Scared to make a mistake or worse yet lose my licence in LTC?

  1. I finished my orientation at a fairly new LTC facility. The orientation consisted of 2 nights and 3 day shifts. Most of the orientators were great but others...
    I feel that I'm fairly a quick learner and enjoy a new challenege, I'm just not ready to get my head cut off, get in serious trouble or lose my licence.

    I've heard horror stories about "just cover your butt" ... do this do that. careful careful careful. It's like walking on egg shells and as a new nurse and new to LTC what if we DO make a mistake? then what my nursing career is over?!

    Another issue... I've accepted a permanent full-time position in a fantastic hospital (only 10 mins from my house lol). The orientation for that starts mid March

    I'm casual at this LTC facility and the receptionist just called me with a BUNCH of shifts. Sure I said yes to them all... I'm willing to work hard and make $... I'm just scared... I don't want something to happen that might jeopardize my hospital position

    Nonetheless I'm thankful for the opportunity to even have so many shifts just very nervous.

    Any thoughts?
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    About Newgrad_STAT

    Joined: Nov '11; Posts: 60; Likes: 42
    from CA


  3. by   leslie :-D
    always keep pt safety as your 1st priority.
    this goes for anything you don't want to cause any harm.

    and, you must always write meticulous, thorough nursing notes that reflect your assessment and interventions.
    if you didn't write it, you didn't do it.

    good luck, lots of good times ahead.

  4. by   nurseprnRN
    newgrad_stat, i love all nurses, i really do. i do wish there were some way to use its power to reach all the new grads and others here who constantly beat the "losing your license" drum, day in and day out.

    i think it's like parents who keep their kids inside or under constant watch because they are terrified that their children are in constant danger of kidnap or other mayhem, when statistics actually reveal that there are fewer such incidents than when the parents were children and running free from the end of school til dinnertime.

    or it's like when new grads think that the failure rate of nclex must be somewhere between half and two thirds of all takers, when in reality it's way south of 15% and less than 5% in many schools.

    or that people think that mile per mile, airplane travel is the most dangerous way to travel, when more than thirty thousand us citizens die in automobile accidents every year. what do you think it would be like if we lost enough airplanes to kill that many people, hmm?

    so, this long digression into relative risk and abuse of fearmongering. here we have a perfectly good new grad, who has a job and has actually been offered another, and she is so insecure about her abilities that she is scared to make a mistake and by extension, to lose her license. (op, i'm not picking on you in particular, so don't take this personally in that way. you are so not alone in this boat. i'm speaking to all of them.)

    look around at the people in the facilities where you work. in the immortal words of pope john xxiii, "sunt angeli?" "are they angels?" he was looking at blueprints for a new building for the vatican, and noticed there were no bathrooms; a little latin joke he made here. what he was saying was that real people would be using this building and somebody forgot to take that into account. :d in other words, real humans have human characteristics, and we have to acknowledge that and work with it. in nursing, that means that we all make mistakes.

    so. do you see dozens of people being escorted out of the building willy-nilly on a regular basis? does anybody you know have first-hand knowledge of somebody who did make a mistake at work being fired and having a license revocation? sure, sometimes it happens, but how often?

    reality check here: i get the state nursing association newsletter for my state, and they do, in fact, publish names of people whose licenses have been suspended, restricted, or revoked. there are usually about twenty or so per year. in the whole state. and what for? for felony child abuse, opioid diversion, practicing under the influence of drugs or alcohol, felony theft of patient belongings or hospital equipment, fraud, and the like. the same kinds of errors that all of us have made don't begin rise to that level of danger. annoying the staffing office won't do it. forgetting to chart that dressing change won't do it. clogging up a g-tube because you didn't dissolve the tablets, while not really that smart, is not that bad. giving the 10am meds at noon because you got slammed with three admissions won't do it, either. we have all done this, and worse, and we are not all bad nurses, and neither are you.

    this is not permission to practice sloppy nursing (at least not from me). of course you check your meds, especially if they are unfamiliar; of course you look things up, so you know what you should be watching for. of course you collaborate with your coworkers, to pick their brains, when you have a new procedure or treatment to do.

    this is an exhortation to give over the fear and terror, because it is completely unrealistic. simply put, we can't afford it to have our new nurses to be working under a constant fear of the sword of damocles over their heads, hanging by a thread and just itching to fall on them. it's not there, kids, it really isn't. please work with us on this.

    please, take more deep breaths. please, look at the people around you who have been in practice for a year, three, seven, ten, twenty years. sunt angeli?
  5. by   TheCommuter
    Click on the link below to read about nurses in my current state of residence (Texas) whose licensure has been censured or revoked. If you read their individual stories you'll notice that very few, if any, of them are employed in LTC facilities.

    In a nutshell, this 'losing my license' fear is overrated.