Wrote up a CNA, but I was the one who got the boot! - page 5

by MotherRN

11,285 Views | 54 Comments

About two weeks ago, I had an unfamiliar CNA on my night shift. She was 'helping out' with a shortage apparently. I am new on the job as well. I had previously been instructed to ''hold accountable' the CNA's on my shift by... Read More


  1. 0
    OP how long have you been a nurse?
  2. 0
    Graduated in December 2011; passed first NCLEX attempt on March 5th 2012, received license on March 7th. Started soft job search in April-just a few attempts at the online job posts at the local teaching hospital, then waited out the month for replies- nothing. In May, put in a few LTC apps in one local town. Son came home from army deployment of a year, so I took sometime with him til I started applying again in Mid June. I started getting creative then-substitute school nurse, emergency training with Red Cross, volunteering with local free clinics (was a GREAT idea-starting back up on that next week), flu clinic at Walmart, kept applying to all three hospitals etc. Then, I put in two more LTC apps in another local town. In July, I had three interviews back to back and had to juggle because I didn't know which would turn into a job. Ended up with the place I just left in August orientation til end this week.

    Bet you're wondering why I can't just answer a simple question? Would it help if I said I planned to be a writer when I was in school and studied journalism in college first? lol

    I seriously don't know what I want to do with my license so I will go back to exploring all the leads I had to put on hold when I actually started working. Plus I can finish off my semester with better grades than I started and get the spring semester set up.

    On happier news, my daughter just blew her SAT out of the water so she is a good position to hopefully find funding for her college dreams next fall. Yea!
  3. 0
    Quote from Elladora
    The first one would be grounds for dismissal where I work. The second one would just annoy me.

    Move on. Sounds like that job wasn't a great fit for you anyway.
    Who would get fired, the one who did the dumping or the one who didn't pick up the slack? I tried to do the extra stuff, but started getting in trouble for not finishing my own stuff. In the end, I just got in trouble for both anyway...'Rock and a hard place."
  4. 0
    In a NH the CNA is the backbone of the group. Hopefully you will have a good group. One thing that always worked with me is to praise your girls/guys as much as possible and help them when they are running behind or two things at once. Now to prevent taking advantage of the offer at some point let them know you will help if they need you but you have your own work to do also. I also let them know there is not one thing they do that I have not done for years. CNA was not invented for 10 yrs when I got into nursing and only some hospitals had them even then. We also had to do more with the NH Pts then as the CNAs were well overworked. They will respect you more for a kind word. They are like elephants with long memories. They never let things go. And in case you did not know nurses are one of the most backstabbing people there are. You would do well NEVER to trust anyone unless they were your childhood buddy or your very long time BFF. It will keep you out of trouble!...........Good luck with your next try....
  5. 0
    Thank you for the good advice. I did try with the CNA's to be polite. I greeted all of them, asked them nicely when I needed something, explained why something was important if I asked them for it and thanked them in advance. I'd smile at them when we crossed paths during the night and ask em how it was going. I told more than one of them that I appreciated them on more then one shift. I thanked all of them as they walked out past the nurses station at the end of shift when I was charting. I tried to be light hearted and joke with them if they were charting on the wall station if I was charting at my station. Heck, my partner nurse on the 3-11 shift, we both pitched in and bought them pizza one night. We had already planned with our regulars to pick a night we were all there to do bbq in November. And I was gonna bake something if we worked the holidays in December. We were trying to build our team up because they get dumped on just like we did by the ever critical day shift that uses the other two shifts as a scape goat for all problems. Why don't we just buy jerseys and admit we are on rival teams, for gosh sakes?!? The day shift is the favored shift because it's the DON's and unit managers shift. My problem CNA came from the day shift crew-and brought that big attitude with her. Yes, some of the CNA's on the night shift are young. And, I freely admit their job SUCKS!!! They have too many residents who have over paid for tip top service wanting to be the first on the list and reporting you when they aren't. What they don't realize is that no matter how much they paid to be there, the ration is still 9-1 CNA and 19-1 nurse or 25-1 nurse on LTC side. They did not pay for the one on one care they think they paid for. Life lesson there! Save the $100K a year and keep mom home. Bring in a nurse for the few tasks she is needed. Mom would be happier with family than stuck i some pretty decorated cell that they now call her 'home'. Get real.
  6. 0
    Quote from MotherRN
    BTW- we were classmates, but it was a large program and I never met her while in school. She's my son's age. It's a shame that we couldn't have been more of a support to one another. It was the last thing I expected when I took the job. I was glad a classmate was there because I thought we could look out for one another. Boy was I wrong!
    MotherRN- just out of curiosity, what were your grades like compared to hers? Is it possible she felt your being there was going to rock her boat and make her look bad? She probably had it out for you from the moment you walked in the door. I had this happen to me once- I was working perdeim on a stepdown unit in a hospital, this LPN was working Fulltime and got laid off. Big party booh hoo's, the whole 9 yards. I wasn't getting enough shifts so remained perdeim and I went to a LTC facilty as a part timer and low an behold who was working there. I was thrilled there was some one I knew and we had worked well together. Well, boy was I wrong. This LPN was nasty, demeaning and outright embararsing to me every chance she got. A shouting match ensured which she started out of nowhere and like you, in the med room and I was fired. This happens all over nursing. It has been allowed to go on. The majority of nursing don't even know it is wrong.
    I learned from then on - never work with an old co-worker, no matter how well your think you get along. I guess the same should hold true for old class mates. When I say nursing can't handle certain things and situations- I really do mean that. It comes from years of seeing it. i can tell you- it is NOT getting any better. I don't care how many anti bullying and civilty campaigns they push. It just makes for good press to hide the real ugly of nursing. It's to bad one has to "dumb themselves down" so someone else doesn't feel bad or look bad!! The need to go to psychiatrists and take a pill.
    Last edit by kcmylorn on Oct 26, '12
  7. 0
    Quote from MotherRN
    Thank you for the good advice. I did try with the CNA's to be polite. I greeted all of them, asked them nicely when I needed something, explained why something was important if I asked them for it and thanked them in advance. I'd smile at them when we crossed paths during the night and ask em how it was going. I told more than one of them that I appreciated them on more then one shift. I thanked all of them as they walked out past the nurses station at the end of shift when I was charting. I tried to be light hearted and joke with them if they were charting on the wall station if I was charting at my station. Heck, my partner nurse on the 3-11 shift, we both pitched in and bought them pizza one night. We had already planned with our regulars to pick a night we were all there to do bbq in November. And I was gonna bake something if we worked the holidays in December. We were trying to build our team up because they get dumped on just like we did by the ever critical day shift that uses the other two shifts as a scape goat for all problems. Why don't we just buy jerseys and admit we are on rival teams, for gosh sakes?!? The day shift is the favored shift because it's the DON's and unit managers shift. My problem CNA came from the day shift crew-and brought that big attitude with her. Yes, some of the CNA's on the night shift are young. And, I freely admit their job SUCKS!!! They have too many residents who have over paid for tip top service wanting to be the first on the list and reporting you when they aren't. What they don't realize is that no matter how much they paid to be there, the ration is still 9-1 CNA and 19-1 nurse or 25-1 nurse on LTC side. They did not pay for the one on one care they think they paid for. Life lesson there! Save the $100K a year and keep mom home. Bring in a nurse for the few tasks she is needed. Mom would be happier with family than stuck i some pretty decorated cell that they now call her 'home'. Get real.
    And who did that for you-the nurse with all the responsibility for their actions or lack there of!! After all- you passed out meds for "Their" residents, you assessed"Their" residents, you called the doctor for "Their"residents. you sidned off the admission orders for "Their" residents
  8. 0
    The only thing I know about her academics is what she told me on the first few days I shadowed her. She confessed that she was sick due to the extreme stress of our last rotation, so sick that she suffered migraines and had to be hospitalized. So, basically she fell short of making the needed 70.5 in the final course to graduate. She said they, the instructors, wouldn't give her the time of day so she went over their heads all the way up the ladder with a letter writing campaign until she was allowed to graduate from the program. I assume this means she did it a little later than the group because this effort would have taken time to reach a conclusion. I assume her grades must have been okay throughout the program or else she wouldn't have had much of a leg to stand on in her defense that it wasn't fair to fail her on so small a percentage because she had the legitimate excuse of being ill.

    As for me, I am a good student. I probably should be in education and not nursing. I have five kids that I have home schooled for the past twenty years from K-12 grade. The oldest graduated college already, my second son is a junior, my oldest daughter just aced her SAT and is applying to schools. In the nursing program, I was the student who would get A's on all the tests and thought I was gonna get an A in the class, then messed up ONE exam which always left me with an overall B. So straight B's in nursing school. I had a 4.0 when I started though and combined with my GPA on my prereqs I was able to be in the nursing honor society thankfully. She was not in the nursing honor society with me.

    My weak point is that I am somewhat mild mannered and soft spoken in public (used to be shy kid) so I have to warm up a bit. I also am nervous working with my hands when I am unsure of what I am doing whereas some are able to just jump right in and be really extroverted socially. But, my personality type is also an asset because I am sensitive to others feelings and know how to be that person you can tell anything to who won't knife you in the back later for it (like some people I know!)

    I'm having a pleasant night with the kids (even though we just watch a horrible Adam Sandler movie 'That's My Boy!") and this is my first Friday night off since Before August 31st! So, I'm feeling generous right now and somewhat charitable in my attempt to understand her behavior. She's 25. Not married yet, no kids, no prior degree. This job and a nursing school 2 year degree are probably the biggest things that have happened to her so far and her boyfriend just popped the question and they are now having a house built. Heady stuff for your mid twenties. She reminds me of one of my sister in laws who was a yuppy engineer back in the '80's. I would describe her personality as hauty. She has recently been cast in the role (in her mind at least) of "big woman on campus" at the facility because she works the day shift and mingles with the management daily. Her head is so big, it's a wonder it fits through the door in the morning. So, her idea of report is to dictate her own personal orders of what you are to do on your shift and then be upset and complain when they aren't carried out. It was just so hard to sit there during report and be talked down to and ordered about by someone my son's age! And, I knew that when I had had enough and asserted myself, I would be painted as the bad guy and in trouble for it. So, I kept quiet cause I needed the money. But, when a nurse starts acting like a doctor and telling you to do things she wants done, like D/C orders for O2, orders that did not come from a doctor, then she is operating outside of our scope and if I follow her lead, so am I. Enough.

    I don't think she knows my academic record. I wasn't asked and I didn't tell. I didn't try to intimidate her, I'm actually really comfortable with young adults. I just try to be funny and light. Couldn't say for sure what her problem was with me, but it was there from the beginning. Maybe my age made her uncomfortable and she was trying to show me we were equals by being so condescending, maybe she perceived a threat that was not there. And maybe she's just another entitled young adult in America these days with not respect for their elders. (okay, I can see if I continue, I will not be so generous afterall) so I will end on that note.
  9. 1
    Yeah, I know, it's a one way street. But a long time ago I decided I didn't want the bad behavior of others to stop me from doing what I think is right. So, I am nice anyway-even if you hate me for it or laugh behind my back after I'm gone. I don't want to live my life that way. I want to try to do the positive thing.

    You want to hear a sad, sad story? I was in a Chile's restaurant one afternoon having lunch by myself (studying) and was seated across from a mom and her son eating with the grandparents. This mother was berating her son because he had gotten involved in a case of bullying at school, and stood up for the one who was getting bullied. And, in our state, they punish both sides, not just the bully. (hem...sounds strangely familiar...but I digress) So, basically her son got in trouble as well. This mom was saying to her son, "Johnny, in this life you don't help no one with nothing. You got that, you just take care of yourself." I about fell out of the booth! I couldn't help but stare at her. Really? All hope for America is gone if we run around raising our kids with that kind of message. When I got home, I gathered my kids and told them the story. And, pointed out how wrong this was. I told them the way to live you life is this instead: "If you find someone in need and it is within your power to help them, then it is your duty to help them, provided it isn't immoral or illegal obviously."

    That's how I feel about the people at work. It doesn't really matter what they said or will say, when I was there I tried to be decent and build a team. And the evening after I was fired, and I was sure management was gone, I drove over with a pizza for the night crew and had my partner nurse come outside to get it so I could say goodbye and thanks for all his help on my first job. That's how I want to live my life.
    CloudySue likes this.
  10. 0
    Quote from MotherRN
    Who would get fired, the one who did the dumping or the one who didn't pick up the slack? I tried to do the extra stuff, but started getting in trouble for not finishing my own stuff. In the end, I just got in trouble for both anyway...'Rock and a hard place."
    The one that didn't pick up the slack, especially if it was detrimental to a patient. There are going to be shifts where things don't get done. Emergencies happen. Complications arise. Clients sometimes refuse to allow one nurse to complete a task but will let another. So on and so on. Passing them to the next shift is commonplace (at least where I work). At the end of the day, we are all there for the patient.

    That said, if it got to the point where one shift was continually "dumping" work onto the next shift, there would be a staff meeting to see where the problem is. Sometimes schedules need adjusted, treatments reorganized, etc.
    Last edit by Elladora on Oct 29, '12 : Reason: Spelling Error


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