the LTC facilities I worked in the RN supervisor was a CNA before becoming an RN and we, the LPN's had to help the aides make two rounds in addition to doing our own work. The aides were actually doing 2 rounds on their own. It was a small facility and there was 1 aid for 8 residents. This was on 11-7. Its not like the rounds were killer rounds or anything.
    Another small facility where I worked the DON ws a former CNA. Most of the CNAs there on 11-7 were sorry too. Forget about diciplining one of them, the DON wouldn't do anything to them if they were written up. The majority of the aides had the authority problem. Many of them would remind you that they're grown but yet they didn't want to have to work. I don't think any of the nurses could ask an aide to do something and not get attitude. Also at this facility if an aide didn't want to work on her assigned unit she would think nothing of calling the DON at 11:30, 12:00 AM to get her to change the assignment. RIDICULOUS!

    I am now back in LTC after a 7 yr break. While most of the CNAs do their jobs there are still ones who think they should be paid for just showing up. I have heard from other nurses that nothing is done when the aides are written up at this facility either. The recently former DON ws a former CNA also. We have just gotten a new DON, just started last Monday.I am waiting to see how she is. I heard one of our aides telling some of the others that she worked w/ this RN before and she is a B****. I'm hoping thats a good thing. I too am tired of call lights not being answered and rsds not being taken to the bathroom after meals when the rsd requests to go. Because" I just took them" before whatever mealtime it happens to be. When I can I help the aides by toileting rsds and answering call lights but the skilled hall I work has heavy med passes and short of an emergency I will not interupt the med pass.
    If caring about rsds and pts make me a B****then so be it.
    Last edit by virmm1 on Oct 19, '04
  3. by   Town & Country
    You know, I have heard nurses aides say that the nurse HAS to help, and just because they are an RN doesn't mean they don't have to do patient care anymore. Yes, nurses are supposed to help, but they have other duties that the nurses aides do not. The nurses aides do not have to pass meds, check charts, do treatments, accuchecks, IV /IV meds etc. So why is a nurse supposed to do half the nurses aide job plus all the other professional duties? The acuity is so much higher now than it used to be, whether hospital or LTC facility. This logic doen't make sense.
    Why can't the nurses aide get another nurses aide to help, when the other one is not busy? Why do they have to "wait" for the nurse? In my opinion this is done on purpose, as I have heard many NAs talk about the "nurse who thinks she's too good for patient care".
    Preach it, sister!
    This is done deliberately, and for spite, plain and simple.

    The good CNAs are the salt of the earth, and wonderful to work with. They're out there.

    But I have worked a couple of LTC facilities where the CNAs LITERALLY ran the place.

    THEIR concerns always merited a "meeting".
    If they had to do their jobs, they were being "picked on." If you didn't do at least half of their work (not to mention your own), you "weren't helping," and "you're not a team player!"

    Nevermind that they take ten smoke breaks per night while you are running up and down the hall, giving meds and doing treatments.

    Just another reason I will NEVER work LTC again.
  4. by   General E. Speaking, RN
    When do nurses ever get to say "I don't have time" like the NA's do? Some of our nurse aides hide on the floor...avoiding the pt call lights. Or worse the secretary answering the light calls you stating "your patient needs you" only to discover they need a straw, blanket, etc...
  5. by   Marie_LPN, RN
    Heard nurses say 'i don't have the time' as they flipped though the latest Avon catalog.

    My point being, it sometimes goes both ways.
  6. by   General E. Speaking, RN
    Quote from Marie_LPN
    Heard nurses say 'i don't have the time' as they flipped though the latest Avon catalog.

    My point being, it sometimes goes both ways.
    true, I have worked with nurses like that-but it is frustrating to me because I am not one of those nurses.
  7. by   Marie_LPN, RN
    It's frustrating to me because i was never one of those aides, and not one of those nurses.
  8. by   HAngel
    Quote from PhePhe
    When will nurses ever learn to delegate? When will nurses ever collectively stand up and get some backbone--Fight for higher wages, and better benefits like a company matching 401K plan?
    I get sick when I work at institutions (I am an agency nurse) and I see the Nurses aides doing whatever they want when they want--unlimited breaks, breaks all at once together leaving the floor uncovered, flat out refusing to answer lights or doing a task.
    Its no wonder nurses are leaving the profession in droves. Management appears to be scared to approach the NAs too, but have no trouble when it comes to chastizing an RN. Whenever I ask an RN why they tolerate a situation, the response is always the same--management lets them get away with it. I have returned to Nursing after 13 years of working in a business setting. Not much has changed. PT, Pharmacists, and OT have all manged to get substancial financial increases while many nurses are still making $21 bucks an hour. I don't allow NAs to get the best of me, and all I get for my trouble is even more resentment. Not all NAs are like this but I will go out on a limb and say the lack of RN delegation and management skills are detrimental to the professionof nurses.
    Phe Phe, RN, BSN, MBA
    WOW!!! To this entire board!! I can't imagine getting away with that behavior... I've gone 12-15 hours without more than potty breaks every 6 or so... no lunch or anything... not common, but we really don't get breaks, we're lucky to get lunch!! I expect that if I'm busy with the tasks I've been assigned that a nurse will pitch in and help grab a light, but gosh, that bhvr is ridiculous!!!! I don't even see why mgmt would keep people like that!! Why pay someone to be a warm body????

    Hangel
  9. by   celticqueen
    Quote from PhePhe
    When will nurses ever learn to delegate? When will nurses ever collectively stand up and get some backbone--Fight for higher wages, and better benefits like a company matching 401K plan?
    I get sick when I work at institutions (I am an agency nurse) and I see the Nurses aides doing whatever they want when they want--unlimited breaks, breaks all at once together leaving the floor uncovered, flat out refusing to answer lights or doing a task.
    Its no wonder nurses are leaving the profession in droves. Management appears to be scared to approach the NAs too, but have no trouble when it comes to chastizing an RN. Whenever I ask an RN why they tolerate a situation, the response is always the same--management lets them get away with it. I have returned to Nursing after 13 years of working in a business setting. Not much has changed. PT, Pharmacists, and OT have all manged to get substancial financial increases while many nurses are still making $21 bucks an hour. I don't allow NAs to get the best of me, and all I get for my trouble is even more resentment. Not all NAs are like this but I will go out on a limb and say the lack of RN delegation and management skills are detrimental to the professionof nurses.
    Phe Phe, RN, BSN, MBA
    I'm sorry, but in my experience NA's are worthwhile and valuable members of the workforce. They work hard. I'm not denying that there are a few lazy ones, but i have come across lazy nurses too.To say that nurses are leaving the job partly because of them is so short-sighted and inaccurate, try blaming the pay and conditions?

    You are an agency nurse, and they get alot of flack from regular staff and i know that agency nurses are generaly held in less regard than regular staff and this isn't right. Agency nurses are portayed as lazy as well, which is sometimes the case and sometimes not. It depends on the individual. You cannot justify tarring everybody with the same brush.

    Emma :hatparty:
  10. by   LPN1974
    I know there are lazy NA's and lazy nurses, but I am NOT a lazy nurse, and I DID quit my part time job at a LTC because of the aides. I got sick of dealing with NA's who would habitually be late coming in. There were some who would be late every night...supposed to be there at 11PM and make it just in time to do their rounds at 1:00 am. What they didn't realize if they didn't show up within a few minutes of 11:00pm, that we were counted short for the whole night. It really made things very hard. These aides who did that did not have a telehone for me to call them, so I spent a good part of the beginning of my shift trying to get ahold of them some other way, and then, lo, and behold they show up just before 1:00am. How convenient is that?
    Then I had aides who would disappear and sleep half the night, I'd have to spend time looking for them, and find them in a room, lights out, curtain drawn, in bed or piled up in a chair. Then the aides who b*****d about the assigments, and did not want to work a certain end of the hall. I got soooooo sick of it. I QUIT! Yes, that was a big part of why I quit.
    I still have my primary job, full time, where my benefits are, but the LTC job was nice to have for the extra money. But it just got to be not worth the hassle of fighting with the aides. Administration would not do anything about it. The ones I wrote up for sleeping, got fired and then guess what???? They would get hired back in a month or two. It is a never ending cycle.
    Until administration themselves get some backbone, and agrees to back up the nurse who is having to deal with this first hand, and fire these aides, nothing will ever change. The NA's need to be put on notice that this will follow them wherever they go.
    I worked as NA when I first started out in nursing, for about 2 years altogether, I came to work on time, did the assigment I was assigned, no matter how hard or how nasty it was, and was there on the days I was supposed to be there.
    I started out making about 1.67/hr, back in 1971-72, and it wasn't much, but I was making my own money, and I loved it.
  11. by   celticqueen
    Quote from LPN1974
    I know there are lazy NA's and lazy nurses, but I am NOT a lazy nurse, and I DID quit my part time job at a LTC because of the aides. I got sick of dealing with NA's who would habitually be late coming in. There were some who would be late every night...supposed to be there at 11PM and make it just in time to do their rounds at 1:00 am. What they didn't realize if they didn't show up within a few minutes of 11:00pm, that we were counted short for the whole night. It really made things very hard. These aides who did that did not have a telehone for me to call them, so I spent a good part of the beginning of my shift trying to get ahold of them some other way, and then, lo, and behold they show up just before 1:00am. How convenient is that?
    Then I had aides who would disappear and sleep half the night, I'd have to spend time looking for them, and find them in a room, lights out, curtain drawn, in bed or piled up in a chair. Then the aides who b*****d about the assigments, and did not want to work a certain end of the hall. I got soooooo sick of it. I QUIT! Yes, that was a big part of why I quit.
    I still have my primary job, full time, where my benefits are, but the LTC job was nice to have for the extra money. But it just got to be not worth the hassle of fighting with the aides. Administration would not do anything about it. The ones I wrote up for sleeping, got fired and then guess what???? They would get hired back in a month or two. It is a never ending cycle.
    Until administration themselves get some backbone, and agrees to back up the nurse who is having to deal with this first hand, and fire these aides, nothing will ever change. The NA's need to be put on notice that this will follow them wherever they go.
    I worked as NA when I first started out in nursing, for about 2 years altogether, I came to work on time, did the assigment I was assigned, no matter how hard or how nasty it was, and was there on the days I was supposed to be there.
    I started out making about 1.67/hr, back in 1971-72, and it wasn't much, but I was making my own money, and I loved it.
    ok so you left your job because of the NA's, which i'm sorry about; however is it THAT common? i've never come across it. You had the bad luck of working with irresponsible and lazy individuals - which is what i was trying to get across. The problem is the individual(s). I worked as a care assistant (same thing as an NA) for 10 years before starting my training. I have had the opportunity to work in both nursing homes and hospitals. In one place i worked at, the dep.matron actually walked out at the start of the shift leaving me (who was 16 at the time) and another care assistant (who had just started) to look after 40 residents on our own - because their was a stomach bug going round and the rest of the staff had called in sick and she wasn't prepared to handle it. We could not get hold of the matron as she had taken the keys home with her and the office door was locked with the staff numbers in. The two of use looked after 40 residents until the night staff came on at 8. So, again i'm making my point even deputy matrons can be as irresponsable as the rest of them - but in this case she broke the law. Blame the individual and not the rest of the team

    Emma :hatparty:
  12. by   tiroka03
    I am seeing two sides to the problem. First, some Nars have no respect for the nurses because they have been shown none. Other Nars are just plain lazy. I see a lot of really good nars who are so great. Others are not.


    I started out working on a 36 bed unit with an LPN and an RN. This hummed along well. Now I work on a 36 bed unit with me and LPN and 2 nars. You would think it would be easier, more staff. But, actually it is more difficult.

    First I have the work of both nurses, only fair, since their are 2 nars to do the work of the combined previous team. You would think the nars would be happy, but most aren't.

    So, in the interest of "fairness" I do a lot of call light answering and bottom wiping, while the aids complain they are the harder working person.

    I say who cares, I am here for 8 hours just like you. During the years I have worked with these aides, I have tried to set a positive example by working hard, and they have come around somewhat. I try to do first rounds with them, for two reason.

    one: I get to see the pts and see for myself their condiditon for the night.
    two: It tends to keep the aides at bay who report every little imagined thing wrong with the pts, causing me extra work to check out the aides unfounded ideas.

    Usually if an aid is treated with respect, they get to the point they will work harder for you.

    I find that the more through job done on our first round reaps benifits. The pts sleep better and wake less. Then we do experience a little down time. Not often, but if an aide comes to work exhusted, or something has emotionally drug them down, I will allow them extra breaks. I have been known to allow a hurting aid with mentraul cramps to lie down, while we pamper her for an hour or so with warm compresses and tylenol. If its quite why not? Compassion for each other really goes along way.

    I let my newly pregant aides have extra potty breaks, and suggest rest when the nausea hits, it's only human. I will volunteer to do as many as I can of the people BM people, wiping up a butt, or vomit. I will take on their work during that down time, I don't expect the other aid to do that, although they usually volunteer to help too, as they have had the help too.

    A migraine headache, yet, rest with the lights out for an hour or so. We will pull you out if it gets out of hand, otherwise rest.

    Not always, but the system will pay off. People like to work were they are appreciated and stood up for. I expect the same compassion back. And I get it. No, we don't tell management what we do, and we watch each others back. Management wouldn't approve of treating staff like people, that I can quarentee.

    As for people who still insist on being lazy, I have ways to make them sorry they tried. I am a giving person, but only so much. I have worked hard to be an example, a leader. But, there are aides than can try the best of us. These people find extra chores assigned to them. They find the worst of the worst called to their duty rooster. And I insist it being done. After a week or so of this, most of them settle down, and want to be treated, "fairly". I tell them, what comes around goes around.

    Just try coming in with a headache, and being treated kindly, it goes a long long way.
  13. by   LPN1974
    Quote from Emma-Jane Farmer
    ok so you left your job because of the NA's, which i'm sorry about; however is it THAT common? i've never come across it. You had the bad luck of working with irresponsible and lazy individuals - which is what i was trying to get across. The problem is the individual(s). I worked as a care assistant (same thing as an NA) for 10 years before starting my training. I have had the opportunity to work in both nursing homes and hospitals. In one place i worked at, the dep.matron actually walked out at the start of the shift leaving me (who was 16 at the time) and another care assistant (who had just started) to look after 40 residents on our own - because their was a stomach bug going round and the rest of the staff had called in sick and she wasn't prepared to handle it. We could not get hold of the matron as she had taken the keys home with her and the office door was locked with the staff numbers in. The two of use looked after 40 residents until the night staff came on at 8. So, again i'm making my point even deputy matrons can be as irresponsable as the rest of them - but in this case she broke the law. Blame the individual and not the rest of the team

    Emma :hatparty:
    I have no idea how common it is, I just got tired of dealing with it at this particular place.
    I felt 2 years of trying to help change things was enough.
    And I do blame the DON and the administrator. Squarely on their shoulders. They knew it. It had been reported. When a CNA is found sleeping, is reported, fired, ACCORDING to facility policy, and then rehired a month later, how does that help things? She comes in and sleeps on the job again, and I got sick of it.
    I won't go back to the nursing homes for those reasons. Administration won't enforce their own policies...at least not at that one.

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