Nurses Face Harassment From Patients - page 2

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Nurse Sarah Andres is so used to male patients calling her "sweetie" or "cutie"-or even asking her for a kiss-that it rarely upsets her anymore. "I usually chalk it up to they... Read More

  1. by   kadokin
    Quote from StuNurseUP
    LOM can be so nasty sometimes! LOM in a WC decided it would be funny to wave his new porn mag in my face when I was 8 months pregnant.Got a real kick out of the shock on my face. If he wasn't in a wheel chair and he wasn't my patient.....
    I hate to be the one to say this, but, So What? Why were you shocked? Have you never seen a porno mag before? Have you never seen a dirty old man before? Don't let people like this get to you. They do it for the shock value. Don't give them the satisfaction of showing it on your face. You were obviously pregnant. Did he think you had never heard of sex before. Sorry. Maybe I'm jaded, but I just don't see what the big deal is. He is an idiot. Don't waste your time worrying about him or his opinions/perceptions
  2. by   kadokin
    Quote from HeartsOpenWide
    I had a 60 something male patient ask me on a date (I was 21 at the time) When I told him I was married (and thinking to myself..."I've seen your medical reconds"...) he said "I am not surprised, I just had to ask, I was smitten":imbar
    Again. What is the big deal? I don't mean to belittle anyone's feelings, but, gosh, I would take this as a compliment. Guess I'm just a cave woman.
  3. by   Marie_LPN, RN
    Quote from canoehead
    Nurses facing harassment is news??? I thought the public considered it their right.
    Ain't THAT the truth.
  4. by   kadokin
    Quote from jonear2
    In school I had a patient grab my rear while I dropped my first NG tube! I was mortified and didn't know what to do. I was timid, but I was doing my day in the ER and the nurses down there are tough, God love them. The RN I was with told the patient that if he ever did that again she was going to put that tube farther down than he would ever want it. I felt vindicated but where is the line? I still am unsure what the correct response is in that situation. Part of me felt as though the RN was brave and right, but somewhere deep down I'm sure there was a better "nursing process" perfect answer that eludes me. Any thoughts???
    Here you go:
    "Don't do that again" accompanied by your stern look.
    And just leave it at that. No need to threaten or explain. Draw the line clearly and most people will understand.
    I used to tend bar and wait tables for a living and I guess I just got good at this sort of thing. I hope no one thinks I take sexual harrassment lightly, but the posts I have commented on seem to me to be tempests in teapots. I don't see anyone being threatened w/bodily assault or job loss if they refuse to tolerate unwanted advances here. And if someone touches you when or how you don't want to be touched, make it clear that it is not appropriate and will not be tolerated. If your pt can't understand that, call for backup. Big and male, if available.
    Isn't this how we teach our children to deal w/unwanted touching? SAY NO LOUDLY AND MEAN IT!
    Last edit by kadokin on Dec 27, '05
  5. by   AuntieRN
    I hope this doesn't sound like a stupid question...but...if you are physically assaulted by a patient who is not a psych patient are you allowed to press charges or what ramifications if any are there to the patient? I thought a facility could not refuse to treat a patient...if it is a psych patient then what can be done? I have seen physical abuse by patients...heck I have been hit many times by patients...just this weekend in fact...he punched me in the stomach and ran his wheelchair into my ankle on purpose..I was doing a 1:1 with a pt on the rehab floor who had a brain injury....sometimes he knew exactly what was going on and other times he did not...but both incidences were because he could not have his own way...guess I am just wondering where the boundaries are and what if anything can be done...I am not an RN yet...but I have been a CNA for 20 years and my how things have changed...once upon a time a pt who was physically assaulting staff got taken down and restrained...thats a NONO now...thanks for listening....
  6. by   Ruby Vee
    Quote from kabin
    i wonder what the nursing leadership's stance is on this problem? maybe i'm wrongs, but from what i've learned in my bsn studies so far, nursing leadership tends to be concerned with esoteric issues rather than protecting nurses. if nothing else, nurses should be made aware of their rights.

    there needs to be data collection to close the loop so the problem is lessened. it should be hospital/facility policy that patients are warned about the possibility of denied service. i think many hospitals have these policies in place.
    nurses have rights? are you sure? i've never heard of nurses having rights! responsibilities, yes. rights, no!

    nursing leadership is not at all concerned with protecting nurses from abuse (of any kind) by patients, families, physicians or visitors. they are, however, concerned about "protecting" patients, families, visitors or physicians from "evil nurses."

    ruby
  7. by   StuNurseUP
    kadokin, it is not okay for a little old man to lure me over by requesting help so that he can stick a picture of numerous naked women in my face and ask me if I liked it! He was not a psych pt and it was very innapropriate. Last time I looked that qualifies as sexualk harrassment
  8. by   grannynurse FNP student
    Quote from vlsgrl
    I hope this doesn't sound like a stupid question...but...if you are physically assaulted by a patient who is not a psych patient are you allowed to press charges or what ramifications if any are there to the patient? I thought a facility could not refuse to treat a patient...if it is a psych patient then what can be done? I have seen physical abuse by patients...heck I have been hit many times by patients...just this weekend in fact...he punched me in the stomach and ran his wheelchair into my ankle on purpose..I was doing a 1:1 with a pt on the rehab floor who had a brain injury....sometimes he knew exactly what was going on and other times he did not...but both incidences were because he could not have his own way...guess I am just wondering where the boundaries are and what if anything can be done...I am not an RN yet...but I have been a CNA for 20 years and my how things have changed...once upon a time a pt who was physically assaulting staff got taken down and restrained...thats a NONO now...thanks for listening....
    Anyone who has been physically assaulted has the right to file a police report, regardless if they are a nurse or a patient. And it will be investigated. One should notify the supervisor or relevant nursing person and inform them of what has happen and ones intent to make a formal complaint. Hopefully the nursing administration will support the individual making the complaint.

    Grannynurse
  9. by   kadokin
    Quote from StuNurseUP
    kadokin, it is not okay for a little old man to lure me over by requesting help so that he can stick a picture of numerous naked women in my face and ask me if I liked it! He was not a psych pt and it was very innapropriate. Last time I looked that qualifies as sexualk harrassment
    So sorry. Didn't know he had asked you if you liked it. Maybe this does qualify as sexualk harassment. Sorry again.
  10. by   kadokin
    Oh, and BTW, if it is inappropriate for any pt, it is also inappropriate for a psych pt. Maybe that is why I seem so blase about these complaints. I deal w/psych pt's on a daily basis and, as a team, we make it VERY CLEAR that inappropriate behavior of ANY KIND will not be tolerated. I don't aim to make ANYONE'S discomfort seem like a small thing. You have to establih boundaries from the outset and make it clear. No need for threats, just tell them it ain't happening. In my experience, that flat-affect-who-cares face does a lot more to discourage this type of behavior than any expressions of shock or dismay. Hope this helps.
  11. by   JessicRN
    Quote from grannynurse FNP student
    Anyone who has been physically assaulted has the right to file a police report, regardless if they are a nurse or a patient. And it will be investigated. One should notify the supervisor or relevant nursing person and inform them of what has happen and ones intent to make a formal complaint. Hopefully the nursing administration will support the individual making the complaint.

    Grannynurse
    I was hit choked and kicked by a drunk suicidal patient just 2 weeks ago. I went to press charges and the court told me it would be a waste as since she was drunk and suicidal she is considered not of sane mind so nothing will happen.:angryfire
  12. by   DusktilDawn
    Quote from JessicRN
    I was hit choked and kicked by a drunk suicidal patient just 2 weeks ago. I went to press charges and the court told me it would be a waste as since she was drunk and suicidal she is considered not of sane mind so nothing will happen.:angryfire
    Interesting how I could be drunk and suicidal, get behind the wheel of a car, deliberately crash into other vehicles causing death and mutilation to others, survive without a scratch. I could go beat the crap out of a stranger on the street. I could destroy someone property. The outcome would be that I would be criminally charged and convicted and the fact that I was drunk and suicidal wouldn't relieve me of responsibility for my actions. So is what the courts telling us that if a drunk suicidal patient choked us to death they would not be considered of sane mind and nothing would happen? Interesting how being drunk outside of a hospital and committing assault is different than inside.

    JessicRN, I'm sorry this happened to you and I hope you are doing OK. I'm sorry the justice system let you down. Frankly I think you were told filing charges would be useless because they didn't feel it would be a good case to prosecute because there is the general belief that:
    1. We should expect this kind of behavior simply because we are nurses. "It is part of job" is the myth perpetuated.
    2. We are expected to and deemed to be control these situations. If a situation resulted in violence on our person, somehow we must be responsible. Somehow our patients never are responsible.
    3. It is believed that we can arbitrarily restrain people via chemical or mechanical means, folks don't realize there is a process we have to follow in order to protect ourselves legally if a situation calls for the use of restraints.
    Last edit by DusktilDawn on Dec 29, '05
  13. by   Ruby Vee
    Quote from grannynurse fnp student
    anyone who has been physically assaulted has the right to file a police report, regardless if they are a nurse or a patient. and it will be investigated. one should notify the supervisor or relevant nursing person and inform them of what has happen and ones intent to make a formal complaint. hopefully the nursing administration will support the individual making the complaint.

    grannynurse
    theoretically, yes. you have the right to file a police report . . . but good luck finding a nursing administration to support you. in the current "customer service" climate, nurses come last. if you notify your supervisor of your intent to file a complaint, you may find yourself suspected of being less than a "team player," and your job may become very uncomfortable at best. complaints are discouraged.
    ruby

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