sleeping staff - page 6

It's incredible! just went down stairs to use their xerox machine and everyone of their staff members is sound asleep, all wrapped up in blankets and "Mouth Wide Open." They just don't care about... Read More

  1. by   Stargazer
    ~sigh~

    Apparently this needs to be stated yet again. I don't care what you do on an official break, whether that is a 15-minute break, a lunch break, or all your breaks for the shift combined into one, as long as this is accepted practice in your unit and institution. Breaks are breaks because (1) your patients are covered by other staff nurses during that time (2) unpaid, and (3) usually mandated by contract. I don't care if you eat, smoke, go the bathroom, go jogging, run to the bank, wash your hair, or crochet a doily during your break, as long as you return to the unit promptly when the break is over.

    I believe what people have an issue with here is people who sleep on the job, i.e., NOT during a break, but during their scheduled shifts.
  2. by   Good_Queen_Bess
    I agree that people falling asleep when NOT on their break is wrong, but a lot of people on here seem to think they can tell others what they can and can't do when ON their break.
  3. by   night owl
    Isn't anyone reading my posts? First of all, it's not happening just on a break, they sleep for 2-3 hours straight...all of them wrapped up in blankets and NO ONE is alert! Second of all, I've tried to do something about it. I have written them up to the NM, nothing was done. I've brought it to the attention of the supervisor. She saw it herself and nothing was done. Now I'm getting ready to go over some heads to the DON to see what he can do. If nothing, then the Director of Administration. I'm hoping that the DON will look into it at least. After that, what else can I do? I didn't want it to go this far, but since no one seems to care, I will take it as far as I have to to get some action. I'm actually thinking they just don't want to deal with it. When the entire staff sleeps, no one is alert to the fact that the residents are being neglected. We have plenty of people who would love to work nights to fill their shoes even if they're just suspended. I wish JACHO would make a suprise visit one night...maybe that's what it'll take or at least tell the DON either do something about it or he'll leave me with no alternative but to report it to JACHO and then management, administration and the sleeping staff will have to face the consequences...Maybe their tune will change then. I'm fighting for what is right ... the resident's safety...it's what I believe in.
  4. by   ShelleyERgirl
    Originally posted by eltrip
    Not sleeping on the job is usually in the employee handbook. Wherever I've worked, it's one of the grounds for immediate dismissal, for any position.

    I'd say it's pretty d@#n bad it had to even be in the handbook. Give me a break!
  5. by   traumaRUs
    Night owl - thanks for clarifying this. And, for Good Queen Bess - well in England if that's the way its run, okay. But, in the US - in busy ERs - when do you find time to sleep??? I work 12 hour nights - I do make sure everyone gets an upaid 30 minute lunch (which is our hospital policy), and I sincerely try to ensure that people get their 15 minute break. However, I can't predict when 5 truama pts will come rolling through the door (we're a level one) or a pediatric full arrest. I don't want to have to wake someone up to give us a hand.

    I agree with Navy Nurse - be a professional. If you work somewhere where you are required to rotate shifts, talk to management - offer to do the schedule to make it more humane, get computerized scheduling (thats way cool) or come up with some alternative and pitch it to management. Thats how professionals deal with issues.
  6. by   rdhdnrs
    There is always something to do, even in downtime. I work a busy L&D and when we're not busy, we stock, clean, work on evaluations, etc. I don't think there's ever any excuse for sleeping on the clock.
  7. by   ANnot4me
    I'm not understanding the use of the word professional here. I believe it is being used improperly.
  8. by   shelleybelle
    Last year sometime there was a nursing home in MS where the whole entire night shift (nurses, aides, etc.) was sleeping. The state came in on a surprise visit during one of these nights and found these people had even charted all the way up to 7am when the next shift came on. It's my understanding the whole home was closed down.

    I don't know if I could sleep on the job and feel right about it... of course, I don't think I'm night-shift material anyway so I can't (at this point) see myself in that position. I do good to stay up til 10pm... and this whole timechange has my bedtime messed up!
  9. by   mother/babyRN
    We have one or two..I feel like I am robbing the place and have to keep busy. It does bug me that these people are basically robbing the joing by sleeping and getting paid....
  10. by   Hellllllo Nurse
    Originally posted by Dplear
    I take my breaks. I am entitled to them and have earned them. It is stupid to be so self sacraficing and altruistic as to not take care of yourself.
    I did take care of myself. I quit that job and will no longer work where it is impossible to take a break. It wasn't "self sacrificing and altrusitic."

    Here's what is was: totally unreasonable pt load and sick pts. Nevertheless, as a nurse, I am reponsible for my pts. I did what had to be done to ensure adequate pt care.

    I cannot take my break if the acuity level, number of pts and poor staffing makes it unsafe to do so. Even though I am legally entitled to a break, I am also legally responsible for my pts.

    IMHO, any nurse (or anyone else) who sleeps on the job is a slacker.

    When I was an LPN, I worked w/ an RN who slept every noc, leaving me w/ the entire floor to care for all by myself.

    Because of her actions, she caused pts to suffer.
    I know, I saw it, and I was the one trying to shake her lazy @$$ awake.
    I also worked w/ an alcholic RN on days who slept off her hangovers. This was at a private inpt hospice unit. She has since lost her license in an unrelated matter. I was fool enough to cover for her and others who slept on the job at one time, but never will again.

    Talked to a close friend on the phone last noc.
    Just this week, she called her DON in the middle of the noc to report co-workers sleeping. The DON came in, caught and fired them on the spot. GOOD FOR HER.
  11. by   Good_Queen_Bess
    I have worked in busy area's. But 90% of the time, we still got the time for a break. If I feel that the ward is not adequatley staffed on certain nights or when it's particularly busy etc etc, I may not get a break. So shoot me for being human and getting the break I am entitled to by law and sleeping during it. I have never yet met any night staff who have had a problem with other night staff sleeping on their breaks.
    TraumaRU: It's not about "how things work in the UK", it's about being human and having your body clock so messed up, you no longer actually HAVE a body clock!
    Last edit by Good_Queen_Bess on Apr 7, '03
  12. by   sbic56
    If the sleeping is occurring during breaks, (combining 15 minute breaks and half hour to = an hour), wouldn't you all say that is acceptable?

    If not...then why?

    Sometimes nurses can be martyrs. To say no sleeping what so ever is punitive at best. Be sensible, be sure your patients care comes first, but realize it is actually smart to take advantge of the opportunity to get some rest. The night shift is a killer. Studies show full time nights takes 7 years off the average life span of a career night shift worker. It IS unique. It is not like working the day shift. It is abnormal to push you body to the point of exhaustion which sometimes happens as night workers still need to live in a day time world. Responsibility is one thing, but it is OK to take care of ourselves, right?
  13. by   Good_Queen_Bess
    Originally posted by sbic56
    If the sleeping is occurring during breaks, (combining 15 minute breaks and half hour to = an hour), wouldn't you all say that is acceptable?

    If not...then why?

    Sometimes nurses can be martyrs. To say no sleeping what so ever is punitive at best. Be sensible, be sure your patients care comes first, but realize it is actually smart to take advantge of the opportunity to get some rest. The night shift is a killer. Studies show full time nights takes 7 years off the average life span of a career night shift worker. It IS unique. It is not like working the day shift. It is abnormal to push you body to the point of exhaustion which sometimes happens as night workers still need to live in a day time world. Responsibility is one thing, but it is OK to take care of ourselves, right?

    Here, Here!

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