But she's not a nurse! - page 6

I just started a new position running a clinic. The clinic is staffed by myself and one CNA. I am so happy to be working with this CNA as she has over 15 years experience working in this clinic and... Read More

  1. by   mattsmom81
    I think her motives are all good personally, and she is very wise to be concerned about her liability in this clinic...

    This CNA has become comfortable with many nursing duties from what I'm reading here, and made things work for many years...to her credit. My Mom was a CNA who was grandfathered in as a LPN back in the 1950's, maybe this CNA does feel she is a nurse in practice...I can understand her feelings...however she is NOT a nurse...

    Now that an RN is there with the NA,...the RN becomes responsible and liable for what the CNA may do....things have now changed big time in that clinic...if it was me, I'd want to know how liable I am, and how to minimize it too.

    The US is a very sue happy place today. My state of Texas has the highest rate of lawsuits against RN's in the country, according to a RNJD I know....and RN's are being sued and prosecuted more frequently all over the US......we would be foolish to not consider that fact, IMHO.
    Last edit by mattsmom81 on Aug 5, '02
  2. by   Flo1216
    She's still not a nurse, and she shouldn't call herself one.
  3. by   RyanRN
    Sounds like a nice place to work, everyone gets along and Judy is well known to all old time patients. Whatever they call Judy probably doesn't hurt at all, as long as the brochure is correct. And I think you did the right thing by changing that. Pointing it out beforehand might put her on the defense and that is not necessary. She should have no complaint as I am sure you have mentioned to her how valued she is. Facts are facts. I'd bet the patients already know her status and will side with Judy should push come to shove. She has known them and befriended them and they will defend her no doubt. Little harm in the small practice you run.

    She should have corrected them long ago when first referred to as Nurse, maybe she did. If she is offended at all encourage her to return to school. Let her know that she deserves it,then help her getting started.

    I was just wondering how the doc would feel if you allowed the patients to call you Doctor Diane, since you do handle losts of medical issues. somehow I don't think he would be so 'understanding'.
  4. by   Flo1216
    I think it just trivializes what nurses actually do. Sadly, the nursing profession is still not often taken seriously. My grandfather thinks that nurses just empty bedpans and give shots. Like I am sure a pharmacy assistant calling themselves a pharmacist would be totally unacceptable but if a nursing assistant wants to call herself a nurse, its no big deal. No one is saying that "Nurse" Judy should be burned at the stake, humilated or disembowled. Just corrected and the brochures changed. It can be done in a profesional manner.
  5. by   SmilingBluEyes
    Ok welp, just call me "Dr. Deb", cause I have delivered my fair share of babies. Why not? Now, what do I want next? Just fork over that delivery fee they get!!!! after that, you can call me any-freaking-thing-you want to......I won't care.
  6. by   Harleyhead
    Since the 911 Attacks I see things a little diffrent. As long as Nurse Judy is doing things right leave it alone. Take a little advice from all of these post and enjoy YOUR life while you can.
  7. by   Flo1216
    So because of 911, we should be able to identify ourselves as nurses, even when we are not? Alrighty then. Not for nothing, I got a front row seat to the horror of 911. Hey, I live 5 minutes from NYC and my boyfriend was in Tower 1 when the first plane hit and I thank God he got out, but I still don't think she should adopt a title that others worked so hard for when she has not earned it. 911 has nothing to do with it. It's just not cool.
  8. by   rebelwaclause
    Originally posted by Mito
    The situation does not sound that serious. I would just a name tag with the RN designation and move on.

    Thumbs-up agree!

    You'd probably be surprised to see how many really know Judy is a CNA/MA, just love her enough to call her a nurse.

  9. by   Q.
    Bottom line, Judy is NOT a nurse. It doesn't matter what the dictionary says, what matter is how we define our profession.

    Judy may be all great and nice, but if we allow people to call themselves "nurses" who are not, that is allowing way too many people to be mislead. I don't care how long you've been there or how long you've been an assistant; bottom line is there is difference between her and I. And if someone walks up to Judy and asks a question and gets a retarded answer or inappropriate one, this patient will walk off with wrong information and assume it came from a nurse, when in fact, it did not.

    I say change the pamphlets for legality and liability reasons, and that was the proper thing to do.

    IF for some reason Judy gives wrong advice with all the best intentions, this patient could come back and sue you because she was under the impression she was speaking to a "Nurse," and she was not.

    We have patients in my clinic who have gotten wacked out advice or just otherwise not always treated professionally by the MAs, and then people assume they were a nurse and it just downright doesn't reflect good on our profession. As a RN in the nursing profession, I only want NURSES representing us to the public, no one else.
  10. by   purplemania
    In Texas the Board of Nurse Examiners sends out a newsletter to RN's with all kinds of info, including PICTURES and a short bio of people charged with posing as a nurse. It is against the law. If your BNE has such a newsletter or something similar perhaps you could show it to Judy and explain you are concerned that she is at risk legally, etc. Suggest a proper name tag or name sign at her work area. How about a banner featuring her picture to place in the reception area with a bio and how impt. she is to the staff as a nurse's assistant and years of service, etc.? Good luck.
    originally posted by micro
    *nurse judy*.............diane, registered nurse

    pays her the honour and respect she deserves for the time in and love and loyalty of the doc and patients.......
    shows that you understand it.....

    but also with difference in your designations.........pays you the respect and 'liability' that comes from being the supervisor and the professional rn.........
    just by adding rn/bsn after your name in the brochure will definitely inform folks of your title & responsibilities...but beware, some people (patients, other office staff including docs) might see it as you wanting to flex your muscle in order to make you look "better" than or "resent" nurse judy.

    question for you though...when you introduce yourself, do you state that you're the rn, or do you state that you're the nurse??? the reason that i'm even asking is that within the titles: cna/lpn/rn, the operative word is nurse...i do realize that cnas don't have the same education as lpns/rns nor do they hold licenses but they're certified to perform their basic "nursing" assistive duties...hence having to go through the basic education & hands on clinical hours in order to qualify, sit, & pass their certification exams. i know of many lpns/rns say that they're the "nurse" when they're introducing themselves to their patients without districting whether or not they're a practical or registered nurse.

    now because the word nurse is within the title of cna, nurse judy & other probably don't see where there's a problem or maybe they just don't understand the difference...especially in a clinical or physician office setting where mas, cnas, uaps, & pcts perform basic nursing duties that the lpns/rns do except for maybe starting ivs & blood transfusing(which i don't see in a clinical/doctors' office setting anyways). perhaps because they do a lot more than what they would be allowed to do in hospital facilities because they're working under the direct supervision of the doctors & therefore work under their licenses...besides, like someone else said...they probably feel honored to be called a nurse, even though they know that they're not. i'm not saying that i agree with that...i just think that it would be too embarrassing to make any correction to patients at this point. i blame the doctors for allowing this to go on sooo long...but the damage is done...there really isn't anything you can do about it without looking like a ****. i wouldn't make any waves about having nurse judy's title change at this point. what i would suggest is to keep-on learning the ropes of that office from her & get your feet wet & firmly planted there....show them what you know & are made of...not want your title is. and if it still bothers you about her being called nurse judy, just ask the doctors to have name tags made with everyone's name & title...tell them that it would enhance the office & make everyone look more professional with their name tags & "official titles" on them....besides...the doctors aren't going to spend anymore money than what they have to in order to make corrections to their current brochure. just suggest whenever new ones are needed for printing that you want rn/bsn put behind your name & leave nurse judy alone. this way, it wouldn't appear that you don't like the fact that nurse judy has that title...otherwise, you'd might come off as resentful...i'm sure you'd wouldn't want that.

    if you contact your sbon to find-out if nurse judy is illegally misrepresenting herself, please be very careful about disclosing any information about judy & your place of employment. just ask the question in a anonymously & depending on their answer, either have them inform your employers without disclosing who notified them (sbon) in the first place if the outcome is negative or tell them it's o.k. for them to tell the doctors because you wanted to know because of your license (whether judy is working directly under yourself or the doctors). if your not careful, you'd might come-off as being disloyal & you've just started there with a long ways to go....trust me, if you're seen as being resentful or disloyal to nurse judy, the doctors, let alone the patients & other staff, won't take too kindly to that & get rid of you instead. just be careful...be very, very careful. is your ego worth all this??? think it through!!!
  12. by   NRSKarenRN
    SKM-NURSIEPOOH....you said exactly what I was trying to get across. Great reply.
  13. by   bblou
    [QUOTE]Originally posted by mark_LD_RN
    [B]...the MA's and CNA's should be just as responsible.

    ... the doctors are just as much to blame they hire people and dress them as nurses and mislead the public into thinking they are.

    I agree with Mark and the others who rightly believe that false representation should not be allowed. To be called by a title out of affection or respect is fine as long as the person being called by that title clarifies his/her capacity and does not overstep his/her boundaries.
    I worked with a secretary who allowed patients to think of her as a nurse, but did things she was not qualified to do and made mistakes that could have had dire consequences. At the time, I was more afraid of patient harm than I was of the effect it might have on my license.
    I also worked with a medical assistant whom patients thought was a physician's assistant. She's very good at her job and is well-liked by all. But, when patients would call and ask for the physician's assistant, I (not knowing at first that this assumption was permitted) would correct them. Even after I caught on that assumptions like this were allowed in that office, I continued to inform patients of correct titles and responsibilities. The staff did not like this and tried to set me up to get fired.
    Ah, well, live and learn, huh?