Does this seem unfair to you???? Please advise.

  1. Hi, I'm new here and I certainly don't mean to gripe but...for the past month or so I've been coming home increasingly frustrated with work. Don't get me wrong- I love my job in L&D. I work in a busy Family Birth Center and have been nursing for about 1 1/2 years, so I'm still pretty new.

    The problem is, I'm noticing that I keep getting stuck with what I feel is a disproportionate amount of work compared to my coworkers. For example, at work yesterday I ended up with a fresh admit SROM, orders for high dose Pitocin, all that good stuff. Got her all set, she was spanish speaking only so did all the admit stuff via interpreter phone, etc. Go back out to the desk to turn in her labs and another pt presents at the desk, obviously hurting. I glance at the board, there's one nurse with NO pt, and another who has an OB check for decreased FM. Considering I"m still working with my admit. The unit secretary calls into the pt's room that I'm in, and says, "Hey I need you to come take this Pt" so being the nice nurse that I am, I do. My mistake, I guess.

    She's in active labor, arrives at 6/100/-1, granted she is a prime but she's huffing and puffing. So...I'm figuring this other nurse will assume care of one of my pts considering they're both active (plenty of times we take 2 active pts but that's when there's not staff to do anything but, but I digress...)

    So..I see my shift coordinator who's mosied back in from break and I glance up at the board, (my second pt is now 8 cm, mind you and going quick) and I'm running like a chicken with it's head cut off. Shift coordinator says, "Calm down. You know technically by the law until the pt is complete, you can legally assume care of them both". What was this- a threat or what?

    So here's the breakdown at this point: Me with one pt 8cm/0 station wanting an epidural, plus my SROM pt 3-4 cm/high dose pit (about 30 mu at this point). One nurse has an NST, one nurse has an OB check who ends up going home. The anesthesiologist comes in to do my epidural and says, "What do you have 3 pts or something?Are you the only one working today or what?" and I say, "No, I have two" and he says, "Well there's a bunch of people sitting on their butts out there. Is it favoritism or what?" I explain I'm too busy to even worry about it.

    Anyway, thank you for reading this far if you're still with me, but the shift ended that way as well, with me with 2 active pts, and one nurse with none, one with an OB check. Night shift comes on and again (this is happening frequently lately) says, are you going to let her do all the work or what?

    I'm getting frustrated. My legs are literally cramping up on the way home from work. I'm tired beyond belief and it feels like I'm being taken advantage of. The problem is, I'm reluctant to say anything because I do have a reputation as a hard worker, but plus I do have to work with these same people week after week.

    Any suggestions, please please please????
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  2. 27 Comments

  3. by   Liddle Noodnik
    Shannon

    Don'tcha love it? I get the same thing, not on L& D, and no offers to help. I can see "misunderestimating" a new patient (more than one first thought) but for no one to be offering to help? I guess you gotta start asking, and recommend people start using their vision benefits if they can't see what is going on!
  4. by   Shamrock
    What an awful night. NO! has always worked for me,
    especially if the load is so uneven!
  5. by   I_Love_Donuts
    =) ...I know the feeling!! Ask for help...! Why don't you talk to your headnurse...that's what I did and it worked!!
    Good luck!!
  6. by   BadBird
    They will only give you as much crap as you are willing to take, learn to speak up and demand help.
  7. by   MandyInMS
    Originally posted by BadBird
    They will only give you as much crap as you are willing to take, learn to speak up and demand help.
    AMEN!!!
  8. by   fergus51
    That is ABSOLUTELY RIDICULOUS!!!! I have only cared for 2 women in active labor under very unusual circumstances and certainly not when another nurse had no patients. You NEED to speak up about this because it is unfair and unsafe, and if you don't it will only continue.
  9. by   imenid37
    you are gettin' pooped on honey. don't let them do it to you. you'll get burned out and could end up having a bad situation on your hands. nurses who do this stuff won't back you up. they won't say, we weren't busy, but we gave her two active pt's. to see if she could sink or swim. that is what they are doing. it's a nasty, mean, female thing that some veteran nurses do. i think it is occurring less than when i was fresh out of school 16 years ago, but it still happens.

    you've got to speak up for yourself. just because these gals got tx'd like this when they were relatively new nurses doesn't mean anything. it's not safe and it's not right. sure they'll talk about you for awhile and snicker that you can't handle it. so what? you know they wouldn't take that kind of assignment themselves and you don't want a bad outcome. Best of luck to you. you sound like you are a real go getter and should be proud of the job you're doing. remember not everyone is like this. too bad, no one you work w/ has the nuggets to stand up for you.
  10. by   gwenith
    Bullying and believe me that is what is happening - predominantly happenss to good, hard working people - which is why it is so counterproductive.

    YOu are going to hate to do this but DOCUMENT!! Just write things asa you have here - it does NOT have ot be a legal document. Write how it makes you feel and why it is difficult to address the issue. Especially write why it is difficult to address the issue. This may one day save your BUTT in court.

    Tell the person who is doing nothing that shift what you are doing and explain that in the event of a court case you are going to be able to prove that thw work allocation was unfair. Don't belabour the point just let her know that if it came to court she may be up there justifying why she did not assist you during the shift. Take your concerns to management - the shift co-ordinator and state that you feel it is neccessary to document the unfair staffing ratios a situation that has been noted by other staff members and medical staff. Then let her know that if it continues you will have to take it further up the chain of command.

    Unfortunately this may cause the bullying to escalate. "He who doeth evil hateth the light". Bullies HATE to be found out and will either drop what they are doing straight away or start to try to pick holes in you and your work so that you become so unsure of yourself that you are afraid to take it up with management.

    One of the ways around this is to quietly recrruit management BEFORE you confront the nurse manager. Go to them "unofficially" give them a heads - up on what you are dealing with discuss tactics with them, including discussion of the situation with your colleages as I have outlined. This cuts off one of thier clubs that they may use to threaten you and it gives you some security.

    Make no mistake when you have bullying especially when there is cohort bullying (it is cohort because the other staff are going along with this) then you face the classical three options.

    1) Change it
    2) Put up with it
    3) Get out

    Number two I feel is never an option. One of the best resources on the net for bullying is

    http://www.nurseadvocate.org/

    Hope this helps and if you need a shoulder to cry on or another brain to work out strategies feel free to PM me.
  11. by   ktwlpn
    I agree that you are getting p**ped on...Remember my mantra-"There are no victims-just volunteers" So when someone tries to p**p on you-move over....You will earn the respect of your co-workers and nurse manager by standing up for yourself-this happens to many of the new kids on the block....
  12. by   bagladyrn
    My move in this situation (and most of us have been there) would be to inform 1)the manager, then 2) the physician that I was turning off the pitocin on pt. "A" as the acuity of my assignment made it impossible to safely monitor her. This would result in either the manager getting one of the others off their butt or in the physician throwing a hissy with the same result. If he threw it at me, I'd very sweetly suggest that perhaps the manager could find another nurse to assist as we all want to assure the safety of his patients and the proper carrying out of his orders (I can run a line of b.s. with the best of them then I'd transfer his call to the manager.
  13. by   SmilingBluEyes
    Better learn NOW to stand up for yourself. You patients' safety and your license are on the line, especially in OB, possibly the most ligitious area of nursing you can work in. Take the advice of the above, forget what's "fair" and protect yourself and your patients by refusing these out-of-balance assignments. Do what you have to to stop it NOW.
  14. by   canoehead
    Just go up to the nurse with no pts and say "I need to give you report on a pt that just came in. I already have someone with Pit going and I need to get back to her."

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