Our jobs as nurses is to protect/help/serve the doctors. - page 2

by thesundowner

3,731 Views | 26 Comments

As a nurse, it is my job to ensure that the admitting doctor and all of the consults accurately assess the patients, order the correct labs, order the correct meds, read the consults notes, and do not miss anything with the... Read More


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    Our floor just hired a ton of new nurses and it is a big teaching hospital. The other night I was paging non stop and many drs called back to say , " what do you do in this situation?" , " is this what they typically do ?" Blind leading the blind and last month's intern is this weeks "upper level".
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    Quote from amoLucia
    Hey Dixie - any chance that PA was impaired the other nite??? All those kinds of errors point to a practitioner with probems?

    I second the opinions of the other posters.
    I do wonder if he was impaired (nothing obvious except of course his actions). He is fairly new and I have not been impressed with his judgement. He is sloppy and careless with the way he practices, and that is NOT acceptable. I went to one of the ED docs who is responsible for the PA's and explained what was happening. I am not the only one to point this out and we are documenting. I work in a very busy trauma center (120,000 pts/yr) so these kinds don't last long.

    As I stated earlier, I do not advocate that nurses are here to protect the doctors. The original poster was being facetious and I followed in that vein. I have NEVER been afraid to call a doc on orders that are dangerous or just erroneously written (Like Rx for Vicodin 1 GM IV written by a very tired doc).

    The nurses have a wonderful, trusting relationship with our ED providers and we have each other's back but we will not tolerate incompetence or poor practice.
    Tragically Hip likes this.
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    Quote from dixielee
    i saw a t-shirt once that said, "thank a nurse! they are the ones who keep doctors from killing you".
    Quote from grntea
    if you think about it, all those things are really protecting the patient from inept physicians. we're not protecting physicians by doing all those things. we're protecting patients. you are absolutely not obligated to implement a wrong order. the reverse is true-- you are mandated not to implemement a blatantly wrong order.
    this whole "we protect patient's from those stupid, mean doctors" mantra has probably been one of the most annoying things i've encountered in medical training so far.

    you'd be surprised how often we residents and attendings protect the patients from nursing errors. i don't think i've gone a single day in the hospital this past year w/o fixing/preventing a mistake made by a nurse and this was fairly common during my two years of rotations during med school also (i'm a pgy-2 now). the number of nursing mistakes at every single hospital i've rotated through so far has far exceeded those made by physicians. the difference is that we doctor's only discuss this stuff in the physician's lounge and don't go around wearing shirts telling the public that we protect them from other healthcare workers' mistakes.

    i feel like physicians are the only ones who get any training regarding working in a health-care team these days. everyone else seems to be competing against each other, which is absolutely ridiculous in a clinical setting.

    Quote from pmfb-rn
    not me. what i do i do for my patients. in my view the rns job is to heal the patient. the physicians job is to diagnose, and in the case of surgeons, do surgery. i heal them, or failing that assist them to the highest level of functioning possible for them, or failing that help them die as comfortably as possible. they are _my_ patients.


    yea, no. my job isn't to just diagnose or just do surgery and then leave the rest of the care to someone else. i "heal" patients just as much as you do. don't make judgments about my job when you don't have any experience with it and i won't make any about yours. it's that simple. also, considering that physicians (and independent practitioners) are ultimately responsible for signing off on all patient care, they're actually my patients.
    Szasz_is_Right and anotherone like this.
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    And it's my job to say amen sister.. great observation... and doesn't it suck?
    Marisette likes this.
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    yes, it sucks. If a doctor makes a mistake, it's the nurse's responsibility to "correct " it. If a nurse erroneously follows the order, the nurse is fired. It's the nurses fault.
    SoldierNurse22 and wooh like this.
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    I think the original poster hit a nerve, while trying to be funny probably had a lot of truth, and the PGY-2 Doctor did a good observation too. Mistakes goes both ways.

    I can not say more then this. I am not a nurse yet. I was a patient in the ER a few weeks ago, and I can say the Doctor knew exactly what to give me, and was there monitoring the nurse while she was giving me the medication. Without either, I wouldn't have felt safe. Both are important to patients. Speaking from a patients point of view. Both are very needed, and most patients love both the nurses and the doctors.
    Szasz_is_Right and studentdrtobe like this.
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    We protect the patients first and foremost and prevent any harm that may come to them because of some blatant mistake a doctor may make and of course it is a thankless job. I said that to myself the other day when the doctor almost operated on the wrong site in the O.R suite while I was screaming at them because apparently no one assesses their patients anymore prior to coming to the O.R. they just look at their order and just say ok and mark a site without even talking to them before surgery. I was not thanked for keeping their asses out of court nor could they even look at me. I am a proud patient advocate.
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    Three guys found a genie. The genie told them they could split the three wishes and each get one wish. The first guy said, "I want to be smart" and poof, the guy turned into an anesthesiologist. The second guy said, "I want to be ever smarter" and poof, the second guy turned into a neurosurgeon. The third guy said, "I want to be smarter than both of them" and poof, the third guy turned into an RN.
    SoldierNurse22, barbyann, and wooh like this.
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    When I had major cervical spine surgery it wasn't a nurse that healed me. It was a very caring Neurosurgeon who performed the surgery that made me feel better. As for the nurses that I encountered during my 2-day hospitalization the one that was assigned to me the first night was too busy to look in on me and she even said she felt like she was neglecting me. She did find the time to talk LOUDLY with other nurses at the nurses station about her weekend plans(this one nurse literally had a big mouth and there was no mistaken her voice) In the process she and the other nurses kept me awake the whole night. Then I had to deal with some snotty CNA the next day. The nurse I had that day was very nice and made up for the other two. I gave her a big hug and a "thank you" when I was discharged the next day.

    Funny what a cervical collar can do for you. When I went to the ER after my surgery for unrelated problems I was treated better by the nurses then when I went last summer while in excruciating pain from my cervical spine problem. Even more amusing is being treated by some of the doctors who treated me as if I was a drug seeker last summer. The look on their faces was just priceless-I guess there REALLY was something wrong with me.
    Szasz_is_Right and studentdrtobe like this.
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    Quote from Poochiewoochie
    Funny what a cervical collar can do for you. When I went to the ER after my surgery for unrelated problems I was treated better by the nurses then when I went last summer while in excruciating pain from my cervical spine problem. Even more amusing is being treated by some of the doctors who treated me as if I was a drug seeker last summer. The look on their faces was just priceless-I guess there REALLY was something wrong with me.
    That's a fair critique. Unfortunately, it's all too common to encounter drug seekers in the ED. I feel like it's to the point where patients are assumed to be drug seekers unless proven otherwise.
    anotherone likes this.


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