The Disrespect Of Nurses - page 3

I was at my workplace earlier this month when my supervisor told me about a volatile situation that was unfolding on a different floor between another nurse and a verbally abusive family member. This... Read More

  1. by   muffin_
    I work in palliative care, so we have a lot of families who aren't coping well and blame the nurses and other staff for their loved ones illness. I had one particular situation where one family member was yelling at me at 6 am at the nursing station because I went into their room to give routine pain medication and it woke him up. It was waking up other patients and family members and I was not able to control the situation, so the charge nurse came and talked to him, completely defending me and explained to him that even though in our unit family is welcome 24/7, it is NOT a place to expect a good nights sleep and why it was necessary for me to be in the room. I also had other patients family members ask me later on if I was okay, and say that they wanted to step in but didn't feel like it was their place, because they could hear the whole thing from their own rooms. It was very nice to have the charge nurse take my side and I think that it really turned into a more positive experience regarding confrontation with family members!
  2. by   PMFB-RN
    Quote from TheCommuter
    I was at my workplace earlier this month when my supervisor told me about a volatile situation that was unfolding on a different floor between another nurse and a verbally abusive family member. This particular family member was at the bedside for twelve hours straight and refused to leave when gently prompted. She was confrontational, hollering, taking pictures with her cellular phone, and interfering with procedures that needed to be performed on the patient. Nothing seemed to please her.

    And guess what? The verbally abusive family member was coddled by management and allowed to stay well beyond the visiting hours that other visitors are expected to follow. I suppose the old saying applies in this situation: “The squeaky wheel gets the grease.” Too many members of the public know that they can act like loudmouthed fools, behave disrespectfully toward nursing staff, and basically get away with it.
    *** Let me guess, a Magnet hospital? That family memeber would not have been tolerated in my hospital. I wouldn't work for a hospital with so little reguard for it's staff.

    Quote from TheCommuter
    I clearly recall another instance of blatant disrespect at the same workplace. A group of surly family members were yelling obscenities and threats at the floor nurse and supervisor after being informed that the patient contracted a urinary tract infection: “You haven’t seen crazy until you’ve seen me!” “I will put my foot up your ass!” “You’d better get my mother out of this place before I get you out of the way!” To keep a long story short, the patient was sent to another hospital to receive the same intravenous antibiotics that my workplace had been providing.
    *** Wow so that hospital has a tract record of throwing it's staff under a bus. I would be out of there.
    Last edit by TheCommuter on Oct 27, '12 : Reason: quotation tags
  3. by   citylights89
    Why is it when you go to workplace all the rights that you are entitled for yourself as a citizen, as a human being are denied? Shoot, I'm not about to have anyone threaten me. I will call security or the cops because if there is no one going to stick up for me, I need to do it myself. They need to quit making places of employment like abusive relationships!
  4. by   wooh
    Quote from caregiver1977
    What if someone is physically abusing a nurse and in the process someone else gets hurt as well?
    Blame the nurse! I've always been told by managers that everything will be fine if the nurses would just use better therapeutic communication.
  5. by   SaoirseRN
    One of my favourite doctors discharged his patient once for being completely incompliant with care and very rude/inappropriate with the nurses.

    He said, "If that's how he choses to be, we won't keep him here."
  6. by   shallrn
    I was charge nurse on night shift a couple of years back when our PCA came running down the hall saying the patient in room 8 was threatening to beat up one of the nurses. This 6'4", 240 pound patient was threatening and poking his nurse in the chest when I arrived. I stepped between him and his nurse and told him that his behavior will not be tolerated and that if he does not immediately desist security will be called. At this point I became his target and he punched me in the side of my head. I grabbed him, to defend myself from another punch, and we went all over the room I am 20 years older than him and was tiring quickly. I was finally able to get him in a headlock and hold him down on the other bed in the room (thank God no one was in it) until security arrived. I believe this was the beginning of my hatred of nursing. Working long, hard hours, getting no respect or appreciation from management or patients has taken its toll on me. We are highly trained professionals trying to do the best we can but are looked at as nothing but waiters and waitresses by patients and expenses that need to be cut by management. At the hospital where I work our PTO is going to be cut by 72 hours a year. Management is very concerned about patient satisfaction surveys because of reimbursement issues but refuses to do the thing, in my opinion that would help the most, which is to have proper staffing so you will have time to give patients the attention they require. I know my comment rambles on some but I feel better after doing it.
  7. by   sonia211
    This is 1 of the many reasons I have been looking for different Nursing jobs AWAY from the bedside. It has become obvious to me that nurses are no more than assistants to Drs. We are held responsible for all kinds of ridiculous things which mgmt thinks helps save money. We recently got another email from our CEO telling us how budget cuts could mean wage cuts for all of us in the future. However its funny to note that mgmt does NOT get included in any of these salary cuts. Instead if anything they always get a raise to help encourage them to make the hospital moooooore money. Mgmt has Noooooooooooo idea what we do at the bedside and they don't care as long as the hospital continues to make money we mean nothing to them. If firing a nurse makes for better customer service they don't mind because they know that there are 15 new grads waiting for that job. Funny thing those new grads don't even last 1 year before they turn around and enroll in NP school to get away from the bedside.

    We go to school to learn so much and do more than this yet we have become a task-oriented profession who are not allowed to think or act autonomously. It is very depressing.
    My hospital pays low and doesn't treat their staff too well so when they have a high census and call nurses to do extra shifts NO ONE shows up. I am only here for the experience but now I too am looking to get out of bedside.
    I already told my manager i am tired of bedside nursing and am going back to school to do something different. She told me you're smart and can do it so go for it! She knows what bedside is like and totally supports my moving forward.
  8. by   TheCommuter
    Quote from PMFB-RN
    *** Let me guess, a Magnet hospital? That family memeber would not have been tolerated in my hospital. I wouldn't work for a hospital with so little reguard for it's staff.
    Nope, it's not a magnet facility by a long shot. It's not even a general acute care hospital.
    Quote from PMFB-RN
    *** Wow so that hospital has a tract record of throwing it's staff under a bus. I would be out of there.
    Unfortunately, I cannot just 'get out of there' because I live in a large metro area with a local employment market that is glutted with too many nurses and too few nursing jobs. Although I have been applying for jobs out of state, I am at a keen disadvantage because I possess the wrong mix of experience.
  9. by   anotherone
    typicAl blame the victim garbage. wow some of your (multiple posters) patients should be on a locked psych ward. it is a typical customer service job but about a million times worse on the customer is always right mantra. Most of our management also believes if a pt or visitor is rude or disrespectful or hostile or combative it must be the nurse's fault somehow. must not have communicated right, bedside report will fix it , not responding to pain , (as if i can order the dilaudid ivp ) on and on.
  10. by   suga_junkie
    I work in a private hospital in Australia (so similar to the US system where the hospital is running a business as opposed to public hospitals here) and that sort of behavior would never fly. Security would be called and patients can be and have been banned from the hospital for being violent. We have had security guard patients due to aggressive behavior related to their medical condition (e.g we had a patient with steroid induced psychosis so they couldn't really help their behavior) to protect the nurses. I don't believe this is a universal problem and it seems most likely related to the US system where profit appears to be the bottom line in healthcare.
  11. by   conroenurse
    Sad to say I witnessed a medical student and a nurse fall down elevator shaft while dealing with a violent patient. The Medical student died, the nurse paralized for life. I try to remember that when your dealing with patients, families, there are all kinds of family traditions, family drama going on, and nerves are high at times when family member is hospitalized......
  12. by   conroenurse
    Really? You don't think money is the bottom line at your hospitals and health care systems in other countries. Really? You draw a pay ck correct? All your support team draws pay ck's right? Money for equipment, drugs.....surely that is not given free of charge.
  13. by   JZ_RN
    Patients who tell me that I "work for them"... no, I care for you, and for many others, and I work for the hospital.

    Patients who are physically abusive, happened many times.

    Patients who tell me, isn't it your job to do this for me? (Wiping, handling food issues, getting tv remotes, fixing things like a repair man, and best of all, getting a ride for them LOL)

    Patients who demand things for free that cost money. I don't get paid nearly enough to help you out people.