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RNewbieMA RNewbieMA (New) New Nurse

Has 1 years experience.

Hi, I’ve been a nurse for 3 years in November (been in healthcare for 10+) and I work closely with someone who is male (just adding that in for context) +30 yo and has been a nurse for 10 years.

We work in a small 5 bed PCU. I’ve been having a hard time working with him and I usually just ignore him, but it’s bugging me and I need professional advice. He is a very nice guy, don’t get me wrong- I just don’t think he’s a strong nurse... does it matter if I think that, absolutely not, but when is enough? Some examples:

-went into a covid + patients room with appropriate PPE and then when he needed something he came out into the hall, without doning PPE. He does this all the time with clean vs dirty!
-called an inappropriate RRT and then we all got the obligatory email “please read RRT protocol”

-had the doctor come to the bedside for a low blood sugar before giving dextrose and then the next morning said to the am nurse “I almost lost her 3 times” because of hypoglycemia?
-cannot prioritize, example patient needed to go on bipap because of respiratory distress and he was assessing and hanging an abx on a stable patient ... after I offered to hang the abx.
-he used to fall sleep all the time ... yes we work the overnight shift but still ... it was many occasions for long periods of time.
-he will be getting a patient at change of shift and won’t go in and help, Other people do ... because he needs to wipe down the nurses station and his computer... it’s happened three times.
-he will constantly be telling me if my tele is alarming and I’m always aware of my tele...but he lets his ding off.
-he makes very careless mistakes and he has no common sense, sorry 🤷🏼‍♀️

My issue is ...He has been brought up to management by nursing supervisors and doctors many times, I have yet to go to my manager because she doesn’t do anything about it and He is never spoken to and he is training people on the floor! I will ask him questions about his practice and he thinks “he offended me” when really I am the only one who calls him out and in a professional way. I’m not stupid, I’m not making more problems for myself, I work with him a ton. My question is am I being dramatic ? Like someone who’s been a nurse that long should not be that clueless ...so why do I feel bad ? I usually get along with everyone, but I don’t trust working with him. He’s the typical book smart nurse, but can’t deal with emergencies.
I think management should be doing remediation, correct ? Not having him train people ! Ugh sorry for the long post ! Thanks for your input.

Been there,done that, ASN, RN

Has 33 years experience.

"He has been brought up to management by nursing supervisors and doctors". Your manager knows EXACTLY what is going on with this coworker and has decided to ignore it. YOU are left to cover all of his issues.

I know it's not easy, especially now... you must remove yourself from the situation. I hope you you can transfer, because that guy is not going away.

TriciaJ, RN

Specializes in Psych, Corrections, Med-Surg, Ambulatory. Has 40 years experience.

This is where the Serenity Prayer comes in handy. If everyone and his brother knows about this guy then you're out of magic.

One day the jig will be up and it probably won't be pretty. All you can hope for is that the inevitable falls on your day off.

Meanwhile, CYA by being extra careful when you're working with him and chart your care meticulously. Call things to his attention in a friendly helpful way : (shake shake) "Sorry, you dozed off again." "Whoops. You're missing some PPE."

Good luck.

3 hours ago, RNewbieMA said:

Hi, I’ve been a nurse for 3 years in November (been in healthcare for 10+) and I work closely with someone who is male (just adding that in for context) +30 yo and has been a nurse for 10 years. [emphasis added]

[...]

And what exactly does any of this have to do with the situation you described?

RNewbieMA

Has 1 years experience.

Yeah, I was explaining that he’s been a nurse for a lot longer than me, the rest is fluff I guess 😉

RNewbieMA

Has 1 years experience.

36 minutes ago, TriciaJ said:

This is where the Serenity Prayer comes in handy. If everyone and his brother knows about this guy then you're out of magic.

One day the jig will be up and it probably won't be pretty. All you can hope for is that the inevitable falls on your day off.

Meanwhile, CYA by being extra careful when you're working with him and chart your care meticulously. Call things to his attention in a friendly helpful way : (shake shake) "Sorry, you dozed off again." "Whoops. You're missing some PPE."

Good luck.

Yeah before he went into said room I told him that the baby monitor that was in the room was a two way so I could hear him if he needed anything ... he still went into the room and came out in his gown, gloves, mask, face shield to the hall way and I said “oh you are considered dirty” and he looked at me and said “oh, I don’t know” and went back into the room. I am actually not worried about the sleeping compared to the nursing things and I guess part of me doesn’t think I need to babysit a 40 yo man who’s been a nurse for 10 years. My other co-workers have said things to him about other things and it’s always like “oh, I don’t know” or just “oh” there’s definitely a disconnect. Thanks for the advice

Been there,done that, ASN, RN

Has 33 years experience.

6 hours ago, chare said:

And what exactly does any of this have to do with the situation you described?

The coworker being male has a LOT to do with the situation. Only nine percent of nurses are male. Like it or not, believe it or not, men are treated better than women.

Sounds like untreated or poorly treated ADHD. Doesn't matter, I wouldn't say anything about it.

You could report him anonymously to people above your direct boss, who is refusing to straighten him out.

FallingInPlace, ADN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Med Surg, Hospice, Wound Care. Has 8 years experience.

Realistically, you know what you need to know. Management is aware of the problem, and has decided not to act on it, so they're not going to respond to your comments unless you have a much more serious incident involving patient safety. That leaves you with a choice, stay and live with it, or look for another position.

Serhilda, ADN, RN

Specializes in Cardiac Telemetry, ICU.

On 5/17/2020 at 10:15 PM, chare said:

And what exactly does any of this have to do with the situation you described?

Men are typically seen as more competent solely for being male, hence why it's relevant to his incompetence being ignored/unnoticed.

If he bothers you so much maybe it's time for you to move on? Time to remember that not everybody is perfect. Management is aware and are OK with it. He sounds a little ADHD and probably has anxiety to go with it. The more you "monitor" him the more tense he gets which means more mistakes. I would let management worry about him, be kind and go about my business.

Perhaps he's a relative of one of the decision makers and that's factoring into the situation?

gonzo1, ASN, RN

Specializes in ED, ICU, PSYCH, PP, CEN. Has 18 years experience.

Can you put down to work on different shifts than him? That's what I do when on of my coworkers is driving me crazy. Otherwise, I agree with all the above posters.

RNewbieMA

Has 1 years experience.

On 5/23/2020 at 9:54 AM, Jodine Stockham said:

If he bothers you so much maybe it's time for you to move on? Time to remember that not everybody is perfect. Management is aware and are OK with it. He sounds a little ADHD and probably has anxiety to go with it. The more you "monitor" him the more tense he gets which means more mistakes. I would let management worry about him, be kind and go about my business.

Yeah I don’t think anyone is perfect actually, we are people, we all have flaws. I have explored all my options. It’s hard because we have the same schedule because we are a small 5 bed unit. I have adhd with anxiety. I properly manage it because I am an adult. Lastly, I do not “monitor” him. I actually keep to myself most of the shift. I am a good coworker who always helps out and it seems like it’s a one way street with him. He wouldn’t even call in a breakfast order for one of my patients because he “didn’t know the patients diet” he didn’t even ask me or didn’t even look it up. He also left a unstable patients room with sp02 in the 60s!! To go do an ekg on a stable patient the other day. Please don’t make this into a personality thing, I have worked with all kinds of kinds and I’ve managed just fine.. I’m genuinely concerned and other people are too- and just shows how management doesn’t deal with issues. I’m always kind, always professional, always upfront.

I know that there is ALWAYS a chain of command, and that we will get in trouble if we do not follow it, nonetheless, I wonder if you can/should go to a nursing supervisor since your manager does nothing even when this co-worker is reported to physicians. But is sounds to me as if he is there for the long haul and has it made and that nothing is going to change, Believe me,

that situation would make me nuts, too! So I would be giving serious consideration to leaving and going to another job. Because when no one else will change, it's probably time for you to make a change! Best of luck to you, keep us updated!

LynnRN53

And I have to add, just because management is fine with it, doesn't mean it's actually YOU that have the problem. I have been a nurse 35 years and have seen a number of instances where another nurse is just unbelievably lazy, rude, not a team player, smart aleck (to use an old fashioned, but clean, term 🙂 and everyone, it seems, but the manager and/or nursing administration is aware of it and is upset about it, but for whatever reason, management/administration thinks he/she is just great. Some of the replies here indicate that folks think how you are looking at things is actually the problem, and, while that could be true, it's certainly possible that it's not true at all. Since I don't know you, I can't be sure, but I can tell you for certain that I have seen situations just as you described where the person whose behaviour is in question is thought by management to be "just fine." Good luck to you!