"Hardened" Healthcare Providers - page 2

I recently floated to the ER and witnessed such poor ethics in two nurses and paramedics I was astounded! The EMT team brought in an extremely morbidly obese woman in respiratory distress who was... Read More

  1. by   raksha
    Since I was 11 years old (23 now) I have been a severe asthmatic. I refuse to go to the ER for any reason due to the callous and just plain cruel treatment i receive from nursing professionals there. The way my ashtma works is that i get enough oxygen, but i cant expel the CO2 in my luings. Several sources, including RT's and docs have confirmed that many asthmatics have this problem, and with these types of athsmatics it's very common for them to get 100% + reading on a pulse ox. More times than i can count I have had a nurse tell me that I'm just making up my breathing difficulty and they think i should just go home. If my mom was not a nurse these incidences would have caused me to lose all faith in the nursing community. Nobody wants to feel like they are dying only to be told that the people who are supposed to help them don't want to help them because they beleive the illness is being faked. Btw, I'm not attacking nurses in this, just trying to give my perspective from when i was a patient, and the traumatic experiences i had.
  2. by   leslie :-D
    Quote from raksha
    Since I was 11 years old (23 now) I have been a severe asthmatic. I refuse to go to the ER for any reason due to the callous and just plain cruel treatment i receive from nursing professionals there. The way my ashtma works is that i get enough oxygen, but i cant expel the CO2 in my luings. Several sources, including RT's and docs have confirmed that many asthmatics have this problem, and with these types of athsmatics it's very common for them to get 100% + reading on a pulse ox. More times than i can count I have had a nurse tell me that I'm just making up my breathing difficulty and they think i should just go home. If my mom was not a nurse these incidences would have caused me to lose all faith in the nursing community. Nobody wants to feel like they are dying only to be told that the people who are supposed to help them don't want to help them because they beleive the illness is being faked. Btw, I'm not attacking nurses in this, just trying to give my perspective from when i was a patient, and the traumatic experiences i had.
    that is pitiful!
    i'm sorry you've had that experience.
    but please don't lump most nurses into that shallow stereotype.
    most PROFESSIONALS know to assess the pt and not the devices.

    as for the loudened emts and nurses, "psychosocial bs" is a critical part of appeasing a pts' fears/anxieties, as well as a means of encouraging them to feel safe in the hands of their healthcare provider(s).
    i agree that many of us have that 'black humor'.
    but it usually is and should be confined to any area away from the pts and the public.
    whenever i've heard the loud conversations between hcps, i have no problem in reminding them to keep it down, discreetly pointing to those who can hear them talk.
    thankfully, many 'professionals' are just that.

    leslie
  3. by   leslie :-D
    sorry.
    duplicate post.

    leslie

    YOWZA!
    triplicate post!!

    mod, someone delete please????
  4. by   vamedic4
    Tencat and others are correct. While it is unfortunate that the EMTs had a patient such as the one described, their conversation should have been saved for the ambulance bay or break room. Certainly not appropriate for "the desk" or any other such public place.

    It is however, majorly disgusting when you're in the back of an ambulance with someone caked in poop and it's 95 degrees in the rig. Um, can anyone catch my vomit...cuz it's for sure gonna happen.

    And while it is absolutely a coping mechanism...it is nonetheless inappropriate for a topic of public conversation. What if that were your mother??

    vamedic4
    Sometimes wrong, always Dad
  5. by   Tweety
    We need to vent, and it's hard not to take notice of such a patient in such conditions and not talk about it. But they were out of line.
  6. by   vamedic4
    Quote from raksha
    Since I was 11 years old (23 now) I have been a severe asthmatic. I refuse to go to the ER for any reason due to the callous and just plain cruel treatment i receive from nursing professionals there. The way my ashtma works is that i get enough oxygen, but i cant expel the CO2 in my luings. Several sources, including RT's and docs have confirmed that many asthmatics have this problem, and with these types of athsmatics it's very common for them to get 100% + reading on a pulse ox. More times than i can count I have had a nurse tell me that I'm just making up my breathing difficulty and they think i should just go home. If my mom was not a nurse these incidences would have caused me to lose all faith in the nursing community. Nobody wants to feel like they are dying only to be told that the people who are supposed to help them don't want to help them because they beleive the illness is being faked. Btw, I'm not attacking nurses in this, just trying to give my perspective from when i was a patient, and the traumatic experiences i had.
    It's a shame you're treated that way Raksha...anyone who knows ANYTHING about the condition would know that you can't get it OUT, due to inflammation AND bronchoconstriction. Because they refuse to look at the patient and not the pulse ox...You can have sats in the 90s and above and still have capillary refill times of greater than two seconds...indicating WHAT??? Can we spell hypoxia....


    vamedic4
    going to work out
  7. by   cwinlv
    Thank goodness the majority of respondents feel as I do! I've met other nurses who have become somewhat calloused to their patient's situations, and I do NOT want to become part of that statistic.

    I have to wonder what caused this patient's circumstances? Perhaps she lived alone, fell, and was unable to get up, causing her to soil herself. Our view of this patient would certainly change were that to be true, wouldn't it??

    Unfortunately, I can see how years of exposure to drug addicts, alcoholics, gang members, criminals, and other patients who care nothing about their own health, can make some health care individuals (or any public servant) view humanity in a very different manner. Since I started nursing in an inner-city hospital, I have seen sides of humanity I never knew existed....and that terrifies me! I only hope and pray I can retain my rose-colored view of nursing that all new nurses possess, and continue to provide unbiased, compassionate care to my patients for many years to come.
    Last edit by cwinlv on Aug 11, '06
  8. by   VivaLasViejas
    Well, the rose-colored glasses get broken pretty quick---when we've seen something a thousand times, we tend to become a little jaded.

    That, however, does NOT relieve us of our duty to give competent and professional care to everyone, regardless of the circumstances. Nobody ever said we have to like our patients; we have only to treat them as we would like to be treated ourselves. It's hard in some cases, but plain and simple, it's not our job to stand in judgment of those in our care.

    'Nuff said.
  9. by   dotscan
    Hello to everyone ! I got interested with this ethical display by heathcare providers that have forgotten their oath to fairness to everyone and especially the sick. Their attitudes needs to change and that can be corrected properly by reporting to the supervisor in the unit. A drastic punisment is not proper but the ethical issue has to be addressed and they should have to take some kind of inservice as a review to professional ethical behavior and this will serve as warning for them. Hopefully this could change their behavior.
  10. by   Tony0214
    I have been an RN for 25 years, and have been given all kinds of excuses for unproessional behavior. The nursing school way vs. the real world is one of my favorites. It is usually the result of either a nurse who should never have picked this profession, or people who get into the real world and find that standing up for the RIGHT way of doing things is too hard.
    There is never a reason for making fun of a person's lifestyle, there may be unknown (and usually is) reasons both economically and psychologically for what these people are going through. Those who were standing at the station laughing and ridiculing are probably the same ones who picked on others in grade school also. Easier to care for people who are "normal", whatever that means, than to delve into helping those who we don't understand.
  11. by   augigi
    Quote from fergus51
    There is no excuse for saying this where she could hear it. I use black humour same as most nurses, but I wouldn't dream of doing it within my patients' families' earshot.
    :yeahthat:

    There is no excuse for that. I would speak to my manager or write an incident report.
  12. by   miracle1986
    Hey CWINLV---Find out the ambulance company that they work for and go their head anonymously. We are not here to judge patients' living conditions. But we as nurses have a code of ethics. The "ambulance" guys have none. Been there. If no response....go to the director of the E.R. and report them. That patient was more embarrassed than you realize. Good Luck.
  13. by   vampiregirl
    Quote from cwinlv
    IBut aren't we taught to deliver healthcare in a non-judgmental manner?? Yes, I am new to nursing (and healthcare as a whole), but is this what happens to healthcare providers after years of witnessing these types of incidents? I said nothing, but delivered the type of care I was trained to deliver without judgment of the patient and with the compassion I show other patients.
    I can only speak from the EMS long-term perspective, but no this isn't what happens to all EMS personnel. Some days it's very frustrating to have a patient like this, but the behavior of the EMS personnel was very inappropriate. If I take in a patient under these circumstances, I will communicate the living conditions to the nursing staff... in a confidential way out of earshot to others. Social services, health department, or adult protective services may need to be involved.

    In regards to the patient, I agree these patients deserve the same assessment, care, and efforts to perserve dignity as any other patient. Yes it can be very tough to not judge (or gag), but this is part of the job.

    Depending on the patient's condition and transport time, I've removed some of the soiled clothing unless it's stuck to the patient (making sure the patient remains adequately covered) and sealed it in a biobag. This minimizes the odor in the back of the ambulance and the ER room. Also, we carry vick's vapo rub in the back of our ambulance... so the EMT or EMT-P can put a little up their noses to mask odor.

    It seems like more of these cases always come up during the holidays....

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