does giving a suppository count as a med?

Nurses General Nursing



I was just wondering if a suppository is a medication. I thought it is. I was told buy the nurse to administer one to her patient(I'm a Nurse Extern-No license yet). Anyway they all thought it was funny making me do it, not like I haven't done it many times before at clinicals. But I thought it counted as passing a med and that I shouldn't been told to do it. The patient didn't wind up needing it so I never did give it. What do you think?


2,259 Posts

Specializes in LDRP; Education.

Yes, a suppository counts as a med pass.

What's the maturity level of these nurses? They ask you to give a suppository and then giggly, giggle about it?

What the heck??


38 Posts

I completely agree. And they are not very mature at all. In fact ever since I've worked on my floor with them I have had doubts about nursing in general. They've only exposed me to constant complaining about everything they have to do. Hopefully nurses are not like them everywhere or I'll have to change professions. I can't see myself working with people like that for another 30 + years.


89 Posts

Not all nurses are like that. Just remember how they were with you and concentrate on never being that way. Be the example to them.


648 Posts

I would tell the nurses or nurse in question that a suppository is a medicine and that you are not comfortable with the delegation. You have no problem with inserting suppositories when appropriately supervised. Within your current role, it's not in your scope of practice as you understand it. IF it is in your scope of practice, you hadn't been oriented to that.

This communication will telegraph to her that you are using "professional nurse-speak" and hopefully put her in the right frame of mind to address your concerns. If she is flippant or insists that it is in your scope of practice, then you need to ask to see the policy and procedure that supports that. If she cannot offer support for asking you to do this, _but still wants you to do it_, i'd take my concerns to the supervising nurse (go one step up). Alternatively this nurse may say something like, "Oh, I'll DO it" like she's doing YOU a big favor. This will be her way of taking the out, and you need to let her take the out. But be wary of this nurse; she may be trying to inappropriately delegate in the future--or maybe she just had a brain fart and she'll get the message.

If you don't get satisfaction from the clinical nurse, go one one step up to her immediate supervisor. Use professional nurse-speak again. If you get the run around at that level, question whether this is the right institution for you.

I guess you are being asked to run a little gauntlet that alot of people fail; the poop and rectum gauntlet. It's trite. Most nursing situations will offer ample opportunity to prove yourself on this particular gauntlet over and over. Frankly a suppository is a small thing (in terms of the poop and rectum gauntlet) as opposed to a full bed, scapula to popliteal space mega-poop. I agree about the general maturity level here. Sorry THEY were your "intro to nursing."

Nurse K-Bear

62 Posts

Do not be afraid to tell a nurse that it is not in your scope of practice. When I was a nurse extern, nurses used to always pawn off there job to me like they were helping me by giving me the experience.

My job as an extern was just above the CNA level. with the addition of changing dressings, obtaining glucometer readings, setting up and assisting staff (MD, RN Licensed staff) with procedures and some patient education reinforced by the RN. When a nurse asked me to do something not on that list I would respond I am not able to do such and such, but if you need me to assist you I can.

When I was paired up with negative staff, I would just think to myself I need to do the opposite of this. I was told as an extern if you do a procedure not in your scope of practice you could kiss the thought of a nursing license goodbye. You do not want to loose it before you get it! You might want to go in the float pool so you are exposed to several areas of nursing to give you good experience and help you decide what specialty you want. Do not give up not all nurses are negative. Negativity is what stands out most thought. negativity is like a vacum cleaner. Do not let it suck you in!

Nurse K-Bear

62 Posts

Oh yes giving a suppository is a med. Definately do not give meds! big trouble there!!

I also found if you let the nursing staff know what you are studing in class, they would point stuff out to me more.

(Sorry this post is so long).


564 Posts

I'm with everybody else-a suppositry is a med-it must be signed off on the MAR. Don't let those foolish, giggly nurses set you up again! You are wise to question them. Always question what you are not sure of, and if you think the answer you have been given may not be entirely accurate, or truthful, ask someone else.

When I was first a LPN, I was the only LPN that worked (or ever had) on our hospital's tele/stepdown unit. The RN's basically put me on ignore, and always acted totally put out if they had to flush my heplocks (couldn't do IV stuff at first). I finally gave up on them, and started stepping through the double doors to ICU, and sking the first nurse I saw (that wasn't busy) what I needed to know. Of course they wanted to know why I was asking them. And, of course, I told them that my RN's weren't interested in my questions, or in helping me. Boy, did they take me under their wings! They told me to come ask them whenever I had a question, and they were all the time coming to get me for special procedures to observe or training to participate in, after hours. I never left our unit to step into ICU until all of my chores were done, and asked one of the RN's to call me if one of my folks needed me. Boy, did my RN's get their noses out of joint! The began asking why I didn't ask them stuff, and what it was about me that was so special that I got invited to participate with the ICU nurses, when they didn't! I laughed to myself, when this started happening, and evenutally began asking my RN's qustions again. I would say that those ICU RN's who weren't too busy for questions or to further my learning, were the most positive aspect of my early nursing career!;) :nurse:


38 Posts

Thanks everyone for the support. I will be at work this weekend and am asking our assistant manager to let her nurses know , or remind them, that I CANNOT pass meds yet. I'm glad to see others were externs and have dealt with the negative things that I have, and yet still finished school. I am in the process of a transfer to another floor. So hopefully the change will do it for me. Thanks again everyone!


735 Posts


First, welcome to Allnurses!

You are right to question anything you are unsure of. I'm sure many here are like myself and will admit to learning new things all the time.

Nurses are strange creatures. Some are petty and some are immature but for the most part nursing is a constant learning experience with daily challenges.

You will do fine. Hang in there and do your best.



62 Posts

I learned that in nursing school. I also learned and have done it a few times when refuse to give any med I am uncomfortable with/ don't know etc.... ( I will of course look up the drug or get in touch w/ pharmacy asap) You always have to know your scope of practice. Laura LPN

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