Bill Would Let Patients Pick Nurse Gender - page 4

JUNEAU, Alaska -- Faith Myers, an Anchorage woman with schizophrenia, has been in and out of mental institutions since 2000. She said she felt violated during the time she spent at the Alaska... Read More

  1. by   LilPeanut
    I know it is a requirement here in OH when you have a gyn procedure (even in office) with a male dr., they have to offer you to have a female "Chaperone". You can decline if you don't want her, but I think the drs. could also request one (to head off allegations of abuse) I don't think it is absolutely unreasonable to have someone of the same sex present if at all possible, but I'm not sure it needs to be legislated.
  2. by   Thunderwolf
    Senseless, plain senseless. But hey, it is Alaska's tax dollars at work and a legislator's right to waste them on such a thing.
  3. by   Tweety
    Quote from SmilingBluEyes
    mine know how. and yes, they are allowed to call and "check in" at work w/me. I keep it short, less than 5 minutes. 13 hours is a long time away from kids.

    I've no beef with that at all. I'd want my kids to call me when they got home from school if I were a parent, so I could say "do your homework, take out the trash, don't go anywhere" and nag them. Also night shift nurses need to say goodnight to their kids, or get them up in the morning. But there are plenty of phones around so your cell phone doesn't have to wring while you're on duty.
  4. by   CCU NRS
    Bill Would Let Patients Pick Nurse Gender but would it let them pick your nose?

    Sorry I just to go there, this does seem rather intrusive.
  5. by   SmilingBluEyes
    Quote from Tweety
    I've no beef with that at all. I'd want my kids to call me when they got home from school if I were a parent, so I could say "do your homework, take out the trash, don't go anywhere" and nag them. Also night shift nurses need to say goodnight to their kids, or get them up in the morning. But there are plenty of phones around so your cell phone doesn't have to wring while you're on duty.
    I agree. Where I work, cell phones are "SUPPOSED" to be off, and most of us abide by that. Not all of us abide by the "keep the call short and to the point" mandate, however. I honestly do. I am not there to talk on the phone. And my kids and dh know that.
  6. by   UnewmeB4
    Quote from Tweety
    I've no beef with that at all. I'd want my kids to call me when they got home from school if I were a parent, so I could say "do your homework, take out the trash, don't go anywhere" and nag them. Also night shift nurses need to say goodnight to their kids, or get them up in the morning. But there are plenty of phones around so your cell phone doesn't have to wring while you're on duty.
    ABSOLUTELY!

    I just have a thing with people who keep them on all the time...even during report! That is just plain rude.
  7. by   leslie :-D
    i certainly think it's absurd to be mandated into a law but it should also go w/o saying that if a pt. requests a specific gender, then that request should try and be honored.
    and yes, the pt. can refuse care.
    i personally would not allow a male cna/nurse do my pericare; that's me and there are reasons for it.
    my pcp is female and any gyn i would go to, would have to be female.
    but to make it into law? not necessary at all.

    leslie
  8. by   nadja9
    Quote from jnette
    Y'know. as I think about this, I can fully understand why ppl might have preferences... not that our male colleagues are any less or any more professional than the femlaes.. but I'm looking at it strictly from the PATIENT'S perspective and why they might feel uncomfortable.

    With SO MUCH emphasis on "sex" in our society, (TV, movies, comedy, talk shows).. and our tendency to see the human body and anatomy as a "sexual" thing (far more so than in other countries) it is easy to see why many have hang-ups about this. And many women DO prefer female docs, I know I do.. and I am far from prudish, modest, or shy about my body.

    While I was an avid skinny-dipper in my younger years , I was surprised this week as I was being prepped for my cardiac procedure that I had to fight off little twinges of "discomfort" which tried to force their way into my consciousness as I was surrounded by a room full of male nurses.

    And rationally, I KNEW that these fellas were professionals. But irrationally, stupid thoughts would creep in.. like all the jokes and small talk.. the obsession with big boobs, (and there I lay with my little old, shriveled up deflated fried eggs) ... and then while I was being shaved to prep the catheter entry sites and the areas cleansed and swabbed with povidone...I have to be honest and admit that I had to make a conscious effort to remind myself that these guys were nurses and just like me .. no different than when I would do the same to a male patient.

    So I really think a lot of it has to do with how we have made such an ISSUE of sexuality and the human body, so that it permeates our consciousness at nearly every level.. even when you KNOW BETTER.

    So if I felt just a tiny tad wierd, I can well imagine how some of the elderly or other regular folks might feel, who certainly aren't used to this. And while their DOCS might be male, these same docs are seen by them maybe once a month or far less even, and certainly don't bathe them, do pericare, and assist them with toileting on a daily basis, either, so these folks can deal with it on a different level perhaps.

    At least I had the sense to recognize my own feelings and brush them off as irrational, tell myself I knew better. etc. and the LAST thing I wanted was to make THEM feel uncomfortable by my own occasional little twinges of selfconsciousness.

    By no means am I advocating this bill or any like it.. it's nonsense. I'm merely attempting to see where this feeling originates and understand it. There IS much to be said for those women who may have been sexually assualted or molested, I can find no fault there with having a preference.

    But all in all, we do attempt to accomodate our patients as best we can, for it is in the end, THEIR comfort that we seek and do our best to provide.

    We as nurses, viewing all this from OUR perspective can see how silly this is. I always like to put myself in my patinet's shoes and view things from THEIR perspective as well. And not all come from the same place... some could care less, some might even ENJOY it :uhoh21: .. and some have real issues with it.

    I think we are already doing the right thing.. recognizing personal preferences and accomodating where we can, as we can, to put our patients at ease.
    But legislation is foolishness and just another slippery slope toward more foolishness yet. :stone
    Thank you for providing this insight, and I couldn't agree with you more. Expounding on the issue of sexualization, we also need to acknowledge the fact that, statistically, 1 in 4 women have/will be sexuall assaulted over a lifetime, and the vast majority of women,have at some point in their lives been sexually harassed. So any internalized fears that those things may reoccur, particularly in a vulnerable state, like being in a hospital and feeling powerless, as well as "some strange male" attending to our needs involving genitalia, may set off any number of very uncomfortable feelings. I think it is always necessary to be respectful of patient wishes if we are to be truly patient advocates.

    I am someone, who although I am very comfortable and know the few male nurses I work with are extremely competent, prefer that type of care from a female. I also prefer, for the most part, female physicians. I have been sexually harassed by a physician before (believe me, that got nipped in the bud FAST), there is one doc that can't seem to stop staring at my breasts, etc. No males docs, nurses, etc. unless I know them well and feel really comfortable.

    I have also had the experience of patients (male) really liking the idea that I was giving them or would assist them with their bath. Yuch. I have had to trade patients with other staff before because of patient behavior with me. Pretty disgusting. I know many others of you have experienced this as well.

    I think for the most part, all of these issues do not come into play. Thankfully! But now and then, they arise, and we have to be respectful and tactful of patient requests. I know I would want that.

    I also agree that it is part of our socialization of women as care takers and nursing being a role traditionally seen as a woman's. Someone earlier had some good comments about that.
  9. by   crjnursewarrior
    Quote from lee1
    And what about MDs------- I have never seen anyone complain about their gender !!!!!
    This is probably not a big problem with MDs since most pts. choose who their physician is. When you enter the hospital you don't get a choice of what gender your nurse is. I guess in some instances in the hospital you might not get to choose your dr., like the ER or such, but in most instances people choose the gender of their dr. I think most of us try to provide the pt. with as much dignity as possible. If the pt. wants another gender nurse and it is available, I say give it to him/her. But the legislation issue is ridiculous...just another matter of people making a big deal over nothing...JMHO
  10. by   CCU NRS
    Quote from crjnursewarrior
    This is probably not a big problem with MDs since most pts. choose who their physician is. When you enter the hospital you don't get a choice of what gender your nurse is. I guess in some instances in the hospital you might not get to choose your dr., like the ER or such, but in most instances people choose the gender of their dr. I think most of us try to provide the pt. with as much dignity as possible. If the pt. wants another gender nurse and it is available, I say give it to him/her. But the legislation issue is ridiculous...just another matter of people making a big deal over nothing...JMHO
    But just as many years ago all nurses were women so were all Doctors Male now that I think about it.
  11. by   mspringer
    TELL IT TO THE REPRESENTATIVE

    Here is the Representative's Contact Info:


    Les Gara

    His office can be reached at:
    716 W. 4th Avenue, Anchorage, AK 99501,
    Tel. 269-0106, Fax 269-0109
    email: Rep.Les.gara@legis.state.ak.us
    Rep. Gara's legislative website:gara.akdemocrats.org
    Legislature's website: www.legis.state.ak.us
    State of Alaska's website: www.state.ak.us
  12. by   Sis123
    What I 'd like to know is why jail inmates deserve more sensitivity regarding their physical privacy/dignaty than psych inpatients?

    In jail, women are dealt with by matrons, and not men, when issues of being inspected/examined/showered are being done. Why is this considered of no importance to psych patients?

    This is a great disparity!

    I do not think that this needs to be legislated, but at the very least, the people in psych hospitals need to be given the dignity that inmates and prisoners have come to expect!
  13. by   Marie_LPN, RN
    Quote from Sis123
    What I 'd like to know is why jail inmates deserve more sensitivity regarding their physical privacy/dignaty than psych inpatients?

    In jail, women are dealt with by matrons, and not men, when issues of being inspected/examined/showered are being done. Why is this considered of no importance to psych patients?

    This is a great disparity!

    I do not think that this needs to be legislated, but at the very least, the people in psych hospitals need to be given the dignity that inmates and prisoners have come to expect!
    Exellent post.

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