Was I Right or Wrong?

  1. I had a little incedent happen the other night at work and would like some others peoples point of view on it. Here is a little view of some of the basics.

    Our unit is a 36 bed pediatric unit doing full cardiac, pulse ox, and non-monitored rooms. usually the unit is broken up into full monitored on one portion of the unit (the unit looks almost like an H from the floor plan with 2 halls on each leg of the H) and pulse ox and non-monitored on the other.

    Due to the central monitoring station on the monitored side the unit installed remote viewing areas down the hallway which connects the 2 portions of the unit which are loud (in my opinion).

    This night we had 3 nurses and 1 Tech on the monitored side and around 4 am a pts monitor started triple alarming (this one is the most urgent alarm) with a high heart rate (200 - 220+ which has been happening off and on since his admission ) I came out of one of my pts room and started down the hall towards the pts room. Both of the other nurses and the Tech we in other rooms. As I walked down the hall toward the pts room which was located in the middle of the connecting hallway I seen 3 other staff members in the nurses station located on the oxynet/un-monitored side (none of which even looked towards the alarms). I turned into the room to see the kid was having a seizure, I turned on the call light for help (which thinking back I should of pulled the thing out of the wall which would make a more urgent sound) as well as hollard for help which I don't think I did that loud enough. No one came.............. Less than a minute later another nurse from the monitored side came into the room to help about that time the Sz was ending and we were able to get the kids O2 sats up and the heart rate down a little.

    The fact that the kid had a Sz is not my concern was that NO ONE from the other side of the unit bothered to react to the triple alarm..

    After the kid was settled I went over to the other side where I seen one of the nurses that I seen at the nurses station when I went into the room (which happened to be the charge nurse) and said "A favor to ask, Next time there is a triple alarm going off CAN YOU PLEASE CHECK ON IT!!!!! The kid was having a Sz and all of us were in rooms."

    She stated that She could not hear the alarm and that no-one can from a certain distance. I mentioned that I have been in all parts of the unit and have clearly heard alarms, IV pumps, Syringe Pumps from all over our unit.. Granted I have some youth on her and sometimes I hear better than others but just the fact that NO ONE even looked down the hall to see where the alarm was coming from (which is maybe at the most 20-30 yards from the alarm hub) is what ticked me off.

    Not to mention I have been told on more than one occation when I was not on the Monitored side "Why are you going to look at those alarms you don't have any of those kids (or your not on that side)" :angryfire:

    Granted I could of brought up my concerns a little more tactful. I have talked with the unit manager about this and she stated it will be brought up to the charge nurses as well as in staff meetings.

    What do you all think?
    •  
  2. Visit Tizwit profile page

    About Tizwit

    Joined: Mar '05; Posts: 23; Likes: 3
    RN

    6 Comments

  3. by   Antikigirl
    Well, your urgency took the better of the situation..that happens often! Don't worry about that...but what can be done to better the situation...

    Has it been suggested that a memo go out to all nursing staff that if a certain alarm sounds all must go after they have established safety of current patient (like not leaving them on the toliet and such!).

    Another thing we have done in our HUGE facility with fall alarms is use baby montiors located centrally for those alarms so that they can be heard (and boy can they!!!!!). This has helped our injury fall rates go down tremendously now that we can hear them behind closed doors or chatty nursing stations!

    Good luck, and I bet you made them think...and that is a good thing!
  4. by   Tizwit
    After looking back at it I think something else that set me off is that I started on the unit where there were no monitors at all.. I think went to a Pediatric Sub-Acute unit where everyone was monitored and all the nurses, techs, and even Sec looked at the alarms/patients. When that unit was desolved and all the nurses went to the new Specialty Care Unit (mainly oncology) I went to the PICU where I worked for 8 months not to mention where if a low priority alarm went off you had 2-3 nurses respond, and if you had a triple alarm go off you had a resident or 2 as well as 2-3 nurses respond..

    I think I also got use to that level of response to alarms

    Brian
  5. by   VivaLasViejas
    I don't blame you for getting a wee bit testy over this. I would've done the same thing. Listening for and responding to alarms is EVERYONE'S responsibility, whether the alarm is coming from "your" section or not!! This is part of that "it's not my patient" attitude that frankly doesn't belong anywhere in health care, and it's time people were called on it. :angryfire

    Your manager should put it to your co-workers another way: what if that alarm had been coming from the room of THEIR child? Wouldn't THEY have wanted someone---anyone!---to go in and check on him/her? Would it have mattered to them one bit if the nurse answering the alarm was from the un-monitored unit? Of course not, and that's the way they need to think of it!

    Where I work, the policy is that no matter where an alarm or call light is coming from, we answer it. If a telemetry monitor is alarming from a room on the opposite hall, if a bed-check goes off in another nurse's section, if a patient we've never taken care of is yelling "Help!"........we check it out. "It's not my patient" doesn't fly---any nurse who dares to utter that phrase gets written up, and I think it should be the rule everywhere.

    But, that's just me.
  6. by   Tizwit
    I did want to mention that all in all we have a GREAT unit. And A WONDERFUL bunch of nurses. If I did not think this I would not work on this unit.. Just so everyone knows
  7. by   dbsn00
    Quote from Tizwit
    I had a little incedent happen the other night at work and would like some others peoples point of view on it. Here is a little view of some of the basics.

    Our unit is a 36 bed pediatric unit doing full cardiac, pulse ox, and non-monitored rooms. usually the unit is broken up into full monitored on one portion of the unit (the unit looks almost like an H from the floor plan with 2 halls on each leg of the H) and pulse ox and non-monitored on the other.

    Due to the central monitoring station on the monitored side the unit installed remote viewing areas down the hallway which connects the 2 portions of the unit which are loud (in my opinion).

    This night we had 3 nurses and 1 Tech on the monitored side and around 4 am a pts monitor started triple alarming (this one is the most urgent alarm) with a high heart rate (200 - 220+ which has been happening off and on since his admission ) I came out of one of my pts room and started down the hall towards the pts room. Both of the other nurses and the Tech we in other rooms. As I walked down the hall toward the pts room which was located in the middle of the connecting hallway I seen 3 other staff members in the nurses station located on the oxynet/un-monitored side (none of which even looked towards the alarms). I turned into the room to see the kid was having a seizure, I turned on the call light for help (which thinking back I should of pulled the thing out of the wall which would make a more urgent sound) as well as hollard for help which I don't think I did that loud enough. No one came.............. Less than a minute later another nurse from the monitored side came into the room to help about that time the Sz was ending and we were able to get the kids O2 sats up and the heart rate down a little.

    The fact that the kid had a Sz is not my concern was that NO ONE from the other side of the unit bothered to react to the triple alarm..

    After the kid was settled I went over to the other side where I seen one of the nurses that I seen at the nurses station when I went into the room (which happened to be the charge nurse) and said "A favor to ask, Next time there is a triple alarm going off CAN YOU PLEASE CHECK ON IT!!!!! The kid was having a Sz and all of us were in rooms."

    She stated that She could not hear the alarm and that no-one can from a certain distance. I mentioned that I have been in all parts of the unit and have clearly heard alarms, IV pumps, Syringe Pumps from all over our unit.. Granted I have some youth on her and sometimes I hear better than others but just the fact that NO ONE even looked down the hall to see where the alarm was coming from (which is maybe at the most 20-30 yards from the alarm hub) is what ticked me off.

    Not to mention I have been told on more than one occation when I was not on the Monitored side "Why are you going to look at those alarms you don't have any of those kids (or your not on that side)" :angryfire:

    Granted I could of brought up my concerns a little more tactful. I have talked with the unit manager about this and she stated it will be brought up to the charge nurses as well as in staff meetings.

    What do you all think?
    I think the child is lucky that you were there! The "not mine/your side" doesn't fly with me either :angryfire
  8. by   Peg804
    I think you have every right to be testy and then some. I have no doubt thatthe triple alarm you are talking about can be heart everywhere, and they chose to ignore it. A memo is a good idea, but shouldn;t common sense come into play here. A patient's monitor alarm has sounded, I guess you are the only one who is tuned into that frequency, Come on, maybe they are good people, but if we do not all work together, we are done for. what it the patient have been in vent tach, or vent fib, and it was ignored or "not heard". I would not want to be that nurse when the lawsuit came down. I don;t think the excuse that i wasn;t working that side of the unit will hold much water.

close