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Being re-allocated

Disasters   (370 Views | 7 Replies)

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I just want to hear from other nurses about their experience being forced to re-allocate at work. I work in a procedure lab and I have been pulled to become a floor nurse at the hospital I work in.
If I could go back in time and choose, I’d stay at home without pay until my department opened back up. But here we are, I’ve been forced to take on a patient assignment and go back to working the floor.
I know everyone is going through so much right now. I‘m having a hard time adjusting and would like to hear from others on how their employer has handled this situation. Are a lot of nurses being forced back to the bedside? If so, are you taking patients on your own? How are you handling it?

Edited by Nic2003

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31 Posts; 471 Profile Views

I was and I quit. I specifically chose my non-bedside nursing job due to my own preferences, health issues, and lack of potential exposure to things I could bring home to immunocompromised family. When push came to shove, I elected to leave versus being put in an unsafe situation in which I wouldn't normally even be considered qualified for (I.e. "warm body" situation).

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20 Posts; 1,057 Profile Views

I totally agree. I wish I could quit. I might tell them to take me off the PCU schedule and see how well that goes. I didn’t mind helping, I wanted to help but they’re forcing myself and other nurses into unsafe practices. It’s so frustrating. They keep saying, “Everyone’s out of their comfort zone but when we get this influx of patients then we’ll need all hands on deck to take a patient assignment.” Well, if that’s the case is management going to put on a pair of scrubs and come to the floor to help? Let’s see them reuse a N95 mask and see how they do.

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I am really sorry to hear this is happening to you. I am in management and just so you know I do fully expect to reuse an n95 if there are any left- I am in scrubs everyday since this broke and have been rounding and assisting to move covid patients that are getting upgraded- assisted in donning/ doffing in ICU so folks can move quickly with their PAPRs and I do whatever else folks need and ensure I do not get it the way. When it comes to it I will take an assignment as I have been taking healthstreams updating my skills watching and shadowing on the floors. The only thing I cannot do is give meds- and I will ask the charge RN to do that as we are implementing a team nursing model here at our hospital. We have also made classes available to all RNs on respiratory assessment, nursing basics and the course of the covid patient . I am here because I wanted to glean information about what else I can do to assist those who are moving into areas where they are unfamiliar- I do think there will be a fair amount of PTSD after this. PTSD after 16 years in an understaffed ICU is what drove me from the bedside and into administration for the last 20. In my position here I am not all powerful, but I do have influence and I see myself when I look at our staff and I want to do right by them as much as I can - I say the serenity prayer every hour:

God Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.

Your insights will be invaluable to me - Thank you

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20 Posts; 1,057 Profile Views

Thank you both for your replies. At this point I’ve had thoughts of leaving nursing. I told them I’d be happy to help wherever I can as a second pair of nurse hands. I’m ready to give meds and do other tasks but when they force me to become a PCU nurse overnight without the proper training, I can’t even put in to words the disappointment I have.
There are protocols and policies floor nursing has that I’m not familiar with as I’m not a floor nurse.

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adventure_rn is a BSN and specializes in NICU, PICU.

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12 hours ago, Nic2003 said:

I told them I’d be happy to help wherever I can as a second pair of nurse hands. I’m ready to give meds and do other tasks but when they force me to become a PCU nurse overnight without the proper training, I can’t even put in to words the disappointment I have.

Are you absolutely certain that they'll make you take a full assignment, or is it just conjecture? Most places that are re-deploying staff are using a team nursing approach where the regular staff actually manage the patient big-picture, while the re-deployed nurses do task-y things as helping hands (med passes, bed baths, repositioning, answering call bells). The floats don't take on their own assignments, but rather they team up with with a staff nurse who delegates tasks to them.

In NICU our census remains very high, and if a large proportion of our staff gets sick, we're going to float procedural/clinic nurses to our unit as helping hands doing things like diapers and feeds. With floats, the regular NICU nurses could take on assignments with double or triple the number of patients we usually have.

Similarly, in the adult ICU, pairing floats with ICU nurses mean that the ICU nurses could care for 3-4 patients instead of 1-2.

I know it isn't what you signed up for, but I'm sure the extra assistance would be greatly appreciated your colleagues on the floor.

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9 Followers; 3,809 Posts; 29,068 Profile Views

1 hour ago, adventure_rn said:

Are you absolutely certain that they'll make you take a full assignment, or is it just conjecture? Most places that are re-deploying staff are using a team nursing approach where the regular staff actually manage the patient big-picture, while the re-deployed nurses do task-y things as helping hands (med passes, bed baths, repositioning, answering call bells). The floats don't take on their own assignments, but rather they team up with with a staff nurse who delegates tasks to them.

This^. We are being re-allocated from ambulatory to in-patient as well using the team model. OP before you do something drastic best to find out exactly what the expectations are of the staff being floated in. At my facility they are evaluating experience and skill set before determining where we are being sent. We are anxious, of course, but we also realize that this is an extraordinary situation and it is only temporary. Get your facts first before you do anything.

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20 Posts; 1,057 Profile Views

My expectations were to be a secondary nurse on the covid unit to an actual PCU nurse, which I’m happy to do. I want to help. I went in one night for my shift and I was given my own patient assignment. It was only one patient but still, I’m not a PCU nurse so I brought my concern up with the charge nurse and was told basically to deal with it since everyone’s out of their comfort zone trying to help. I took that assignment that night and did my best. I was also told that night that I could be given up to 3 patients to take on my own.
I spoke with my manager and the director the next day to clarify this and was told that it was expected for me and a few other float nurses to take on our own patient assignment. I did let them know I wasn’t comfortable with that. I’m happy to help but only as a secondary nurse. Since then, I haven’t had an issue.

There are several other nurses that have been re-allocated that are having to take on their own assignments. Whether they’ve volunteered to do that or not, I’m not sure.

My last shift was fine. I was secondary nurse and did whatever I could to help. I like to stay busy so it’s nice to be able to run around and help.
Thanks for everyone’s responses:)

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