Well.. I guess I am going to be canned - page 4

Hi all I am a new nurse 4 mos off orientation working on a med/surge nuero floor 6 patient ratio. Its a brutal floor and yet.. I manage to survive albeit exhausted and oft times just disillusioned with the Candy Land notion of... Read More

  1. 1
    Quote from brandy1017
    I agree with the last poster! This is trivial and you didn't even ask the person to do it. Occasionally a CNA would change a simple dressing on a bedsore after cleaning the patient up and I let them. The situation sounds ridiculous and overblown and frankly I don't see what the patient could sue for? *What does their PTSD have to do with it anyway?* No harm was done! I can't imagine you would lose your job over this. Frankly it sounds trumped up that you would even have to go to HR over this. Good luck!
    Maybe her PTSD is related to men...*shrugs*

    Either way, OP should've gotten canned.
    Caribbean Character likes this.

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  2. 1
    Dear Nichristeve,
    Please don't sweat just yet. You cannot and will not be held responsible for the actions of non-licensed personel who acted without you giving them a direct order to do so. If a housekeeper gave a patient tape, put tape on a patient or even went further outside their scope, you are not responsible for his/her actions unless "You" gave them a direct order to do so. The most that your supervisor can do is "verbally" reprimand you for not reporting this to the unlicensed persons manager or filling out an incident report. Administrative and punitive action cannot be taken against any nurse for what "might" have happened. Now, if you continue to have issues with not reporting patient safety concerns, you could definitely get into some trouble.
    Your board of nursing cannot take action against you either and they won't. Boards of nursing look at delegation of tasks. Who delegated and was the delegation appropriate? Did harm come to the patient? Also, for clarification... a piece of tape is considered basic first aide. Most hospitals require all staff, including housekeepers to have basic CPR and first aide training. That said, your housekeeper may have acted within his or her own perceived "good samaritan" scope. Whether it was right or wrong really does not matter with regards to you. Again, this issue was not YOUR responsibility. No harm came to this patient BECAUSE of your actions. At most, you might be scrutinized for your follow up action by your employer. Remember, you had nothing to do with the incident itself and could not have prevented it from occurring.
    Please protect your rights and contact your union (if you have one) immediately before speaking to anyone in admin. or human resources. If you do not have a union, you may go to the meeting with your Administrators, but please do not make any statements about your actions. Do not defend it, or explain it. Simply let them know you need to speak with a lawyer before proceeding as you have very valid concerns and rights that need to be protected. You have the right to have a lawyer present if your job or license are being threatened.
    bluenurse85 likes this.
  3. 13
    I am sorry, but if nurses have to clean rooms the housekeepers should be able to apply tape on a bandaid
    canoehead, Jessy_RN, bluenurse85, and 10 others like this.
  4. 8
    Thank you Nurse Betty

    Your reply made me feel a lot better. The deed has been done ( I was fired) and I don't think anyone will be going to the board of nursing. The Don was present and my nurse manager along with a HR rep who was supposed to be my advocate. They were alluding to concerns about me not practicing safely going forward. I have received corrective actions (education) 2 x before this for basic job knowledge. Again, I am a NEW nurse, who handles my job duties with efficiency and autonomy because my charge nurse is usually no help. I am looking at this as a CYA from now on AND will be careful about patients, staff, managers and every damned body else. I am in Florida, no union. In the interview, I was lauded for my confidence and demeanor in never seeming to fluster as a new grad RN with the intense pace of the floor. Tks, yet got a backhanded compliment with "my never asking questions scared the manager". Um.. what? So.. maybe it is best that we separated. It seems like the place was not nurturing at all.
    Jessy_RN, bluenurse85, libbyliberal, and 5 others like this.
  5. 0
    Quote from Phoenix2541
    No it wasn't smart. There is no "law suit pending" My manager simply stated she "could" bring one, like anybody "can" bring a suit about anything. Tks for the empathy.
    Yes, any one can sue for any number of frivolous reasons. Depending on the incident, the hospital can choose to settle, defend, etc.

    We've all had dumb dumb moves. If we're lucky, they'll be minor & garner a verbal warning.

    Sent from my HTC One X using allnurses.com
    Last edit by dansamy on Sep 10, '13
  6. 3
    Phoenix2541, I hope a better door of opportunity opens up for you soon. I was fired from my job not too long ago - allowed myself a little pity party, reflected on what happened, picked myself back up and am moving on. If it makes you feel any better, I was fired for walking a stable patient (wearing a high fall risk armband) a short distance to a nearby department rather than transport him by wheelchair (no written policy and I'd never been told this was required until after I ambulated my patient). No harm occurred to my patient. Anyway, we all live and learn. Good luck on finding a job that you love!
    bluenurse85, chevyv, and Phoenix2541 like this.
  7. 15
    Quote from dansamy
    I believe the suit is frivolous, but I thought the McDonald's coffee suit was too. Duh, coffee's hot. Don't spill it!

    I think the patient & her lawyer could possibly make enough noise that the hospital offers them a settlement just to make them go away.

    Sent from my HTC One X using allnurses.com
    Totally off topic, but you brought it up. Ever seen the pictures of the vagina and groin area of the woman who spilled McDonald's coffee on herself? The coffee was Not. Drinkable. Caused third degree burns. Totally negligent to heat coffee to that temperature (to save a buck, mind you) and serve it through a drive thru window. It's not a matter of "coffee's hot." I encourage people who know nothing about that lawsuit to do some research on it if you're going to use it in your daily life as a debate point. Maybe watch the documentary "Hot Coffee" available on Netflix. The pictures are less than 30 minutes into the movie.
    pre-nurseshan, canoehead, fetch, and 12 others like this.
  8. 3
    Quote from Phoenix2541
    Thanks for your responses guys. Sigh, I did not include this piece of information. The housekeeper was in an isolation room cleaning and when the patient asked if I could come in and apply more tape on her bandage, as I was gowning up, he said to me" you want me to do it". So this is where I made the fatal mistake, I said ok. I watched him and the issue is a) she has a pysch background, b.its a she and housekeeper is a he, c. did he even change his gloves. (I didn't see that part), Lastly, I did not critically think about the ramifications of this and this is a patient safety issue and he was non nursing staff. So I got canned. I am bummed of course, but I have learned from this and will not make that kind of mistake again.


    Unfortunately, you were at fault; management did have a valid concern about patient safety.

    I think firing you was extreme, though. They could have handled this much better while letting you keep your job...it definitely sounds like they were wary of a lawsuit being filed--in this litigation-happy age, people have filed lawsuits for far less. So they probably thought the best way to avoid that was to sack you.

    If you didn't have it already, get malpractice insurance. No, it won't help you with this job, but it could help you if there is a next time. Hopefully there won't be a next time...

    I'm sorry this happened. Best of luck with the job hunt.
    Ellen NP, hiddencatRN, and Esme12 like this.
  9. 1
    Ummm...how would this case hold up in court? No harm was done. Sounds like this is more about the OP's safe practice rather than a potential lawsuit. I think this should have been handled differently. The blame should not have been pinned on a potential lawsuit. If the OP is off probation, I think the OP suing the hospital for wrongful firing will hold up stronger in court than the patient suing for PTSD over a piece of tape.
    canoehead likes this.
  10. 0
    This is ridiculous,you should not have been fired! And yet I could see this happening at every hospital I have worked in. They have to cover their own butts in case someone sues. God forbid.

    Best of luck to you in your future career endeavors.

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