nursing home injustice? need advice! - page 2
I was recently got written up and suspended for an incident. I feel that I was innocent though for some reasons. I need some advice, as to know if this is really my fault, and if i deserve the... Read More
May 8, '09Occupation: registered nuse Joined: Apr '03; Posts: 3,118; Likes: 840I feel for you and every other LTC nurse who is out there doing everything they can do for residents who are in their care and get the shaft. I know so many underhanded dealings from Charge Nurses, ADON's and DON's that it makes me sick. I was called on the carpet so many times for sticking up for CNA's who do their job it finally just got too rediculous. I loved my rehab residents, worked extra hard for them so they could get back to their lives, wanted and expected feed back from everyone involved in their care, but same old story, always willing to point a finger and say all bad, never heard a word about the good outcomes, the catches of overlooked problems, the finding of ways to do what was needed but in a less stressful way for all concerned. I took care of 3 very important people from this state, they really appreciated my efforts but I was never given a kind word from other supervisors or higher ups. Finally, when I went out the door for the last time, she looked at me and said "we will miss you very much and we did appreciate the extra effort." Well, you could have told me sooner. Ofcourse, I realized after talking to a couple of the CNA's at a local store a few weeks later there was no one who wanted my job-too many duties. LOL!
May 8, '09Occupation: Staff nurse From: US ; Joined: Jul '05; Posts: 1,335; Likes: 817When you get a complaint in written form and have to sign that you read and understand it, take the time to add to it...your story, and then sign it. AND ask for a copy of it, or offer to make the copy yourself! Example:
"I acknowledge the above complaint. I wish to state that pt. took her meds; later in shift CNA saw pt. take med out of her mouth and was going to report to me but...blah blah blah.and forgot about it until Suzy Supervisor asked her about pt the night in question"...then sign.
May 10, '09Occupation: ADON of a SNF Specialty: 20 year(s) of experience in acute care and geriatric ; Joined: Jul '05; Posts: 983; Likes: 533What a miserable end to a problem that occurs so frequently. We are humans and make mistakes, the nurse that never made a mistake is the nurse that never worked.... It could have happened to anybody.
Your punishment was harsher than I would have wanted to see and I dont think you deserve it.
Was there any damage to the pt? Did the pt suffer because of the missing pill? Is there any long lasting effects d/t the incident?
If you really want to work there, (and I don't recommend it),
I would write a letter to the DON explaining that you made a mistake and did not notice the patient spit out the pill ( I would not pass the mistake on to the CNA who was also wrong in not informing you). I would add how important this job is to you and if given a second chance you will prove to them what an asset to the facility you can be. I would offer to apologize to the family and explain your mistake, taking responsibility for the incident.
In truth, most pts would be better off skipping a pill here and there anyway- other than antibiotics, Synthroid, Digoxin etc., most pts livers and kidneys will thank you for the vacation!!!!!
Whatever you decide, if you move on, I would fully disclose this mistake when applying for a job elsewhere, better they hear if from you as a lesson well learned than from the DON while checking references...
Try not to be bitter, sometimes it is easier to find a scapegoat than answer the families...and in truth you were wrong (a wrong I too am guilty of...)
May 10, '09Joined: Aug '04; Posts: 9,279; Likes: 4,301Quote from babybumblebeeNursing homes like this are the reason I always carried . Never had to use it, but I felt safer knowing that if they didn't support me or fired me or turned me into the BON for some ridiculous lie, I'd be protected.I feel that they will do anything to divert the fault on them (that is, systemic error) and to please the family members. I do feel I need to get out of this place because if they can not even support a nurse in something little, I can not imagine how they will stand behind a nurse when a big problem arises like a lawsuit.
May 10, '09Joined: Jan '07; Posts: 436; Likes: 292As a nurse who passes medications to 30 residents each day, I agree that this penalty was harsh and unjust. I have a few patients who pocket their meds and spit them out several minutes after they are given. With the schedule I am on - 2 hours to pass meds to 30 residents before I begin a new task - there is no time to stand around and make sure the pills have been swallowed instead of pocketed.
This whole thing will ruin the job atmosphere for you, and of course, eliminate any thoughts you may have had that your job was secure or that you are appreciated as a hard working nurse. Your DON should have supported you, in my opinion.
Or given you a verbal counseling, tops.
If I were you, I'd begin crushing that particular patients meds immediately, and looking for a different job.
May 10, '09Occupation: Staff nurse From: US ; Joined: Jul '05; Posts: 1,335; Likes: 817I hope my suggestion wasn't taken as a way to pass the buck onto the CNA. Those of us who have worked in LTC know that there are always situations where the best nurse and CNA will forget something due to the high volume of work...and interruptions. There is always someone needing toileting, help ambulating, diverting from eating soap, etc. My "blah blah blah" was not to be taken as a pitiful excuse given by a guilty CNA. If it was taken that way, please accept my humble apology.
May 10, '09Joined: Mar '09; Posts: 266; Likes: 179Quite frankly you do not want my opinion of nursing homes and their owners. I will however state that a week suspension was too much but without knowing the states rules in regard to this issue leaves me in the dark as to what should have been done. Personally a verbal discussion of the issue and a discussion of how to resolve this incident and to prevent it happening again should have been enough. It should have been a learning time not a punishment. You could not pay me enough to work in a nursing home ever and I mean EVER again.
May 11, '09Joined: Jul '08; Posts: 14; Likes: 8I was suspended for 1 day only. Anyways, I found out that I was not the only one who had received an unfair treatment at this facility. Other nurses had their shares as well. It is true, we have 25 people to take care of, and there are times there are admissions and transfers/discharges on the same day, making it a struggle to give out meds on time for 25 ppl. Sometimes I get 2 admissions too. I feel I barely have time to even talk to my residents but just give them their pills. This is making me want to leave the ltc scene...lol.
May 11, '09Joined: Jul '08; Posts: 14; Likes: 8thanks so much for ur support!!! made me feel better =)
May 11, '09Occupation: GRA Specialty: Gerontology, nursing education ; From: US ; Joined: Apr '09; Posts: 5,064; Likes: 7,343Quote from babybumblebeeIf this is the kind of treatment others have gotten as well, you might seriously want to look for employment elsewhere. Management by intimidation destroys morale. Decreased morale leads to higher turnover and burnout among the staff who stay. It decreases the quality of care because mistakes are covered up out of fear of punishment.I was suspended for 1 day only. Anyways, I found out that I was not the only one who had received an unfair treatment at this facility. Other nurses had their shares as well. It is true, we have 25 people to take care of, and there are times there are admissions and transfers/discharges on the same day, making it a struggle to give out meds on time for 25 ppl. Sometimes I get 2 admissions too. I feel I barely have time to even talk to my residents but just give them their pills. This is making me want to leave the ltc scene...lol.
Do you really want to work in a place in which you're made fearful that every mistake will result in suspension or termination? I'm not advocating that there are no consequences for errors but I do believe that disciplinary actions should be appropriate and consistent among all staff. I've seen nurses and CNAs get written up for minor errors while others who made serious errors that resulted in actual harm weren't disciplined at all.
Working in a toxic environment will take its toll on you; it will make you second-guess your ability as a nurse and it will make you angry and bitter. Do please consider getting out of that situation ASAP.Last edit by Moogie on May 11, '09 : Reason: grammar
May 13, '09Occupation: DON-LTC; WCC Specialty: Geriatrics, WCC ; From: US ; Joined: Sep '05; Posts: 685; Likes: 406I know that NHA's and those of usthat are DON's get our share of complaints. But, I never admit blame to the families... it's like throwing yourself under the bus. I always say that we will investigate and take care for it not to happen again. I don't make light of the situation but, there are usually two sides to the story.
May 14, '09Specialty: 4 year(s) of experience ; Joined: Aug '05; Posts: 80; Likes: 82I understand the way you are feeling now, but don't let it get on top of you. This kind of thing is very common. Also just ignore most of the talk about checking mouths of patients when you give them pills. No nurse in long term care has the time to do that, we barely have time to get the pills to the patients. I think its just one of the things that we as nurses have to deal with in long term care system.