Responsibility for other nurses? - page 2

Do you think charge nurses should be held responsible for other nurse's actions? I just can't find that rule for practice written anywhere. I often hear charge nurses say," I could lose my license... Read More

  1. by   P_RN
    I went to the grievance committee once with this situation. We had a great problem with call-ins and no-shows a while back. Consequently there was many a day with only marginal coverage.

    One Sunday I was left with a new graduate RN, a new grad LPN, neither preceptor had come in, a mental health RN who had not worked in a hospital for over 20 years and had just been hired in order to get some "acute skills."...and ME. There was one tech..(CNA) who was wonderful. There were 32 patients on the unit.

    The NM was called and she said.."it is a weekend and I am NOT coming in. You are the charge nurse, you are responsible handle it."

    Charge was NOT an official position. Some units had one, some didn't. This was solely HER "management" style. There were no supervisors, but there was an assistant director who came right away, and was appalled at our staffing.

    While I was on the phone, the older nurse came to me and said she had gotten the "suction thing" stuck in a patients trach. She had used a Yankaur! Fortunately no harm was done, but to think *I* was responsible for such "malpractice"????

    I got one the phone and called the Administrator on call. It turned out to be one of the Vice Pres. of the hospital. SHE came in. Within a half hour the floor was adequately staffed. The next week the NM "resigned." I did call the BON and was told it was decided on an individual case by case basis. In 20-20 hindsight I wish I'd asked for an official opinion.
  2. by   kaycee
    I have been the steady charge on 3-11 in the ER for about 10yrs now. I am resposible for making assignments, keeping the ER organized and flowing smoothly. I will be the one to handle any problems that might arise, and if I can't resolve them then I hand it over to the nursing supervisor in house. I am not responsible for mistakes made by other RNs, unless it is something that was brought to my attention and I did not act on it. If I believe an RN that is working with me is not competent in his/her position then I report it to my manager. If she fails to resolve the problem and mistakes continue to be made it's her problem along with the nurse who is making mistakes. The patients come first and I will always try to protect them from an incompetent nurse or doctor. But the mistakes they might make are their responsiblity not mine.
  3. by   lever5
    Thank-you all for your comments, they present a lot of food for thought.