Circulators how do you handle difficult OR technicians - page 2

by ArmyTwinRN 4,603 Views | 19 Comments

I'm in a great place in my career right now and I love my job. I only dread working when I know I'll have to work with a certain ST. She is very lazy, nasty, and passive aggressive. She's in nursing school and loves to slam... Read More


  1. 1
    Quote from ValentinaRN
    I was in the same situation. In my honest opinion I feel that jealousy plays a huge role in why some STs behave in such a way. I have heard them say that circulators don't do any work. Which is complete BS!! I say document every conversation and every instance of bullying and intimidation. It may take a while for something to change but it worked for me!
    I think you are right she actually said all we do is type on the computer all day...which she knows isn't true! If she despises nurses so much why is she going to school to be one?
    DoingGodsWork likes this.
  2. 4
    why don't both you nurses write the ----- up? she is toxic to your dpt and this is lateral violence which we are supposed to be doing away with.
  3. 2
    I am a fairly new nurse and new to the circulating role and I understand 100% what you are going through. I once had a tech tell me that she made more money than all the nurses on staff because she was there so long. What I said to her, but not in these frank words was that the difference between scrub techs and nurses is that this is all you can do, I can go into any specialty I choose. I was at my 1st position for 6 months and had 2 different techs with the attitude that I was in the room for their needs. They would tell me that I needed to get them everything they needed before I took care of positioning the patient. The anesthesia team was responsible for bringing the patient into the room so I would do all I could for the techs, but the minute the patient was in the room they had to wait. As a nurse my first priority is patient safety. I will not put my patients and my license at risk for some pretentious scrub tech with an attitude problem. I never once got confrontational but silence is golden. Everyone understands silence. I made sure they had everything they needed for the very beginning of the case so the surgeon was not waiting for anything then as the case went on I would then get them what they needed. I refuse to be pushed around by techs. Luckily I am now at a wonderful hospital where everyone is polite and says please and thank you. We have a system in place where we can anonymously report disruptive and unacceptable behavior (even badly behaving Docs can be reported) online so everyone is really careful how we handle each other and patients. These types of negative people can make your job very difficult and stressful. Keep good notes of what is going on and bring it management. If need be you can request not to work with that particular tech at all. Make it all about patient safety and a pleasant experience for the patient. Patient centered care is what we focus on, start there. Good Luck! Believe things will get better!
    ArmyTwinRN and icuRNmaggie like this.
  4. 0
    Quote from DoingGodsWork
    What I said to her, but not in these frank words was that the difference between scrub techs and nurses is that this is all you can do, I can go into any specialty I choose. :
    Maybe the techs were making you run for things because of an attitude like this. Saying this, even if you weren't that frank, gives the impression that you think you are better than the scrub tech. Like I said before, maybe you were put with an experienced scrub for a reason.
  5. 1
    Even though I am not in the OR very often, I would suggest talking to her alone first and politely say " you seem to be in a bad mood. Is there a problem?"

    If she slams her books down say "are you angry about something?"

    I would try to keep it light and say "I just want to give you heads up. I am bringing back the next case in about XX minutes. "

    As to dropping the Bovie and suction on the floor check with your manager or charge for clarification then if it happens again you can restate what you were told and by whom.

    You have to learn how to have the crucial conversations with your colleagues. I get a sense that you might need to work on having a confident and professional demeanor. She is your colleague and not your friend. Just keep your focus on the work at hand.

    People tend to mirror the behavior of their coworkers. Be super polite and super professional and maybe she will shape up when she realizes you aren't phased by her behavior.
    Last edit by icuRNmaggie on Jun 10
    ArmyTwinRN likes this.
  6. 0
    Quote from springchick1
    Maybe the techs were making you run for things because of an attitude like this. Saying this, even if you weren't that frank, gives the impression that you think you are better than the scrub tech. Like I said before, maybe you were put with an experienced scrub for a reason.
    I just want to point out that myself the OP didn't make this statement.
  7. 1
    Update: I continued being myself around this technician. I'm a great OR nurse who's great at my job. I'm usually tugged in many services because the surgeons enjoy working with me. I'm always prepared, upbeat, smiling, and I love having great time on the job.

    The technician has done a complete 180! We are very friendly now.

    I honestly think the turning point was giving her some of the attitude back (professionally). I decided when she was being nasty that I would dish it back.

    I think she continued with the behavior for as long as she did because I didn't respond to her nastiness. With her personality and deep seeded issues (which I still haven't figured out) I HAD to respond unfortunately...but it all worked out.
    icuRNmaggie likes this.
  8. 0
    Quote from ArmyTwinRN
    I just want to point out that myself the OP didn't make this statement.
    Don't worry. I knew it wasn't you.
  9. 0
    Quote from springchick1
    Don't worry. I knew it wasn't you.
    Ok, great! ;-)
  10. 0
    Hi
    from reading your word i understand that she is your senior ,
    well me my self i've worked with such bad behavior people , my advice to you dont complain to the nurse manager youu only making the situation worse , be patient , try to understand their personalities , for the beginning follow her orders & then by the time when you understand & get familiar with basic routine , take a few steps ahead of her for example :
    chick your assignment , go to your assigned OR room chick & set up your room .
    believe me you'll get every one respect & support by the time .
    good luck .
    Last edit by dianah on Jul 16 : Reason: Terms of Service


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