How do Doctors treat nurses

Nurses General Nursing


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1 Article; 165 Posts

Just remember Doctors are not God's. And, they put on their pants the same way we do.

You are hired by the hospital, and do not need to take crap from any doctor.

They can be written up just as anyone else working and coming in to care for patients.

Doctors have review boards, that can even suspend them from coming to the hospital for awhile, because of behavor problems.

Nurses need to stand up for themselves more.

There is no need for all the crap we take. Everyone goal is the help the patient.

**** happens sometimes. But, that is part of any job.

Just say no, to abuse.



4,516 Posts

I've never seen a nurse treating a doctor badly. Just the opposite.

When abusive docs are the culture of the place it may be impossible to change things without becoming a casualty yourself, I've found. We have to choose our battles. Sometimea its just best to leave these kind of places. I have.

Some docs are wonderful to work with...those are the ones I go out of my way to assist. The jerks get very little from me as far as assistance. They find their own labs, charts, etc and can even set up and place their lines themselves if they're being buttheads. And I WILL call them...every hour if update them on OUR patient. ;)

I've always offered to be a witness when another nurse gets yelled at or treated badly. Too many nurses will not return the favor, however, and the doc is allowed by a passive staff and management team to continue their bad behavior unchecked. The passive nurses stay on, the assertive nurses get tired of fighting city hall and leave. The cycle continues. :(

Tweety, BSN, RN

33,847 Posts

Specializes in Med-Surg, Trauma, Ortho, Neuro, Cardiac.
I've never seen a nurse treating a doctor badly. Just the opposite.

The opposite is more of the norm. But I have seen on many occasions both at my first job and here, both teaching facilities, nurses treating the interns with disrespect, talking down to them, ignoring them, not being helpful. Putting them down behind their back (but that's abuse, that's immature). Not that we have to kiss their butt. I'm wondering if this doesn't sour some of their attitudes about nurses from the get go.

Rarely, if ever have I seen a nurse disrespect or treat badly an established doctor.

Yes, I've seen docs get angry and disrespectful of nurses on many occasions. I agree with your post here. Fortunately, especially now that I'm on day shift, out of dozens of interactions with MDs weekly I don't see them getting out of hand very often. But once is too often.

If I worked in an abusive culture as you describe, I would be one of the assertive casualties I'm afraid.

Specializes in Adult SICU; open heart recovery.
anyone else reading nursing against the odds by suzanne gordon? i am about 1/4 way through and it is enough to angry up the blood!!


no, i haven't read it yet, but i've been wanting to. i'm just worried it will get me all riled up! :rolleyes: i'm becoming very passionate about nursing politics.

Thunderwolf, MSN, RN

6 Articles; 6,621 Posts

Specializes in Med-Surg, Geriatric, Behavioral Health.

I really believe it depends on the "philosophy of the administration towards nursing" of that health care setting...where, as a result, that philosophy trickles downhill. In one facility, nursing may have the respect as "colleagues of care" whereas in another may have the respect akin to janitorial services. It depends upon administration.

Rose B

37 Posts

In the facility I work at we are encouraged to come to the side of any nurse who is being verbally abused by any doctor. The abuse tends to lose steam when the MD sees we are all supportive. We also have an immediate chain of command with administration if we are having problems getting what we need for a patient from an MD, and it works!


20 Posts

I am really glad that I asked this question. Thanks to everyone who has responded.



120 Posts

Specializes in Surgical Intensive Care.

I agree absolutely with what you are saying, and it is true that where I work the doctors go unpunished. As a matter of fact, we were discussing the other day that the doctors in the hospital I work in have WAY too much power. They demand and dictate to the hospital instead of the hospital and upper management controlling them. Such a shame....

mommatrauma, RN

470 Posts

Specializes in ER.
I work in a large teaching hospital in the ER and our docs for the most part, treat us great. We are included in decisions regarding patient care and our opinions are well-respected.

I agree...we actually learn from each other...I've also worked in smaller hospitals other than my level 1 and had similar experiences...I think its all in how you present yourself...respect is earned not given...and it goes both ways....


1,060 Posts

Specializes in Telemetry, ICU, Resource Pool, Dialysis.
In the facility I work at we are encouraged to come to the side of any nurse who is being verbally abused by any doctor. The abuse tends to lose steam when the MD sees we are all supportive. We also have an immediate chain of command with administration if we are having problems getting what we need for a patient from an MD, and it works!

Ahh, the mysterious Code White!! I've heard tell of it, but never seen it with my own eyes.

I've actually never seen blatant face to face abuse at my workplace. Usually the docs do it over the phone. Most of us just hang up, or put it on speaker phone.

We write up inappropriate orders or verbal abuse. Once we got an order to "take the G** D*** blood pressure cuff off the patient, and don't take another BP until 0800" If that had been my patient, I would have written it as an order, then gone on up the line for orders to treat the patient's hypotension, then written the variance report. The nurse did write a variance report, but I don't know how it was followed up. The patient ended up with renal issues.

live4today, RN

5,099 Posts

Specializes in Community Health Nurse.
Fellow Humans:

I am asking you to take some time to share some of your experiences of working with doctors and how they treat you. I have decided to go into nursing, and I am curious about how doctors treat nurses.



First I'd like to say "that eye" (your avatar) is spooking me. :rotfl:

Okay...I've worked with some great docs in my time! There has only been perhaps four or five docs that I can think of right now that I wanted to say "You're Fired" to. :rotfl:

Most docs love to teach, and I love to learn from them. I like the ones who have good bedside manners, and a happy disposition. When they are grumpy, I don't want to be around them.


27 Posts

Some doctors take nurses for granted,but it all depends on your response to the situation. I experienced a situation with a particular house officer (doctors who are understuding the surgical consultant) and I have no doubt that he has great respect for me thereafter. Years ago I worked on the surgical unit of the general hospital. One night when I came in on duty, I received report on a diabetic patient who had had amputation of her toes. She had been on a sliding scale of insulin three times daily. The nurse who handed over to me, said that the client had not eaten anything during the day, her urine was tested three times that day and was negative all three times yet she was given insulin all three times. I went to the patient and noticed that she was diaphoretic, non responsive and urine still negative, Igot on the phone immediately and called up the house officer I explained to him what the nurse told me and I also described to him what was happening to the patient presently. His response to me was that the patient always sweats like this and that he had seen the patient earlier in the evening. I said to him this is different and he needs to come urgently to collect blood and set up an i.v. He started argueing with me, I had no intention to argue back and forth with the doctor when I knew that the patient's condition needed immediate attention. I responded to him in a threatening voice "Dr,. P good night and slammed down the receiver as hard as I possibly could. I called up the night supervisor and appraised her of the situation, she came in withdrew blood for labs and was setting up the iv when the said doctor came rushing in. He turned to me and said to me, when I heard you got upset and slam down the receiver I came immediatly. He was very apologetic and voluntered to take the blood sample to the lab. Later he telephoned the results which was 2.0. he continued to be apologetic,saying that I should call him at any time he would be happy to come in no matter what the crisis. I was able to get him to see the seriousness of the situation without wasting valuable time arguing with him.

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