Discrimination in PT care??

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by xdrowe xdrowe Member

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xdrowe

xdrowe

116 Posts

And now for a tale from bizzaro land.

I worked with a doctor in an ER down South. He was an MIT graduate. He was a great doc with a wonderful sense of humor. Everybody loved and respected him. One night a patient came in complaining of the usual this or that. So it just so happened that when this aforementioned doctor came in to see the patient, the patient said to me "I don't want this doctor because he looks like he rode in on the short bus." This term I later found out was a derogatory one that referred to learning challenged individuals who often rode a truncated school bus to school for their special needs instruction.. Well the theatre of absurd denoument to this story is that in this case both patient and doctor happened to be, you got it, black.

I can affirm that I have been in situations where (1) white people have said "I don't want to be taken care of by black people." (2) where black people have said "I don't want to be taken care of by white people." (3) where black people have said "I don't want to be taken care of by black people" case in point the "short bus" affair. But there were many other such occurances and strange combinations of requests. And where both white people and black people didn't want to be taken care of by any people.

So you see in far too many instances what we may be really seeing here is not necessarily racism but an underlying longing of said patient to undergo a sorely needed psyche consult.

So dear colleagues in this type of situation try doing what I used to do when one race or another expresses a distaste for one race or another in caring for them. If you're in charge try to find a representative person of one race or another to care for this picyune person in giving them the best care humanly possible.

If you know what I mean.

It is always sad to see African-American's who are prejudice against every race, including their own.

pmo88

pmo88

Specializes in Medical-Surgical Nursing. Has 3 years experience. 13 Posts

Yup. In my unit we are almost always understaffed so these picky patients have no choice but to deal with whoever's on duty. It happened to me multiple times, and it hurt but I've learned not to get it to me.

Ruby Vee, BSN

Specializes in CCU, SICU, CVSICU, Precepting & Teaching. Has 40 years experience. 67 Articles; 14,008 Posts

Have any medical professionals ever experienced a patient or family members that had a preference for who cared for them? You know.. like that episode of Grey's Anatomy when a patient refused Miranda (African-American doc) from giving them care? Is this very real? If so, can you share your story? Did it bother you? Is there a protocol for events such as this?

Is this a homework assignment?

I'll bite. I almost always bite because I love this site and I like to write. I don't have many stories about PT care, though. I'm a nurse, not a PT.

I'm white, overweight and have been a nurse for four decades or so. I also work in an area where the predominate population is Black. (Please don't make me say African American because the majority haven't been near that continent in six or eight generations, and it tends to upset the actual Africans I work with. You know, the nurses from Kenya and Nigeria and so forth.) I wish I had a dollar for every time I've been called some variation of "fat white _itch" or "you fat, ugly white _itch". I've been "fired" from being that patient's nurse more than once, in favor of some nurse that has the proper skin color. And then that nurse (who is often an immigrant from Africa or the Caribbean) is fired for having an improper accent. I remember one shift when we had a patient who fired me for being the wrong skin color, my friend Elijah for being the right skin color but having the wrong accent, Marcus for having the right skin color and accent but the wrong sexual orientation (or so the patient assumed) and Diana -- because as an immigrant from Shanghai she had the wrong everything. I ended up taking care of him for the rest of the day as he'd fired everyone else and I was the most experienced nurse there. It was a hellish shift. I discovered just how many racist names and remarks could slide off my back in a single shift.

caliotter3

38,333 Posts

Is this a homework assignment?

I'll bite. I almost always bite because I love this site and I like to write. I don't have many stories about PT care, though. I'm a nurse, not a PT.

I'm white, overweight and have been a nurse for four decades or so. I also work in an area where the predominate population is Black. (Please don't make me say African American because the majority haven't been near that continent in six or eight generations, and it tends to upset the actual Africans I work with. You know, the nurses from Kenya and Nigeria and so forth.) I wish I had a dollar for every time I've been called some variation of "fat white _itch" or "you fat, ugly white _itch". I've been "fired" from being that patient's nurse more than once, in favor of some nurse that has the proper skin color. And then that nurse (who is often an immigrant from Africa or the Caribbean) is fired for having an improper accent. I remember one shift when we had a patient who fired me for being the wrong skin color, my friend Elijah for being the right skin color but having the wrong accent, Marcus for having the right skin color and accent but the wrong sexual orientation (or so the patient assumed) and Diana -- because as an immigrant from Shanghai she had the wrong everything. I ended up taking care of him for the rest of the day as he'd fired everyone else and I was the most experienced nurse there. It was a hellish shift. I discovered just how many racist names and remarks could slide off my back in a single shift.

This post just about sums up nursing in many geographical areas of the US.

CanadianAbroad

CanadianAbroad

176 Posts

I have been called a "Cracker" and the patient refused to allow me to care for them due to me being White. I work in a predominantly Black neighbourhood, and I never thought this could happen. I see a person for being human, and not the colour of their skin. As of recent, I have noticed a great increase in racial tensions with patients and being called "white girl". I just don't understand it.

jadelpn, LPN, EMT-B

51 Articles; 4,800 Posts

"Are you white, or Oreo?"

And a coworker from New Zeland called "that kiwi nurse"

Most recently, "you can't make a silk purse out of a sow's ear and that nurse is trash"

Ok,then....

calivianya, BSN, RN

Specializes in ICU. 2,418 Posts

My first nursing job was in the deep South (backwoods rural Georgia) and it was ugly. One of my coworkers, who was black, routinely got comments like, "You're so good for a black nurse!" Ugh. I just couldn't even. It was the little old 90 year old grandmas that usually said the ugliest things to our black nurses. The funny thing was the town was something like 50% black and 8% Hispanic as of the last census... so whites weren't even anywhere near half the population. You'd think somewhere that whites were the minority skin color the old white racists would learn to keep their mouths closed.

I've only dealt with racism personally twice - both black patients who stated very loudly they didn't want anything to do with me because I was white. It doesn't bother me at all. Regardless of my/their skin colors, patients with those sorts of preferences and desire to throw their weight around to get what they want aren't usually pleasant to take care of. It's always a blessing to get "fired" by people like that. I always dread it when a patient fires a coworker for whatever reason and I'm the only one available to pick up that assignment. You just know the rest of the shift is going to be awful.

xdrowe

xdrowe

116 Posts

Yup. In my unit we are almost always understaffed so these picky patients have no choice but to deal with whoever's on duty. It happened to me multiple times, and it hurt but I've learned not to get it to me.

Thanks for sharing this. I am glad you found the strength to not allow it to hurt your pride.

xdrowe

xdrowe

116 Posts

I have been called a "Cracker" and the patient refused to allow me to care for them due to me being White. I work in a predominantly Black neighbourhood, and I never thought this could happen. I see a person for being human, and not the colour of their skin. As of recent, I have noticed a great increase in racial tensions with patients and being called "white girl". I just don't understand it.

I understand that.. I try not to refer to people as a color. I'd rather say Caucasian. Just like I would rather be called African-American rather than Black guy or man.

xdrowe

xdrowe

116 Posts

My first nursing job was in the deep South (backwoods rural Georgia) and it was ugly. One of my coworkers, who was black, routinely got comments like, "You're so good for a black nurse!" Ugh. I just couldn't even. It was the little old 90 year old grandmas that usually said the ugliest things to our black nurses. The funny thing was the town was something like 50% black and 8% Hispanic as of the last census... so whites weren't even anywhere near half the population. You'd think somewhere that whites were the minority skin color the old white racists would learn to keep their mouths closed.

I've only dealt with racism personally twice - both black patients who stated very loudly they didn't want anything to do with me because I was white. It doesn't bother me at all. Regardless of my/their skin colors, patients with those sorts of preferences and desire to throw their weight around to get what they want aren't usually pleasant to take care of. It's always a blessing to get "fired" by people like that. I always dread it when a patient fires a coworker for whatever reason and I'm the only one available to pick up that assignment. You just know the rest of the shift is going to be awful.

Honestly, I would not hold it against an older patient. Why? Because there are several contributing factors to consider when dealing with someone in that age bracket. I hope that it eventually stops with the cohorts of the preceding generation.

NotYourMamasRN

NotYourMamasRN

Specializes in Float Pool - A Little Bit of Everything. Has 6 years experience. 317 Posts

I have had many demented patients refuse care from African Americans and throw the "n" word around. I can't imagine what it feels like to be a professional and to have someone demean you based on the color of your skin.

KatieMI, BSN, MSN, RN

Specializes in ICU, LTACH, Internal Medicine. Has 9 years experience. 1 Article; 2,672 Posts

Ķ

Is this a homework assignment?

I'll bite. I almost always bite because I love this site and I like to write. I don't have many stories about PT care, though. I'm a nurse, not a PT.

I'm white, overweight and have been a nurse for four decades or so. I also work in an area where the predominate population is Black. (Please don't make me say African American because the majority haven't been near that continent in six or eight generations, and it tends to upset the actual Africans I work with. You know, the nurses from Kenya and Nigeria and so forth.) I wish I had a dollar for every time I've been called some variation of "fat white _itch" or "you fat, ugly white _itch". I've been "fired" from being that patient's nurse more than once, in favor of some nurse that has the proper skin color. And then that nurse (who is often an immigrant from Africa or the Caribbean) is fired for having an improper accent. I remember one shift when we had a patient who fired me for being the wrong skin color, my friend Elijah for being the right skin color but having the wrong accent, Marcus for having the right skin color and accent but the wrong sexual orientation (or so the patient assumed) and Diana -- because as an immigrant from Shanghai she had the wrong everything. I ended up taking care of him for the rest of the day as he'd fired everyone else and I was the most experienced nurse there. It was a hellish shift. I discovered just how many racist names and remarks could slide off my back in a single shift.

"African American" family member, coming to the station:

- (VERY politely): excuse me, please... Can that other nurse start my mom IV? She did it so good that last time.

- (shift leader): sure, which other nurse?

- that fat-bottomed one with that ugly accent.

The family member was totally confused why she couldn't get "that" nurse to even enter the room. She was so polite, after all, she just did not remember the name!