student safety

  1. Question for clinical faculty:
    do any of your nursing schools have a policy regarding student safety ie: safety on the clinical unit from patients who have already demonstrated violence towards nursing staff? it is one thing when the student graduates and is employed to care for a violent biting, kicking, spitting, patient but don't we have a duty to keep nursing students safe when the danger is KNOWN since they are paying us for an education?
    your thoughts and hightlights of any policies you have would be appreciated.
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  2. 7 Comments

  3. by   sirI
    Quote from valene
    Question for clinical faculty:
    do any of your nursing schools have a policy regarding student safety ie: safety on the clinical unit from patients who have already demonstrated violence towards nursing staff? it is one thing when the student graduates and is employed to care for a violent biting, kicking, spitting, patient but don't we have a duty to keep nursing students safe when the danger is KNOWN since they are paying us for an education?
    your thoughts and hightlights of any policies you have would be appreciated.
    Hello, valene,

    No, we do not allow students to take on the responsibility of patient care with known problematic patients.
  4. by   valene
    you have an awesome background!! I worked a long time in ob before becoming an educator and i have a great interest in LNC. do you have any resources that may be helpful in developing a policy for this, or something that may drive that concept home?
  5. by   sirI
    Quote from valene
    you have an awesome background!! I worked a long time in ob before becoming an educator and i have a great interest in LNC. do you have any resources that may be helpful in developing a policy for this, or something that may drive that concept home?
    Thank you, valene. We have developed our own policy that does not allow students to care for known violent patients. As you have stated, this is just a safety issue. As we all know, there is always the potential for violence to occur in the workplace weather from patients, staff, visitors, etc.

    I believe this is should be the individual institution's responsibility to institute this type of policy. Our students sign stating their understanding the clinicals are as safe as reasonably possible and not without potential for injury, ie, needle sticks, illness associated with exposure, injury associated with patient contact, etc.

    But, at no time do we knowingly assign them a violent patient.
  6. by   StudentC
    I just have to add my two cents here. I was once assigned a patient in my first semester and the first thing the floor nurses said to me when I showed up for clinicals was 'Your instructor must hate you.' Apparently I had the 'prize' patient on the floor - an elderly person with dementia who had already taken a swing at a few of the nurses. Knowing this, my instructor still sent me in there. Aside from momentary stress when trying to avoid a flying tissue box and a plastic basin, I came out of the experience feeling more competent in my abilities.
    Depending on how violent the patient is, that might not always be a good idea. However, as a nursing student I found it an invaluable learning experience and don't recommend protecting students from things they're sure to encounter after graduation.
  7. by   rpv_rn
    Some patients have underlying cause for their violent behavior that could be corrected with appropriate medical treatment.
  8. by   luvmy2angels
    Our instructors have always done their best to make sure we aren't assigned to a patient that is known to be violent. There was an instance where we were assigned to a patient that DID get very agressive and startin punching and pinching us. The instructor didn't believe us because this was a patient that she always assigned to her students. So, she came in with us one time to check out the situation. I must admit that this was kinda funny . She walked up to him and said "Hello ****, how are you today?" He gave her this strange look and punched her square in the stomach!!! She couldn't believe it!! After that she took him off our patient care list and she never questioned us again if we said we have a patient that was combative!!!:wink2:
  9. by   danu3
    I think nursing school should be require to offer lessons with the PE department on how to duck FAST. A class where students develope their reflexes, especially in ducking and running away. The finals for the class will be a student in a simulated patient room with two simulated patients throwing all kinds of things (student has protective gear on) and the student is scored by how many times s/he gets hit (the lower the score the higher the grade, like golf).

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