Quote from jillpaige
I just started a nursing student position in a large city hospital downtown. After today I feel very scared. I was told by other nursing students that they had been punched, hit, kicked, spit on, and that it was common. This hospital even has its own police department. I really want to work here for the experience. It is a good teaching hospital, but I am terrified. My grades in nursing school are excellent, but I have always worked in clerical medical jobs prior to this. I am a petite female and not very strong. I also suffer from anxiety. I just don't know how I would even fathom handling this type of situation. What do I do? Quit? Work out and get strong? Take some sort of antidepressant/anxiolytic that would help me not be such a wimp and scaredy cat? Not looking for put-downs..please. Just honest advice. There are many areas of nursing, so people who tell me to get out of the profession, I think that is uncalled for as I believe I have a lot to offer. I'm sure there is a niche for me somewhere, even if I am a big wimp. Thanks.
, you're not too wimpy for this situation - tell yourself that right now.
If students (or any staff, for that matter) have been physically abused, that's a shame. Yes, sometimes patients are not quite in the right frame of mind, are drunk or tripping on their substance of choice. Then you just have the idiots who feel it's their "right" to abuse those who are trying to help them.
Don't be scared because the hospital has its own PD - many facilities have the same thing. Once you start working in a hospital (especially ER), you'll appreciate the folks who might be there to protect you.
Urban hospitals are a different setting than "boutique" hospitals - that's for sure! Take it for what it is - a great opportunity to see people at their worst.
Treat your patients with respect, and expect that your patients will treat you with respect. That may not happen (especially with the folks with altered mental status), but it's nice to dream, right?
After dealing with lots of folks in a mixed ("diverse patient population") EMS setting for nearly 20 years, I can say that I was never hit. Maybe shot at, but never hit!
Treat folks as you yourself would want to be treated, and don't put up with any excrement from anybody who should know better.
Stick with it
- welcome to another view of the "real world." You will certainly see stuff/patients/pathophysiologies at the teaching hospital that you might not encounter at "nicer" specialty facilities.
Hold your head up, and learn what you can every day.