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Dr's orders, will I ever learn to read their handwriting?!

Nurses   (3,932 Views 22 Comments)
by myty23 myty23 (New Member) New Member

3,276 Profile Views; 101 Posts

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You are reading page 2 of Dr's orders, will I ever learn to read their handwriting?!. If you want to start from the beginning Go to First Page.

UpinawayRN has 17 years experience and specializes in ICU,ED, Corrections, dodging med-surg.

98 Posts; 4,473 Profile Views

It really shouldn't be tolerated. Com'on..your smart enough to go to med school. Write orders that are legible. Nurses don't have time to play Sherlock Holmes! And..WHO"S gonna get in trouble if a mistake was made?..yup... It is just disrespectful. Not everyone has been there 20 yrs to know your every slant!

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CloudySue has 6 years experience and specializes in Pediatric Private Duty; Camp Nursing.

710 Posts; 14,885 Profile Views

I think I heard that med schools are addressing this issue and requiring them to practice writing legibly. Maybe that was the block letters someone mentioned earlier. In teachers' college, I had to learn how to write in perfect Zaner-Bloser form (think: the alphabet that goes across the front of the room above the chalkboard, that's what the font is called) and one of our finals included a page of the entire alphabet written on kid-size lined paper. We also had to demonstrate neatness on the board. That perfect "kindergarten teacher" lettering you see teachers do doesn't happen by accident!

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246 Posts; 7,040 Profile Views

I almost fell over the other day when I was going through a patients chart and saw the most perfect handwriting I've ever seen from a doctor. It looked like it was something out of a teenaged girls diary. Not flowery and filled with hearts dotting the i's but very neat, well spaced script.

I chalked it up to her getting too much sleep and not enough stress.

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WildcatFanRN is a BSN, RN and specializes in Cardiac-Telemetry.

3 Articles; 904 Posts; 25,780 Profile Views

One hospital I worked in in AZ had two doctors that neatly printed their orders, sometimes two pages worth if they were admission orders. One doc was a surgeon the other wasn't. I asked the latter about it once and he said "printing my orders legibly keeps you from having to call me at 3AM for clarification".

On another note, the surgeon who also printed her orders, we LOVED her. Would even put pt's on the bedpan if she was passing by a room and the pt called out, then would let us know "so and so is on the bedpan" Definately not to many of those kind of docs around.

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78 Posts; 2,217 Profile Views

I can't believe this is something we as nurses still have to contend with. I agree with other posters who say it is disrespectful and who can't believe JCAHO still allows this. There really is no reason computerized orders shouldn't be the standard - other than the push back from doctors. Patient safety? Meh...

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Up2nogood RN is a RN and specializes in pulm/cardiology pcu, surgical onc.

860 Posts; 10,971 Profile Views

Since CPOE is standard at my hospital all I need to do is decipher progress notes. I'm hoping with our move to Epic that physician progress notes will be computerized too?

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686 Posts; 9,984 Profile Views

A Nursing Educator once told us that legally, as RNs, we are not supposed to “interpret” an order. What we should do is “carry out” the order. Thus, if an order is not clearly written, we should contact the Doctor and clarify. And yes, I’ve done that numerous times. The Dr. might be upset-----but it’s your job and your license on the line. I am not guessing if the dosage is 1.0 mg or 10 mg-----I am definitely calling him up! And not because all patients got 10 mg ,it would mean that patient z should get 10 mg too!

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emtb2rn has 21 years experience as a BSN, RN, EMT-B and specializes in Emergency.

2,599 Posts; 28,627 Profile Views

Not silly at all. My hospital has just addressed this issue. Effective 2/1, all md orders (except emergency or telephone) must be put into the computer system by the doc.

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mskate has 8 years experience and specializes in Burn, CCU, CTICU, Trauma, SICU, MICU.

280 Posts; 5,949 Profile Views

If I am working in places that have paper order's, I call the docs - a lot. If I can't easily read your writing, I will ask 1 other person. If they can't, you are getting a phone call and I don't particularly care if what time of the night it is. Maybe they will learn that if they want orders carried out, the need to write like an adult.

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PMFB-RN has 16 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in burn ICU, SICU, ER, Traum Rapid Response.

5,143 Posts; 68,995 Profile Views

I can't believe this is something we as nurses still have to contend with. I agree with other posters who say it is disrespectful and who can't believe JCAHO still allows this. There really is no reason computerized orders shouldn't be the standard - other than the push back from doctors. Patient safety? Meh...

*** Or push back from nurses. After many years of reading and taking hand written orders we now have physician computer order entry. This doesn't allow me to write the orders the way I want them to read, the way they should read. I hate it as our resident don't really have any idea how to properly write many of the orders and I have to call them to get them to change them. One example is PICC line orders. I have resident writing for me to place them in a particular arm or vein, or writing the number of lumen I should place. Sure I can an do educate them but just as soon as I get one set of resident straightened out we get another group of them. Another example is that our resident seldom worite for PRN ABGs when they write vent orders and I have to call them and get them to add the PRN ABG order. In my experience physician order entry has only increased the number of calls to physicians for clairification.

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