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Did I overreact to a scheduling error?

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by Zippy83 Zippy83 (Member) Member Nurse

467 Profile Views; 63 Posts

I’m in home health, and admittedly already a bit burnt out with patients starting to treat us like Uber. 

 I have one patient who I visit 4 times a week. She’s already a bit difficult to schedule. She lives very close to me but doesn’t want to be seen too early or too late so she can’t be my first or last visit, but wants me to come at an exact time based on her whims. It’s been an ongoing conversation with her. 

A few weeks ago I told the nurse that alternates visits on this patient (she’s daily visits) that I might go out of town the weekend of 9/21, and asked if she wants to cover those days or should I ask the office for cover. She said she usually doesn’t like to work weekends. 

My family did not end up making the plans for that weekend trip so I never told the office anything, since there was no issue. 

 On Saturday, I have several visits to do and I am flying around to see my son’s soccer game right in the middle.The patient wanted me there at 2 PM my son’s game ended very close to that so I was rushing like a maniac to the visit not wanting to deal with her drama. 

I get there at about 215pm expecting to be yelled that, but instead there’s another nurse already there. After some investigating I find that the nurse who alternates visits with me took it upon herself to tell the office that I was going to be off on Saturday, and nobody at the office called or sent me a text to confirm whether this is true, they just got me  coverage.  First of all, I don’t know why they wouldn’t be concerned if I was going out of town and not telling them myself, and second of all it would’ve been for the whole weekend, not just that day. So either way they had bad information. 

I then sent out a flurry of texts post to the other nurse, and the scheduler at the office. I didn’t say anything mean or unprofessional, but I did tell the first nurse to please never take it upon herself to report to the office anything about my days off or schedule, that I will always handle that myself. And I told the scheduler the same thing, that I would never go out of town without getting my visits covered and no matter what she hears from any other field nurse, always double check with me directly. 

Although I wasn’t mean, I was quite long-winded in these texts just like I’m being now in this post, and I sent them out immediately after the fact on Saturday afternoon instead of waiting til Monday. I don’t know if I overreacted, I just felt like this was a common sense issue and I could not believe that both of those nurses would’ve made the decisions they made. 

 Not a huge deal when all is said and done, but I wouldn’t have had to rush out of my son’s game if I had known another nurse was there, and I did rush over there and I’m not getting paid. 



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The other nurse and the scheduler were both wrong.

It is usually best to cool off before expressing upset about things.  We can make ourselves very unpopular when acting in anger.  Not that you were wrong to be upset, just that it is best to cool off first, as you already stated.

I don't think I would ever promise a specific time to a patient, because you know how plans can so easily fail.  Try to give her a range of 20 - 30 minutes either side of a specific time, and call her if you are going to be later or earlier than that.  If she gets upset and says not to come, well, that's how it is.  What does your boss say about specific times/definite times.

Glad you got to see son's game, even if rushed.

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