Fired for expressing concerns about patient safety and care! - page 6
I need help please. Just not sure what to do now. Getting right to the particulars. I was working in a So Cal Hospital in a Psychiatric unit. I was assigned a set schedule. 1) I was suddenly... Read More
Sep 25, '12My probation period is 1 year. You better believe I am not ruffling feathers before that's over.
Sep 25, '12I am a PCT so I have lots to learn but what I can offer is this. Working 8 days in a row is not illegal or unethical by any means! I worked in property management and would do a 10 day stretch with no OT because of the way the schedule feel. I was never spoken to about this because we were staffed according to needs of the community for that time. Secondly...it is wise in ANY profession to lay low for a while. I do not mean to compromise patient safety. What I do mean is to address things is a tactful manner. I hope things work out for you. Sounds like you should chalk this up to experience and move on. Good Luck!
Sep 25, '12alodocios,
I don't think this is a nursing thing........but a job thing. I work for a great place, but people can and do get fired during that probationary time. the same thing happens with teachers and other professions. if this is her first job my heart goes out to them, but my concern is they don't seem to be self-reflective of how to 'play' this for the next time this situation arises.
I don't know the OP job situation , it may very well be unsafe........ but when i was in my first 6 months of my current job i felt the same way, i felt it was insane what they were 'asking' of me. but now that i have been doing this job for awhile.......well i feel like i have a pretty cushy job....... sometimes our perspective as a new employee is clouded by us still learning the role. Learning that comes with time and I feel for them that they don't get a second chance when they worked so hard to get a job. unfortunately your most at risk of getting fired that last month before you go off probation. because employers know this is their last chance to jump ship, and that is the absolute last time you want to stick out in this way. best wishes.
Sep 25, '12Quote from Paco-RNGood Lord! A year? I wish you all the best.My probation period is 1 year. You better believe I am not ruffling feathers before that's over.
Sep 25, '12One thing I'd like to point out is that I'm sure many (if not *all*) the experienced nurses the OP worked with warned her the consequences of rocking the boat and getting in over her head. Don't fall into the newbie trap of thinking "they're just grumpy and mean". Wise advice that is well-intentioned and freely given is a valuable thing.
Sep 25, '12all good to know. Like i said, i am learning a lot from this thread that i will take with me into my first job.
Sep 25, '12Quote from alodociosThis situation and all the advice makes me think of a saying my mom had, " We have two eyes, two ears, and one mouth so that we can look and listen twice as much as we speak."all good to know. Like i said, i am learning a lot from this thread that i will take with me into my first job.
I think i will now have the hang of this probation/work thing.
Sep 25, '12Quote from BrandonLPNIn fact they did not! They where the first to speak up and even began training me to cover for days when they where the charge nurse. I received the highest complement any NYSE can pay another I was told "If I where a patient, you would be the nurse I want" Nursing is a labor of love and if your just in it for the money you will never last long.One thing I'd like to point out is that I'm sure many (if not *all*) the experienced nurses the OP worked with warned her the consequences of rocking the boat and getting in over her head. Don't fall into the newbie trap of thinking "they're just grumpy and mean". Wise advice that is well-intentioned and freely given is a valuable thing.Last edit by hkrntobe on Sep 25, '12
Sep 25, '12Quote from hkrntobeDo you get how ironic that sounds?In fact they did not! They where the first to speak up and even began training me to cover for days when they where the charge nurse. I received the highest complement any NYSE can pay another I was told "If I where a patient, you would be the nurse I want" Nursing is a labor of love and if your just in it for the money you will never last long.
Sep 25, '12Hi hkrntobe,
I will start by saying that I am sorry that this has happened to you.
Now to the nitty-gritty:
To those nurses who have said that as a new nurse you should "fly under the radar", "keep your mouth shut", etc. I can only say that they should be ashamed of themselves. Is it not part of the Nursing Code of Ethics that we advocate for our patients and their families? And yes, it is political. All health care workplaces are politically driven, especially since implementation of the new CMS regulations (aka Obamacare). Of course you should protect your license also.
But all of that is an aside of the question originally asked.
As a new nurse, or an experienced one, it is overwhelming to integrate into a new work place and culture. I would cause a major riot if they tried to schedule me 8-in-a-row. That is NOT acceptable anywhere unless you are the one picking up extra hours or agreed to that schedule. If you were hired with a block schedule, then that is what you should be working. They are pulling one over on you and I would go back to HR and ask for copies of the policies. Then take that and copies of your hiring contract to a lawyer for a free consultation.
Union reps are a waste of time when the dirt hits the fan. And please don't anyone reply to me to try and convince me otherwise. I am entitled to my opinion which I base on my experiences at both union and non-union hospitals. The start date is the day you start with the organization and NOT the day you start on the floor. You should ask yourself "what day did they start paying me?". Again, I think it is worth consulting a lawyer to get the details from HR if you are needing to pursue this.
Lastly, if you truly feel that there are some serious patient risks in the care given and/or the safety of patients I would strongly recommend reporting it to your State Department of Health. It is done anonymously and they are required to follow up on any complaint filed. Give concise details and specific dates if you can to identify incidents of compromised care and patient safety.
Just remember, there are some of us nurses who will also stand up for what is right. You will find another job and continue to be a good nurse, take what positives you can from every experience you have, and don't let the politics of healthcare ruin your enjoyment of what you do. US healthcare is complex and frustrating and unfortunately that will not change anytime soon. Good luck with all you do!
Sep 25, '12Patients attacking each other and nurses is part of psych nursing unfortunately. Its part of ER too, I get kicked, slapped, spit on, hit all the time. Its a hostile enviroment in both, and you really have to roll with the punches, no pun intended. If its not something acceptable to you, then maybe that wasnt the best fit for you, and maybe thats what they saw. On another note, 8 days in a row iscrazy. The hospital I work for has a fatigue management policy that states you cant work more than 4 12 hour shifts at a time, no matter what week they fall on. You must have one day off. But I will say when I worked psych they worked you like a dog. Also your hire date and start date are 2 seperate things, and probation doesnt start until your start date. How would they gauge your abilities if you were not working? I work in texas, which is at an at will employer, they can fire you whenever they feel like and dont have to list a reason. Look into the scheduling policies for your next job before accepting it. See who does the scheduling, or is it rotation work. See if they have fatigue policies in place.
Sep 25, '12I think when we're hired, our hire date is of course the day we were hired. But when we are to do a 90-day probation, I think it doesn't begin until we're actually out there working. The 90 day evaluation usually occurs after 90 days on the floor.
As for speaking up, as nurses, against poor standards of care, that is certainly our responsibility. In 17 years I've seen my share of poor care but, fortunately, mostly great care.
Yes, we need to speak up. But as a new grad, first job, within the first 3 months I think there is a time we are to observe and learn. What we see in reality is not as clearly delineated as in the textbooks and the classroom. If you, as a brand new nurse in a brand new job, see obvious signs of neglect or abuse, then yes!! By all means... speak up!!! But if you're walking into an environment with established nurses and decide that their way of doing things is risky for patients and staff, try to think how that's gonna sound when you call it to their attention. The OP didn't go into great detail about what she felt was wrong with the safety measures of the unit, so it's hard for us to know exactly what happened. Perhaps she had legitimate reason for complaint. I do think, however, that nurse management is not likely to restructure patient care and staff coordination on the advice of a brand spankin' new nurse.
Those 90 days are not just for probation, they're partially for orientation as well. It's to see how well you fit into the department. If you walk in from the beginning months telling them how to effectively manage patient safety and care, staff coordination and scheduling, then follow it up with a complaint to the union about your own schedule, all within your first 90 days on the floor, don't be surprised if it's not met with a warm reception.
There is a time to listen and learn. After years of walking the halls and paying your dues, your suggestions are far more likely to be met with open ears.
I would encourage the original poster to approach the next job having learned from the first experience and to weigh her comments, suggestions, and complaints, carefully. Good luck, I hope you find a job that is a much better match for you.
Sep 25, '12I should be ashamed of myself for keeping my mouth shut and keeping my job? So if I do the right thing and get myself fired for not having sense enough to keep my mouth shut what are you going to do about it? Are you going to be sending me all the money I will be needing for my rent, food, utilities etc etc etc.