Quote from rnnow1
I'm not surprised by this. After all dialysis providers have replaced nurses with techs as much as possible. From what my employer tells me, techs are often used in the critical care areas of the hospitals in metropolitan areas, administering the dialysis treatment. There the primary RN is responsible for EVERYTHING with regard to the patient's care and safety. The tech has limited knowledge regarding the pt's overall condition and what hemodynamic changes mean. This is very disconcerting to thoses of us who have worked as acute dialysis nurses. Let's face it...some the docs, as well as the people we work for would have a bunch of chimps doing the treatment if they thought they could get away with it because they do not spend the time at the bedside and they have forgotten and no longer CARE that an experienced, RN with good clinical skills is BETTER equiped to give a SAFE treatment and the patients will be dialyzed with better accuracy. The truth is: The dialysis nurse in an acute setting needs to have a good understanding of the drugs being administered, and what the hemodynamic readings mean. If you have the knowledge and demonstrate these skills when dialyzing pts in ICU, you will gain the other nurses trust, cooperation and comraderie, not to mention the respect of the nephrologists.
What say you?
Dialysis has been "dumbing down" for years. In it's infancy dialysis was only done by Physicians then only RN's and now techs.. Some of the technical aspects are acceptable to be performed by techs. i.e. sticks. After all teenagers are inserting IV's all the time in our big cities and small towns. IV drug use......
Most of the lowering of standards are money driven ..Sorry to say. I for one won't work for less. I am highly skilled and studies have shown in every aspect of nursing that an RN makes a difference. When the powers that be realize that RN's make a difference in their bottom line long term it will be a great day in nursing. Do I think it will happen in my life time.. Probably not..
As an aside I see the ESRD regs require that the SW have a Master's HMMMMM..
Do I want to see dialysis go back to physicians. Certainly not. For one thing dialysis is a nursing function. Nursing is an art as much as a science.
Case in point.. We have a patient who has severe anxiety attacks on dialysis. The physician and CM (BTW) wanted medication. She got a scprit for Xanex but didn't take it until just before treatment and of course it hadn't kicked in. So when she went into her anxiety mode I used my nursing skills to reassure her that she was fine.. Telling her that she was anxious and that we were right here helping her... Worked as well as the medication. I bet she could get through the anxiety attack if we had time to "talk" her through it.
Tech have their place in dialysis but not as a sole caregiver certainly.