Nursing as a customer service profession? - page 7

I am graduating from nursing school in the next few months, and I am just beginning my job search. I have discovered that many hospitals have something about nursing as a customer service profession... Read More

  1. by   LoisJean
    The kind of 'customer service' insisted upon by corporate hospitals is geared to do nothing more than make that business look good to the average consumer who partakes of their services. The nurse, (and every other employee), becomes no more or less than an 'agent' for that enterprise. May I ask: are you compensated an extra amount in your paychecks for acting as 'customer service representatives'? No, I didn't think so.

    You know, this really saddens me a great deal. It's truly a low rung that health care facilities stand on when they use their personnel-and, pardon me, their NURSING personnel especially, as the washrag to keep their faces looking clean. Makes me sick, actually.

    I'm grateful that I'm not in that scene anymore.

    Lois Jean
  2. by   VickyRN
    I repeat... they are PATIENTS, NOT CUSTOMERS!!! They will always be patients and WILL NEVER be customers!!! I truly dislike using that silly, condescending term.
    Last edit by VickyRN on May 8, '03
  3. by   healingtouchRN
    I dislike the word "patient". I prefer client, which denotes someone who has input & a choice about what is happening to them, who has alternatives.
  4. by   fairyprincess2003
    as a new grad(tomorrow I wanted to give my opinion as to why I feel people are not going into nursing, and why many new grads want to get out of it asap.
    After four years of school and the amount of knowledge nurses have, they/we are taken for granted. It seems like everyone is the hospitals talk down to nurses, and act as if they are superior. Even those with far less education and knowledge.
    I think it's funny when resp therapists, Physical therapy, CNA's, etc act like the nurses are beneath them. Like the nurse is supposed to do it all. For instance, a resp therapist was in a patient's room and the patient wanted their tray moved to another location. What does the resp therapist do? Calls for the nurse to come and move the tray. Or what about being called 10 times by a family who wants ice chips for their family member, or water. Why can't they get it themselves? It is discouraging to know that I studied 20 hours or more a week to be a waitress. I am all for being nice, and sweet. I am a very compassionate person. But nursing as a profession will never improve if we have to just suck it up, or tell other nurses that we have to just do it all. No, we should not. Hospitals need to hire more CNA's, hospitality, etc. I am excited about starting my new job in a few weeks, but am most likely applying to medical school next year.
  5. by   mattsmom81
    NoelJan, congrats and good luck. I remember feeling much the same as you immediately on graduation. Back then the wealthy patients and jackass docs were the main culprits making nurses feel like servants. Now the general population has joined up.

    It has gotten much much worse today in a culture based on instant gratification and 'the customer is always right'.

    We are told we are professionals in school...and must be highly educated with top be treated like servants. This is indeed one of the prime reasons for our shortage. Good insight from a brand new grad!
  6. by   EricTAMUCC-BSN
    My thoughts are if you can't make people happy you should go into vet medicine. We are working with people here. Isn't it nice when you are seeking directions and someone takes the time out to show you the way instead of leaving you lost and confused? However, I agree that there are numerous times where it is impossible to help out. That's when tactfulness and prayer comes into play.
  7. by   VivaLasViejas
    Some days, I think the only difference between me and the average food server is about $20 an hour. However, it takes no more time to be nice to people than it does to be rude, and I always try to go the extra mile because it makes ME feel good, along with the patients and/or their families. I get nasty notes from administration when I forget to initial some piece of documentation, but I've never had a single pt. complaint about my care. That's how I know I'm doing a good job.
  8. by   mattsmom81
    Customer satisfaction is a concept hospital administrators relate to.

    I am thinking outloud here... if we can link customer satisfaction to nursing satisfaction, perhaps administrators will take us more seriously and see a real benefit to keeping their nurses happy.

    One major complaint we always get on surveys is the patient has to wait too long...for meds and treatments, discharge teaching, etc...NURSE stuff. Well, higher nurse patient ratio would remedy this common complaint....

    How about it , research nurses among us? What studies have been done to correllate these things, any we can share with administrators? Any chance we can convince TPTB to do MORE studies on this?? Any suggestions on how we can accomplish this?
  9. by   healingtouchRN
    I think you are right on target! I haven't thought about nurse satisfaction being related to patient satisfaction. If we as nurse are not stretched to the limit by unreal demands placed upon us, then when we have adequate staff (including ancillary) to do the job, extra checks to catch the LOL climbing out of bed, before she hits the floor! I think that is what directly relates to patient (aka customer satisfaction). Ya know down the line somewhere, we will be customers, if not already have been as the case with two of my employees this month. One was very dissatisfied with her care at her own institution. Nuff sed!
  10. by   EmeraldNYL
    Mattsmom, that is definitely a great idea. Who can we make a research proposal to?? Let's do it!
  11. by   VickyRN
    Great idea!!!
  12. by   Tweety
    Our hospital is of the mindset that all patients, staff, and md's are customers. Barf...

    I treat everyone the same. I do think when possible bonding with the "customers" "clients" or "patients" whomever is an excellent idea. They are less apt to sue, complain, or give you grief if they like you. Plain and simple. They'll forgive you anything, being late with pain medicine, making errors, not bathing granny if you can somehow give them that personality that they can't help but like. But good nursing skill is what's important.

    Great thread.
  13. by   SmilingBluEyes
    I think mattsmom is onto something, also. I am willing to help!