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B.C. nurses call 911 to deal with collapsed man

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by blackadder111 blackadder111 (New Member) New Member

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Health officials are investigating after nurses at a B.C. hospital allegedly refused to assist an 86-year-old patient who collapsed – and called 911 instead.

Stephen Braybrooke says his father Jim suddenly fell to the ground Thursday morning while they were riding an elevator to the sixth floor of Peace Arch Hospital in White Rock.

When the doors opened, Braybrooke called out to a nearby nursing station to help. The nurses' response left him flabbergasted.

"All the nurses were behind the station and none of them would come forward," he told CTV News. "They were like 10 feet, 12 feet away."

http://www.ctvbc.ctv.ca/servlet/an/local/CTVNews/20110122/bc_nurses_911_110122/20110122?hub=BritishColumbiaHome

................

Brutal.....:mad:

Edited by brian

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Sarah010101 specializes in Med-Surg.

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I am almost positive that there is a fraser health policy about coverage/liability issues of the nurse if attending to a patient who is not admitted to the hospital. If this is a union thing or a fraser health thing, I am not sure. However I cant see how pressing a code blue button can hurt anyone... even if it is not on an admitted patient. I hope that if I see a family member of a patient hit the floor and is not breathing that someone would call a code blue and not stand back and say "not my patient"

However I am wondering because I do know that Peace Arch and hospitals in the fraser health region have replaced many RN's with LPN's of some who do not have the knowledge to deal with some situations. Then again there are a ton of RN's out there who are incompetent as well. All I am getting at is what the whole story was... whether it was a unit clerk/volunteer/sudexo worker at the counter etc.

I hope the real story comes out soon. Will be interested how this is going to turn out and what actions will be taken. There is a reason why the "nurses" or whoever was there did not act...

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Fiona59 has 18 years experience.

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I am almost positive that there is a fraser health policy about coverage/liability issues of the nurse if attending to a patient who is not admitted to the hospital. If this is a union thing or a fraser health thing, I am not sure. However I cant see how pressing a code blue button can hurt anyone... even if it is not on an admitted patient. I hope that if I see a family member of a patient hit the floor and is not breathing that someone would call a code blue and not stand back and say "not my patient"

However I am wondering because I do know that Peace Arch and hospitals in the fraser health region have replaced many RN's with LPN's of some who do not have the knowledge to deal with some situations. Then again there are a ton of RN's out there who are incompetent as well. All I am getting at is what the whole story was... whether it was a unit clerk/volunteer/sudexo worker at the counter etc.

I hope the real story comes out soon. Will be interested how this is going to turn out and what actions will be taken. There is a reason why the "nurses" or whoever was there did not act...

Sarah, that is one of the worst slams towards LPNs by a nursing student that I have ever read. Every LPN must be a holder of a current CPR certificate to work, just as their RN counterpart must hold a valid certificate. I've never had a patient I've coded say "jeesh, I wish an RN had done my chest compressions".

First, there had to be a Charge Nurse present on the unit who would have had the ultimate decision and will be held responsible. Secondly, the hospital administrator in the story seems to be on board with what his staff did or did not do.

I've participated in a similar scenario when a patient coded in an elevator near my unit. One unit (staffed only by RNs) didn't respond at all because they were on workplace accomodations (we couldn't believe that was their reason).

I know in my hospital, you code everyone. If they are outside or in the parking lots you call 911 and start CPR.

No unit is ever without a Charge or an Acting Charge.

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joanna73 is a BSN, RN and specializes in geriatrics.

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Well since we don't know the whole story, its unfair to speculate about who is at fault. And the whole RN vs LPN issue...well, its no wonder why there can be so much animosity between nurses with the attitudes about roles. Currently, there is very little difference in scope between LPNs and RNs at many facilities. The LPNs have as much knowledge as the RN, except maybe some of the Advanced Practice Nurses. And yeah, so I am an RN with some good skills. Nevertheless, since I am a new RN, I can guarantee that the LPN who has worked for 10 years knows way more than I do. That does not mean I am incompetent, either. But having a designation doesn't necessarily mean a lot. I think the LPNs are not appreciated they way they should be. And, as was pointed out, we all have CPR, common sense (I hope) and are capable of calling a code or helping someone in need.

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XB9S has 22 years experience and specializes in Advanced Practice, surgery.

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Can we please take this back to the topic at hand and not make it a LPN / RN debate, that is not what this is about at all, let me give you fair warning if it continues to be this LPN / RN debate I will remove those off topic posts.

I always think when reading these articles that there must be more to it, it's easy to condemn without having the full information and I certainly struggle to think that these nurses stood by and did nothing.

I'm not sure how it works in the US or other countries in the UK an investigation would take place by the organisation but because of confidentiality and employment law if individuals are reprimanded you would be unlikely to find what the outcome was. Are you likely to get any more information about what actually happened here?

Edited by XB9S

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HonestRN specializes in cardiac, ortho, med surg, oncology.

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Sounds like this happened in Canada and SarahUFVsn has the most familiarity with the system even though a student nurse. Maybe some more Canadian nurses will chime in.....

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Orange Tree specializes in Medical Surgical Orthopedic.

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I'm not in Canada, but we've called rapid response on a down visitor before and been told that they couldn't legally touch her. She hadn't coded yet, but she was pretty close. We had to call ER and have her go through the system like a new admission would.

I guess when you call a code, it is the ER doctor who comes. But do most places call code blues on visitors who haven't coded? I'm curious about policies in other hospitals.

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10,126 Visitors; 611 Posts

As a student I once had a visitor go down (faint) while in hospital visiting a loved one. I ran over with a dynamap to get a bp etc and was told that I should just call security and get them to escort her down to emerg. As she wasn't admitted we weren't supposed to help. I did a bp anyway and I'm sure if she coded we would have done something but that's what I was told...I suppose...if I accidentally did a bp on a fistula or an arm with lymph-edema, or I somehow dislodged a clot or did other damage the hospital would be liable?

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SlightlyMental_RN specializes in chemical dependency detox/psych.

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As a student I once had a visitor go down (faint) while in hospital visiting a loved one. I ran over with a dynamap to get a bp etc and was told that I should just call security and get them to escort her down to emerg. As she wasn't admitted we weren't supposed to help. I did a bp anyway and I'm sure if she coded we would have done something but that's what I was told...I suppose...if I accidentally did a bp on a fistula or an arm with lymph-edema, or I somehow dislodged a clot or did other damage the hospital would be liable?

I don't think you would be liable, as you were responding in what would be considered (I'm not sure of the legal wording) the reasonable response by a health care professional.

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BrnEyedGirl has 18 years experience as a BSN, MSN, RN, APRN and specializes in Cardiac, ER.

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Wow,..I'm not in Canada, and I'm sure there is more to this story, but anyone on hospital property would be assisted by staff where I work. The patient would have been checked for breathing et respers, if CPR indicated it would have been started, if not the pt would be placed on a stretcher and sent to the ER. If a pt is unconscious there is implied consent same as if your are found down at the mall or injured in a MVI.

Just as a side note,...if the situation were a bit different, as in the syncopal episode mentioned earlier, if the pt is conscious, we would encourage the pt to go to the ER. We do not check VS or blood sugar etc, primarily because what do you do with that information in the middle of the hallway? "Mrs Jones your BP is 90/40 (or your blood sugar is 38) you need to go to the ER." We already established that fact when you hit the floor! The tables could turn, when you say your BP 120/68, sugar 94, the nurse assures the guest that those are normal, guest blows it off as stress etc, when actually she was just in Vfib for 4 min causing her syncope!

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SlightlyMental_RN specializes in chemical dependency detox/psych.

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Wow,..I'm not in Canada, and I'm sure there is more to this story, but anyone on hospital property would be assisted by staff where I work. The patient would have been checked for breathing et respers, if CPR indicated it would have been started, if not the pt would be placed on a stretcher and sent to the ER. If a pt is unconscious there is implied consent same as if your are found down at the mall or injured in a MVI.

Just as a side note,...it the situation were a bit different, as in the syncopal episode mentioned earlier, if the pt is conscious, we would encourage the pt to go to the ER. We do not check VS or blood sugar etc, primarily because what do you do with that information in the middle of the hallway? "Mrs Jones your BP is 90/40 (or your blood sugar is 38) you need to go to the ER." We already established that fact when you hit the floor! The tables could turn, when you say your BP 120/68, sugar 94, the nurse assures the guest that those are normal, guest blows it off as stress etc, when actually she was just in Vfib for 4 min causing her syncope!

Same in my hospital.

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CT Pixie has 10 years experience as a BSN, RN.

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However I am wondering because I do know that Peace Arch and hospitals in the fraser health region have replaced many RN's with LPN's of some who do not have the knowledge to deal with some situations. Then again there are a ton of RN's out there who are incompetent as well. All I am getting at is what the whole story was... whether it was a unit clerk/volunteer/sudexo worker at the counter etc.

Regardless of whether or not the "nurses" were RN's, LPN's, APRN's or whatever letters go before the N in the title..ALL nurses should respond to "man down". I'm sure the whole story isn't out yet but I have to believe there is more. I cannot fathom how so many "nurses" would just allow a person no assistance for 9 minutes while they waited for the Paramedics.

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