VS and when to tell your nurse

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    Please please please alert your nurse if you get a vital sign reading that is not within normal limits! Alert your nurse right away BEFORE it gets charted. S/he may want it redone by you or s/he may want to redo it. Please do NOT just chart it or write it down and leave for the nurse to find on her/his own. It is within your scope to know the normal limits for VS. Refresh your memory on them if need be. When in doubt, tell your nurse!!!

    I'm posting this because I recently had a way off BP from my CNA. She knew it wasn't normal yet she didn't bring it to my attention. I redid the BP manually myself when I got around to noticing the note she left for me and it was normal, no harm to patient. When I talked to her about it she acknowledged it was an abnormal BP reading but had no excuse for not bringing it to my immediate attention.

    All turned out ok and it was a learning experience for her that I'm wanting to share with you all here. You guys are SO valuable to nurses... you truly are our eyes and ears in so many situations. It's a team effort to take care of our patients/residents. Thanks to all of you for the hard work you do!
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    I agree. Many times abnormal vitals aren't reported to me until an hour after they're taken. I'm busy doing all my work and expect abnormals to be reported quickly. Patient safety is primary!

    ~ No One Can Make You Feel Inferior Without Your Consent -Eleanor Roosevelt ~
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    At my old hospital, each nurse didn't have a phone, so it required going from room to room looking for the nurse.

    I was the tech who didn't bother. I sat in the room with the patient, called the charge nurse at the desk, asked if it was safe to leave the patient, and only moved to my next patient when the charge said it was okay. (pt has high BP, nurse in med room getting BP med, ok for you to move on)

    Luckily I was doing this method. Management liked the idea and yet nothing was ever said to me, aside from my nurses applauding me for caring for the patients and doing what is of utmost priority. It's now mandatory on the unit for the techs. Too many were writing down numbers and moving on without thinking of the consequences.

    And if you are able to take accu checks or bedside glucose checks - for the love of all things sweet, if you get a low blood sugar, even in an unsymptomatic patient, give them and orange juice and get the nurse at the bedside. Don't just walk away from Mr. Glucose of 40!


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