I don't want this to turn into a huge AB debate, but I do want to hear from those who are opposed to this and have to work around it, or else not be able to work in the job they love.
On my former unit, we did "therapeutic abortions" up to 20 weeks. Up until I had that job I was very pro choice. After seeing them, I have changed my views. I was told on interview for that job that they were always therapeutic ABs, but most turned out to be elective.
We weren't allowed to refuse them, but as the charge nurse, I ended up taking most of them bc it was easier to pray about it than listen to the grief from the other RNs. Now I'm on L&D and for some reason ABs are divided in our institution. The "wanted" and "unwanted" pregs. Either way, the line is very fine. Say for example on L&D we have a "wanted" preg that turns out to be Down's. So they will induce for that.
Who has to deal with this? And more importantly, who is like me and really disagrees with it but has to do it at work?
Last edit by pebbles1977 on Dec 31, '04
Dec 29, '04
I have worked with TA patients post-abortion (therapeutic means elective everywhere I have worked) and those inducing early because of birth defects (all of which were severe enough to be incompatible with life). I knew these would be a part of my job when i interviewed. I have never worked in the OR doing them or anything. Nurses have the right to decline to participate in these cases, and I personally think those that disagree with them should. It is in their best interests and in the best interests of their patients. That said, if you knew this would be a part of the job and said you'd do them, then perhaps you should try to find a place that is more consistent with your beliefs. There is nothing wrong with changing your views, but it can be unfair to your employer if it puts them in a real bind. Have you had a sitdown with your supervisor to explain your feelings on this matter?
Dec 29, '04
I work in a very large teaching hospital, in an inner city, and we provide AB services in the 2nd trimester (up to 24 weeks, I believe). We have a clinic who does the 1st trimester AB's.
We also have a very large nursing staff. We have approximately 400 live deliveries per month, but we honestly only rarely do "inductions" aka AB's on 2nd trimester pts.
When we do them, they are sometimes elective, sometimes because of severe (incompatible with live) anomalies. No matter what the reason, they are always hard on patients and staff alike.
We DO have the option of refusing to care for such a patient, and we all have filled out and signed a form stating when we will and will not care for such patients. We are given 4 categories to choose from:
1. I will care for all patients (elective and therapeutic).
2. I will care for patients seeking inductions/abortions for non-incompatible with life anomalies (ex: down's syndrome) and severe anomalies incompatible with life.
3. I will care for patients seeking inductions/abortions for severe anomalies that are incompatible with life only.
4. I choose not to care for any patients seeking abortions.
Of course, there is a clause in the paper stating that we will respond to all emergency needs of said patients, and answer call bells for said patients, even if we refuse to accept the assigment of AB pts.
It works well for us. I don't know the statistics of who will care for whom, but I would have to say overall, that we have a good division where there is never a shift that will NOT have at least a few nurses who will accept a patient assignment of this nature.
(notice how I didn't state my views, because I do not want to start a debate - only answering the original poster's questions)
Dec 29, '04
We don't do any TAbs on our floor. I am L&D in a smaller community hospital--about 140-170 births a month. I don't know if they do them down in the main OR. We are allowed to refuse to be assigned them for care if they did happen. I don't agree with it, but I don't know if I'd refuse to care for the people. I just couldn't say without having been in the situation.
Dec 29, '04
I admire all of those who do this, knowing it istn't "right". 3/4ths of my pregnancies weren't planned, but they are all good kids. Couldn't imagine dealing with this on a daily basis.
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