Our Rights vs. Chemicals??? - page 2

I was in the middle of the nurses' station this afternoon when a housekeeping worker came in with one of those big metal containers with a spray nozzle on the end and just started spraying the carpet... Read More

  1. by   catlady
    Quote from subee
    I would question why you even have a rug at all. Rugs themselves are filled with chemicals and certainly become nothing more than cesspools of disease once they're on the floors. And there's the foulness of the stuff used to clean them.
    I've been questioning that since I started working there. It is the nastiest, fugliest, dirtiest looking thing I've ever seen. It's worse than my carpet after my cat throws up on it. I can't even imagine trying to say it's been cleaned. My patients trip on it and their IV poles get caught on it when we try to ambulate. Honestly, though, if we didn't have a carpet, they'd be throwing floor cleaning chemicals on the tile. And that it should be more important than my airway....grrr! The guy stood there watching me gasp for air and didn't care.

    My charge nurse is writing it up.
  2. by   Tweety
    Quote from santhony44
    I'm curious about something. These people in housekeeping who are unresponsive to your needs: are they employed by the facility, or by a contractor? "Back in the day" when I worked in the hospital, our housekeepers were hospital employees too and usually worked really well with us. Their supervisory folks would generally come to the floor and talk with the manager or charge nurse before they started any unusual cleaning or buffing floors. I know lots of places now outsource that kind of service and just wonder if that makes a difference. Hospital employees know they're employed by the facility and the purpose of the facility is to take care of patients; employees of Acme Cleaning Inc. may not see the job the same way. Of course, you can have folks with no judgement or common sense, either way.
    The people who do our floors are employed by the hospital. They stop by the charge nurse desk and say "we're doing the floors" but that's it. They got a job to do and if someone gets a headache or an asthma attack, it's not that they don't care, but they still have to job to do and proceed. What the OP stated was over the top because the guy should have stopped spraying and got her safe and out before proceeding.
  3. by   Marie_LPN, RN
    Quote from RobCPhT
    I believe it's an OSHA reg to have MSDS on all chemicals used in a facility. Also you should be able to ge the OSHA book and file a complaint about chemicals being used. If they don't have one you need to contact OSHA about it. Your health is more important that a rug.
    It is true.
  4. by   unikuelady
    Calling a code would not have been completely out of order. It would have definitly gotten the attention of the higher ups. When we call a code it brings the respiratory therapist, icu nurses, ER doc and the house supervisor. You could have really gotten into some severe respiratory distress and if you truly needed to be removed from the area- the house supervisor would be there to arrange for your patients to be cared for in your absence. If we don't take care of ourselves....no-one else will!
  5. by   Kashia
    Chemicals are killing us. And it isn't just the chemicals in the carpet cleaner. Its also the chemicals that hospital kitchen serves up everyday, the medication given to patients who already suffer....and I could list hundreds more examples.
    Infants are being born with over 600 identifiable chemicals in their little bodies. Smelling them just makes us more aware they are there.
  6. by   catlady
    I have to tell you that last night, right after I went to bed, without warning my airway suddenly closed up almost completely, and I was probably about 15 seconds away from passing out and dying when I started to get some air back. It was about as scary as anything I've ever experienced, and my 16-year-old had to witness it, too. She now has instructions on when to call 911. Over the past several years it has been very, very rare for me to have any symptoms of my disease unless I've been exposed to something. This scared me enough that I think I'm going to contact OSHA myself today.
  7. by   Indy
    Well, if it's a problem that you want to contact OSHA about, do so. In a job I had before nursing, they had painters come in and paint during our business hours. A pregnant lady went home immediately. Most people had a buzz. One of the semi-manager types couldn't remember her name, and she normally had her head on straight. I took a lot of breaks, stayed outside a lot. Someone called OSHA. There was an inspection THAT DAY, and the next there were huge fans blowing air every which way, the doors and windows were open, and there was a notice up on the bulletin board stating that we were to contact OSHA again if we had any further complaints.

    So yeah, OSHA's not a bad way to go. Hospitals really hate it when you do that, because it tends to really work.