Hey, Managers! What's up with the "weeding out" of good nurses? - page 14

Recently there's been a spate of write-ups I've heard about that are basically bogus. Minor infractions that no one else would get written up over. I'm furious. On the surface, it doesn't seem to... Read More

  1. by   twotrees2
    Quote from Jolie
    They weren't "disciplined" for using their insurance benefits. One was dismissed on the final day of his probationary period with no explanation offered, and one was denied a higher position that had previously been approved. (That employee was even in the process of moving his family to a new city at the employer's request, to accomodate the new job!) Coincidentally, these events coincided with family members receiving serious medical diagnoses which were likely to result in significant insurance expenses. This particular employer self-insures for healthcare, so company officials have access to information regarding insurance utilization. The idea of HIPAA in this situation is a joke!

    The first employee was let go "just in time", on the last day of his probationary period, when the employer was not obligated to explain their action. Had his wife been diagnosed a week or two later, the company would have had to find some "explanation" for his dismissal. How fortunate for the company!

    The second employee had worked there long term, and couldn't be dismissed without cause, but no such protection exists where promotions are concerned. The employer made his life miserable, interrupting a transfer, and leaving him in the less desirable job, no doubt in the hopes that he would get fed up and quit. Didn't happen. His wife recovered. The irony of the situation is that she is experienced in case management, and was able to manage her own care in an incredibly efficient manner, probably saving the company a boatload of money in insurance costs.
    it happens frequently and no way to prove it - when i needed a Lot of medical care ( which we got significant discounts AFTER the ins paid meaning we paid nothing literally - ) they had significant expenses with me - after my FMLA ran out they took t to set me on the day shift ( normally worked 7 p - 7 a ) and wrote me up fr many things that i wasn't even responsible for, at least not alone - ( like an ob patient refused bed pan i couldn't find fundus - went to the nurse who was caring for her ( i was just helping that day answer lights) who said well we cant stop her let he go and she passed out on the toilet - well instead of BOTH of us being written up the one i asked to come talk to her cause she wouldnt listen to me and insisted on getting up) they just wrote me up as the sole person who was responsible - and other things that weren't my fault but i got the blame and ended up firing me due to multiple errors ( mind you id not been written up the whole 4 yrs prior!!!)
  2. by   twotrees2
    Quote from workingforskies
    I hate to say this, but I wonder, would this be anywhere near the issue it is now if our profession was a male dominated profession? Look at it simply froma supply and demand standpoint. With this shortage, WE should be calling the shots. But we don't. We collectively get walked on almost at will. It makes me sad when I think about it from this perspective.

    Getting back to the topic, I notice that not one person in management who has been preassured from above to clear out the old nurses has had the guts to say something in defence of this practice. I guess silence is the ultimate refuge of the soulless coward.

    I always had a different, shoot off my mouth attitude. When our "dear friend" made the leap to management and within 3 months, was licking her former best friends blood off the knife she just stuck in her back, I wanted to slash her tires, stab her in the eye, let her know what a Judas she was. My co-workers would all nod in agreement yet fearfully smile to her face.
    they are not going to admit it - even in the guise of no one knowing them over the net. they are one mindset and that's money - and yeah know the feeling - try a nurse who went from LPN to bsn - passed boards and was DON by 1 mo after boards- she sticking it to us as we speak and its sickening - we all feel set up cause just a few months ago she would get us talking and we trusted her with our feelings ( as we vent here we vent with coworkers) she would say same as us but now she has been slowly pushing the big mouths out - only reason i am even still there is they have yet o find another RN to replace me - i am only number 2 of 2 on pm shift - and i am only part time with one full time RN - they have no choice but as soon as they fill me they will kill me i am sure. they have thier hand on the guillotine rope as we speak and wish they could just yank t now. can see it in thier eyes and hear in thier voice when they talk. sad.
  3. by   brendamyheart
    Quote from Gamma
    I find this topic rather interesting as it seems this is an international problem. What I have observed is that these so called managers are frequently in the "over 50" age bracket themselves with control issues. They have been in their positions for some time, have not kept their knowledge base current and could not even begin to do all that is required of a staff nurse today. They feel their positions are threatened by someone who can rise to the task at hand and therefore must get rid of them. Since most places are protected by unions they cannot just fire them so they make it as unappealing as possible to work there. They will often set staff against each other as well to discourage a united supportive group who might expose them for what they really are. After getting rid of good nurses they proceed to hire nurses who come from areas where subservience is the rule, and wages were the pitts. Those people will never question the antics of those narcicistic managers, and if they did they are not about to confront them about them. That secures the control managers feel is slipping away from them.
    I am 54, nurse manager. If I want to keep my job, I need to be on top of my skills. I would be useless if I did not. My company does all it can to retain seasoned nurses. I thank god for that. I could not do my job without them!
  4. by   sayitgirl
    Quote from ingelein
    I came across this thread and was blown away to actually hear such an in depth discussion about what I have been seeing for the 27 years Ive been a nurse.I think this topic is worthy of bringing back into discussion inlight of some of the comments that have been bandied about by a few managers regarding their "sloppy, stupid, slacker" nurses.I think there is alot of reasons nurses could get justifyably fired ,but Ive seen too much of management taking a dislike to a strong nurse, who may be an excellent nurse, and getting rid of her while keeping the true slackers because they are "team players".
    This is nothing more than workplace violence in the raw. And you know what there is no law against it...yet. New Jersey is proposing a workplace violence act
    C:\Documents and Settings\HP_Administrator\Desktop\workplace violence act.htm
    it is the 10th state to do so, hopefully it will be the first to actually pass the law. I do not think that this type of harassment will stop until there is a law against it. Otherwise, racial and sexual harasssment would not be punishable by law. People need to know that there can be consequences for their behavior, otherwise the sky is the limit with them.
  5. by   Simplepleasures
    [quote=ortess1971;1939308]The reason why sometimes good nurses get targeted is because, despite what the PTB would have you believe, managers are NOT infallible and some of them are meanspirited dimwits. That simple. Others start out with good intentions and get corrupted. There are circumstances where accusations are made up-and I have seen some people get reprimanded for something but if the boss's pet does it, no problem. This is why the "newer" generation of nurses has zero loyalty to a particular hospital or facility. Why work your butt off for these jerks when you get nothing in return? We pay attention, trust me. I've seen the damage a poor manager can do to morale and to someone's career. Some of these people are evil, plain and simple. I wouldn't quit though-I say, claim unemployment and make them pay(I was told in most states, your workplace has to pay a portion of your unemployment benefits...) In my facility, they try to make you sign a "resignation" letter.

    I would add to this by saying that managers, DONs, ADONs ,etc.try very hard to hang on to thier jobs and may end up corrupted because if they did not do the "dirty work" of the corporation they would be out on the street pretty fast. OR they might find themselves back on the floor with the rest of us peons.Also, if you are forced out or retaliated against for reporting to the state or even in house about patient issues , you can SUE them, there are several states that have Retaliation Protection Laws now.Nurses ARE becoming empowered, very slowly to be sure, but I think this is becoming a trend.Every year since our state passed this law there have been more nurses using the protection it gives, see the Wisconsin LIRC website .
    Last edit by Simplepleasures on Nov 25, '06
  6. by   Simplepleasures
    Quote from sayitgirl
    This is nothing more than workplace violence in the raw. And you know what there is no law against it...yet. New Jersey is proposing a workplace violence act
    C:\Documents and Settings\HP_Administrator\Desktop\workplace violence act.htm
    it is the 10th state to do so, hopefully it will be the first to actually pass the law. I do not think that this type of harassment will stop until there is a law against it. Otherwise, racial and sexual harasssment would not be punishable by law. People need to know that there can be consequences for their behavior, otherwise the sky is the limit with them.
    Actually it does seem violent, but really cant be classified that way. It IS retaliatory and there ARE laws out there that do cover some types of retaliation, BUT they dont cover just plain mean ,hateful ,vicious retaliation unless it has to do with reporting patient care issues.This is where a STRONG union would come into play.Has anyone ever had to walk into a "disciplinary" meeting(or should I say kangaroo court?)with 4 of them and only one of you? If you do have a union and your union stewart is not doing the job, call the union and if they do nothing, there are ways to get rid of a bad ineffectual union. See the California Nurses Association website, they are trying to get a NATION WIDE UNION for nurses!! Its about time, dontcha think?
  7. by   sayitgirl
    No I do not think that is the solution, unions can be impartial too. This is all about behavior modification. There needs to be laws in place to protect employees against over zealous managers.
  8. by   Simplepleasures
    I agree there "outa be a law", but in order for a senator or congressman to even entertain a discussion about such a law, it has to have a legal leg to stand on. YES, I do agree that what has been happening out there is unfair, dirty, etc. etc. but in "at will" states the only way you get protection is if you were fired in retaliation for reporting a pt. care issue.This then puts you in a "protected class", equal to being discriminated against if were related to race, religion age, FLMA, ADA,etc.You could always sue for wrongful discharge, but again wont win unless you can site a public policy type violation, or Qui Tam violation(which deals with reporting Medicare/Medicaid Fraud).This is why I continue to hang so many of my hopes on a STRONG union.Unions should not be there to be impartial, they are there to see to it that the employee is given protection under the NLRA . I wish that we nurses could trust unions again, its sad to see so many nurses that have not had good enough union representation.Hey all you unions out there , how about giving us some hard evidence that your union is different and will come through for the nurses?!!
  9. by   NRSKarenRN
    wisdom at work: the importance of the older and experienced nurse in the workplace
    this paper is a response to the current and increasingly daunting crisis resulting from the shortage of nurses. this paper focuses on one approach--the retention of the older nurse to the usual retirement age and even beyond.

    [banana]the study estimates that approximately 40 percent of nurses in the nation will be more than 50 years old by the year 2010.

    hard to axe 40%.
  10. by   brendamyheart
    Quote from sayitgirl
    No I do not think that is the solution, unions can be impartial too. This is all about behavior modification. There needs to be laws in place to protect employees against over zealous managers.
    Very good point!!!!!
  11. by   CardioTrans
    Unfortunately I have seen this just recently in one of the units in my hospital. A nurse was "suspended" for 3 days by the nurse manager for the point system re attendance and tardies. Then the manager called the nurse back and said that she would have to be suspended until the new schedule came out (2 wks). At the end of 2 wks, when the nurse called to get her schedule for the next week... the manager told her that the "budget had been cut and there was no position for her". However, the manager had been hiring nurses like crazy. Also, the point system.... the nurse had not missed a day since last April. Now she did have some tardies, but was always there. The patients, MDs and other staff loved her. She was a good nurse. Never had a complaint or write up. There were some other nurses on that same unit that had more points than she did, and they are still working there. One of which has had numerous complaints against her from MDs. Whats wrong with that picture?

    It is a sad time in nursing when the good ones are being gotten rid of and the ones who arent are kept.
  12. by   Simplepleasures
    Yup, somethings rotton in the state of Denmark, oops I mean the USA.:trout:
  13. by   43RN20
    How can things go from being the "best" to being the "worst".
    My experience with "weeding out good nurses" occured about 10 yrs ago in a small community hosp.
    In our hosp. I was the first RN to be hired for a 24/40 weekend position. Soon the entire weekend staff positions became 24/40. For four years in a row, this crew worked all of the Christmas & New Year's holidays. This made the rest of the nursing staff particularly happy. There were 2 LPNs & 3 RNs covering M/S, OB, ICU, & ER night shifts. There was never any absenteeism. It was a
    popular & successful program. The same people were always scheduled together & became better & more efficient than a well oiled machine. In my position as Night Supervisor I was able to have our LPNs trained & certified in IV therapy. This was a great asset when our ER would be especially busy or we needed to float someone to help in another busy unit. They were cross-trained to all depts. & had run simultaneous code blues in 2 depts. @ the same time which proved their high level of skills. There were other things that I was able to do that were useful to the hosp. ie as the ER EMS Coordinator, I was able to work with the state EMS Services & the 7 area ambulance services that served our hosp. to teach & certify their basic EMTs as EMT Es.
    Then, along came a new Nursing Supervisor.
    There immediately followed a systematic regular series of "Incident Reports" aimed directly at my co-workers. At the time we didn't understand why this was being done. But these reports were so blatantly a form of harrassment, that we formed a plan of self protection.
    1. Every report would be responded to in writing & we would keep copies of everything.
    2. We would never go into a meeting without a co-worker as a witness.
    3. We organized a Nurse Support Group that met regularly outside of the hosp. This was purely to bolster the staff & it was clearly stated that this group would not be involved in unionizing discussions or activities. This was not kept a secret & anyone who wished to attend was welcome. Actually, a Nurse Mgr. attended a mtg. to see what we were doing & we explained the situation to her.
    It became very suspicious when we found that similar "Incident Reports" were happening to employees in Medical Records & in the Office.
    The employees who wished arbitration were given the Assist. Admin. as their Arbitor. The Admin. heard their cases & listened to their Arbitor who, in fact, ripped them to shreds.
    Within 6 months, about 5 office staff were out of a job all on the same day. They were allowed to come to work in the morning. They were greeted by their office mgr. & told that they no longer had jobs @ the hosp., that they should remove all of their personal items from their desks, that they would be observed the whole time to be sure that they didn't steal anything & that they would be escourted out of the building.
    The Administrator was observed leaving the building before 8 AM that day & didn't return until the next day.
    The Nurse Mgrs. called a mandatory staff mtg for 1 PM to announce that budget cuts made it necessary to eliminate all of the 24/40 positions. They would allow the 24/40 employees to apply for part time work with no guaranteed # of hrs. & with no benefits.
    To my surprise, not one voice was raised in opposition to these announcements. I immediately announced my outrage at the insensitivity of the management for the way these announcements were handled & told the mgrs. that they had my resignation immediately.
    Significantly, there were only 4 other nurses who even bothered to speak to me after I left. They were too fearful of loosing their jobs. Over the next 2 yrs. , there was a turnover of more than 20 nurses & the Nursing Supervisor was fired.
    What has been said in many replies on this topic proved to be true. If the management wants an employee gone, they will be gone.
    The nursing position that I had held in this hosp. was the most enjoyable position that I ever hoped to have. It was a delight & a joy to be able to do the work I had always dreamed of doing. It was the way nursing ought to be until the budget became the ruling principle on which the hosp. ran.
    It still is run with the budget first in mind.
    I remember a day when the hosp. Admin. had given his "state of the state" message to the entire staff. His message was about how the hosp. was like a long train. He was the engineer. He made the decisions. If anyone didn't agree or didn't like all of the decisions, they should get off the train.
    After the mtg, I spoke to him & to the Assist. Admin. @ the same time & asked him if he realized what he had just said. I told him it was too bad that he had just told his whole medical/nursing team who were highly skilled & knowledgable; which knowledge he was paying a good price for; that he didn't want to hear anything that they had to say. His response came the day he left town & had his mgrs. do his dirty work.
    No, I didn't quit nursing. I am more determined than ever to work within the profession to make it more supportive. Sharing your stories is a help.