What is the correct title? - page 5

by Redriver 4,956 Views | 47 Comments

Hello, I am a medical student about to graduate and start residency, and I have a question. I always felt it was rude for doctors to call a nurse by their first name, and before I start residency at a new hospital I wanted to ask... Read More


  1. 3
    you may call me ma'am.
    just kidding...
    most nurses are pretty informal relative to titles,
    just smile and be nice to us...
    KelRN215, LadyFlamez, and nursej22 like this.
  2. 0
    I work in a teaching hospital. Most of our residents (okay all that I work with) are referred to by their first name or a nickname of some sort. Most of our attendings are referred to with title unless they have a preference otherwise. Most other staff members are referred to using their first name.

    I would agree with others, it can vary based on generation, region of the country, etc. I would see how your senior residents address nurses and ask the nurses you work with what their preference is. I say see what your senior residents do - I learned a lot about some of our attendings based on how my coworkers handled interacting with them.
  3. 0
    In the old days everyone knew us... the NURSE...period!
  4. 0
    Address me respectfully, that is all I ask. I promise to do the same for you.

    Nurse, Nurse Do-over, Ms. LastName, Ms Do-over, Do-over, Miss, Ma'am. They all work for me.
  5. 1
    Quote from SaoirseRN
    I would not like that, actually, so I would not suggest doing that. I honestly just prefer the use of my first name.
    We do it all the time. You may not like it, but that doesn't mean that should be applied to everyone else. I know lots of people that like having miss-first name. I think it is a respect for your elders type of thing. A nurse that has been around for 40 year has the right to be formally addressed if they wish.
    Do-over likes this.
  6. 0
    Quote from hodgieRN

    We do it all the time. You may not like it, but that doesn't mean that should be applied to everyone else. I know lots of people that like having miss-first name. I think it is a respect for your elders type of thing. A nurse that has been around for 40 year has the right to be formally addressed if they wish.
    I think that's a geographical thing, because nurses here, even the forty year veterans, would not like that. I guess I didn't clarify that in my comment but I meant don't automatically say Miss or Mr. That might be the norm where you are and that is absolutely fine, but that isn't the case where I am from
  7. 0
    Quote from SaoirseRN
    I think that's a geographical thing, because nurses here, even the forty year veterans, would not like that. I guess I didn't clarify that in my comment but I meant don't automatically say Miss or Mr. That might be the norm where you are and that is absolutely fine, but that isn't the case where I am from
    I agree that it is a geographical thing. I've only ever been called "Ms. Kel" by people from the south. No one calls anyone "Ms. or Mr. First Name" where I'm from and, as I said in a previous post, other than teachers in grade school/high school, I've called adults/my elders by their first name for my entire life. I've worked with nurses older than my parents and I've only ever called them by their first name. My [pediatric] patients all call me by my first name and I have no expectation that they would ever call me anything else.
  8. 0
    Quote from KelRN215

    I agree that it is a geographical thing. I've only ever been called "Ms. Kel" by people from the south. No one calls anyone "Ms. or Mr. First Name" where I'm from and, as I said in a previous post, other than teachers in grade school/high school, I've called adults/my elders by their first name for my entire life. I've worked with nurses older than my parents and I've only ever called them by their first name. My [pediatric] patients all call me by my first name and I have no expectation that they would ever call me anything else.
    Further to this, while I understand that in some parts of the word, calling me Miss Saoirse would be considered respectful in a professional sense, around here, the only person who ever called me Miss Saoirse was my grandma when I was a little girl, and that is an entirely different form of address that implies a completely different thing.

    I suppose the gist of all this is what others have said -- see what the norm is when first arriving at the hospital, and if all else fails, "Hello, I'm Dr. Red. You can call me THIS, what would you like me to call you?"


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