Free RN labor to implement medical device research?


Nurses on my unit are being asked (told?) to participate in a study of a medical device manufactured by a for- profit corporation. Non invasive medical device will be applied to our patients. The company reps are being compensated to be on hand to "in service" us. The study physician will get some type of authorship credit I suppose. And the staff nurses doing the grunt work? What do you think? Just part of the job? I don't like my labor on behalf of a for-profit company who is not my employer to be taken for granted.

Specializes in NICU, ICU, PICU, Academia. Has 46 years experience.

There are no not-for-profit medical device manufacturers.


71 Posts

Fair enough. But whose employment am I in when I am doing this work? Am I working for them for free? Is my hospital asking me to perform work for another corporation in addition to my regular responsibilities?

Specializes in NICU, ICU, PICU, Academia. Has 46 years experience.

How much is involved? If it's trying out a new device - how is this different from the hospital buying a new piece of equipment and training you on it?

I don't understand why this is such a big deal.

Specializes in NICU, ICU, PICU, Academia. Has 46 years experience.

Also, your job description likely contains the phrase "other duties as assigned". This is one of them.

MunoRN, RN

8,058 Posts

Specializes in Critical Care. Has 10 years experience.

Research is quite common in the hospital setting, if you feel you should be paid extra because an outside company is benefitting from your work, then wouldn't that also apply to giving medications, utilizing linen, giving your patient's food, using IV tubing, etc, all of which are things outside companies make money on because nurses are using them?


14,633 Posts

Are you being asked to put in extra time, above and beyond your usual working hours, for no pay?? If what you are talking about is doing something different than usual in the course of your usual work day, I don't see what the issue is. As already noted, lots of research occurs in acute medical settings, and every nursing job description I've ever seen includes, usually at the very end, the magic words, "... and other duties as assigned." This would be one of those "other duties" referred to in your job description. If you have some moral/ethical objection to the specific device or procedure you're being asked to use, that might be a legitimate concern.


359 Posts

As long as you're being offered and compensated for the training, it sounds like a part of your job as a staff nurse. Depending on the stage of the approval process, the manufacturer might not even be making money off this device yet. Once they device is approved, should they owe you a cut of profits? What about the devices you already use? What about medications you give? Lots of people are making money off your labor and but you are be compensated for that labor. Research is necessary to move innovation in healthcare forward and, in a capitalist system, people have and will continue to figure out how to make money off of it.