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Jehovah's Witness nurses in the critical care unit?

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Great post from del2009 :) I work with 2 JW nurses and they do hang their own blood products. I can tell you, that when we are short staffed and you have one of these kids that is getting blood product upon blood product, your co-workers will check it, but they have their own assignments to do and would not have time to hang all this every 20 minutes if you are pushing FFP and such.

I commend you for being honest up front, and there are other areas to go into that may not clash with your beliefs. You have to realize that, even if you are the world's best nurse, if you can't carry a full load, esp in a busy ICU setting, you are going to be resented at some point. Sad, but it is the reality of it. :( Good luck to you!

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We don't have a CCU at our Rural Hosp, but we have a Jehovah's Witness nurse who will not take care of a pt who may need a transfusion. I guess we work around it due to our small hosp and limited nursing staff. But, it can be difficult for the other nurses, especially when you have 4 nurses on the floor and 2 of them are LPNs who cannot start it and the other is Charge and has other duties. Usually it is not an issue.

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#1 you might want good liability insurance!

when i was in nursing school we were told 1st semester that if you cannot provide the care that a patient needs then look elsewhere or pick a field of nursing that is appropriate. On med surg tele you might have pt going downhill or a code and are you going to refuse to hand blood in that instance? And what if you took too long to get blood to a pt because you were waiting for another nurses help and the pt was bleeding out. The hospital probably should have not even hired you for med/surg. We give blood daily where I work. You might have a convicted rapist transported to your hospital from jail. Will you refuse care to him?

I don't think it's religious discrimination for them not to put you in that area or decide not to hire you. It's more like a liability and discrimination against the pt

There are many scenarios to list that are not what we would like to do as nurses, but have to do for the patient and if unable to do them then maybe going into another area of nursing would be best

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i agree that it's not as simple as "just spiking the bag and pushing the button". how many times may the button need to be re-pushed due to occlusions, or new iv sites. how about multiple spikings of bags. i've had patients receiving blood that are confused and pulling out lines and pinching iv lines, in which i've had to restart the blood many, many times over in a shift. i don't think anyone was rude in these posts at all. i think sometimes people get upset when they feel like something they believe in is being criticized. unfortunately, this is just the way it is. we learned in nursing school that we have to leave our personal beliefs at the door because we are advocating for our patients, not ourselves. if we cannot do that, then we need to move on to another area of nursing, or another career.

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to the OP, I am just curious, can you do accu checks? also, I understand what the nurses above are saying , it is in your scope of practice, I may not like to go to another unit to suction a trach, I don't feel that comfortable doing it, cause I don't do it enough, but if It is in my SCOPE, I better not refuse it for that reason, that could be an issue with my license, because it IS in my scope of duties an LPN can do. And I'm not saying they would report me, they would re-educate me at work.. , but they probably could if they wanted to. ..... I wish you luck finding your job.

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I personally don't know of any JW working in the ICU at the hospital I work at, but then again, I just don't know many people at my hospital. Lolz! Anyway, I do know some JWs who have worked in the ER, and they all said that the staff was very respectful of their beliefs and that they were very helpful, and that is not always the case. They said that most of the time if the triage nurse or Charge nurse knew that a patient might require blood they would move patients around whenever possible so that they would not have to be put in the situation to spike blood. If the patient was a heavier load she would ask the JW to assist the nurse who took on the patient that needed blood.

Many people aren't receptive of others beliefs, especially when they seem so "strange", but no matter how strange or no matter how much sense anothers beliefs DON'T make sense, I try to respect them and help them keep their beliefs, I mean isn't that what we are taught in school, when we learn about those with various beliefs and cultures, because I'm in school now and they are drilling it down our throats.

I am one of Jehovah's Witnesses and we are taught to respect everyone's beliefs no matter how different they are from our own. You will ultimately have to make the decision yourself. Many who aren't JWs won't understand why you choose what you do, but that's OK because they're not you. If you decide to work in an area that might put you in the position to have to give blood, which can be any area in nursing really but some more than others, then you are going to have to be sure that you have a co-workers who are willing to accept that belief, and be willing to work something out with you regarding it.

Just like some wouldn't want to work with patients that might need them to assist in an abortion, you have to make a choice on how you will handle such a situation. I'm sure that with some thought you will know what you want to do and how as well.

Hope everything works out for you. :)

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Long time reader, first time poster here...

First of all, I understand your passion for a certain area of nursing, bit I'm taking into account your lack of real world clinical setting experience. Ultimately, you need to weigh your desire to work ccu against how far you are willing to participate in actions that challenge your views. I would love to know exactly what you are opposed to doing. Personally, I wouldn't mind pressing "start", but it would be quite a burden to have to spike, prime, and set the pump as well. If you aren't opposed to that, then it seems reasonable. However, in an emergent situation, there is no "checking" blood-- there's "spike prime go" and I've had to literally SQUEEZE units of blood into someone like rolls of toothpaste.

...that said, I don't even work icu,I'm inpatient oncology/hematology. We have 5-7 pts each, more than one requiring numerous transfusions on any shift. Not too many days go by without me having a bld tx ordered. On a good night I have to run around just to find someone that has time to just check in the product.

Like previous posters, I am prochoice but for me abortion is wrong and I couldn't participate in the act itself; however, I wouldn't put myself in a position that required me to make such a choice because it is not fair for the patient or fellow staff.

I'd love to know your feelings behind the act of giving blood and exactly what you are/not willing to do and why? I respect your religious beliefs, and would love to gain a better understanding of them. Please fill us in! And I'd like to say that I greatly appreciate your honesty in telling potential employers about these things.

In any event, I wish you well

Anne

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OP, what a great opportunity for you to explore your personal beliefs regarding your profession and your religion. I hope this affords you sufficient insight into what you are and are not willing or able to do as a nurse. Introspection never hurt anyone. Some JWs on the board have related their personal experiences; other posters have asked some pertinent, reasonable questions, and have described situations in which you might find yourself. A lot of great food for thought here for you.

On my med unit, you might have to hang blood or blood products from time to time. It's not a daily event. If a JW worked for us and refused to hang blood/blood products, it wouldn't be a burden to trade some tasks. We have a few nurses who don't do IV sticks; they are bad at it, and don't often have the opportunity to practice. In the event that an IV goes bad after IV therapy has left, they usually offer to pass some meds or perform some other tasks for a coworker who has better IV skills, in exchange for that coworker taking the time to restart the IV. No one thinks twice about it.

Good luck.

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Long time reader, first time poster here...

First of all, I understand your passion for a certain area of nursing, bit I'm taking into account your lack of real world clinical setting experience. Ultimately, you need to weigh your desire to work ccu against how far you are willing to participate in actions that challenge your views. I would love to know exactly what you are opposed to doing. Personally, I wouldn't mind pressing "start", but it would be quite a burden to have to spike, prime, and set the pump as well. If you aren't opposed to that, then it seems reasonable. However, in an emergent situation, there is no "checking" blood-- there's "spike prime go" and I've had to literally SQUEEZE units of blood into someone like rolls of toothpaste.

...that said, I don't even work icu,I'm inpatient oncology/hematology. We have 5-7 pts each, more than one requiring numerous transfusions on any shift. Not too many days go by without me having a bld tx ordered. On a good night I have to run around just to find someone that has time to just check in the product.

Like previous posters, I am prochoice but for me abortion is wrong and I couldn't participate in the act itself; however, I wouldn't put myself in a position that required me to make such a choice because it is not fair for the patient or fellow staff.

I'd love to know your feelings behind the act of giving blood and exactly what you are/not willing to do and why? I respect your religious beliefs, and would love to gain a better understanding of them. Please fill us in! And I'd like to say that I greatly appreciate your honesty in telling potential employers about these things.

In any event, I wish you well

Anne

Your post makes so much sense. When I got hired at the hospital where I now work I let them know that I was a JW. You're so right about being upfront and honest about your beliefs before you are hired. It wouldn't be fair to bring something like that up in the middle of an emergency. Let your prospective employer know your beliefs ahead of time, that way they can make an informed decision about hiring you in that specific area of nursing, or any for that matter. I would let my employer know my beliefs on blood or any subject that could confront me while at work, even if I worked on psych. Good post, and thanks for being so open minded.

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Think long and hard about this. Things can go bad, fast. There may be multiple codes on your current unit. I've seen it happen and there never are enough staff to manage them. I'm sure you can see where this is going. What if there is no one to spike and start your blood? Would that cause an otherwise preventable death? I fully respect my co-workers and patients religious views although I am agnostic. I wouldn't want to see a nurse lose her livelihood over unforeseen circumstances. I hope you can find the answers within yourself you are seeking.

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OP, what a great opportunity for you to explore your personal beliefs regarding your profession and your religion. I hope this affords you sufficient insight into what you are and are not willing or able to do as a nurse. Introspection never hurt anyone. Some JWs on the board have related their personal experiences; other posters have asked some pertinent, reasonable questions, and have described situations in which you might find yourself. A lot of great food for thought here for you.

On my med unit, you might have to hang blood or blood products from time to time. It's not a daily event. If a JW worked for us and refused to hang blood/blood products, it wouldn't be a burden to trade some tasks. We have a few nurses who don't do IV sticks; they are bad at it, and don't often have the opportunity to practice. In the event that an IV goes bad after IV therapy has left, they usually offer to pass some meds or perform some other tasks for a coworker who has better IV skills, in exchange for that coworker taking the time to restart the IV. No one thinks twice about it.

Good luck.

This is what nursing is about. Not jumping all over your coworkers because they can't do something - physically, mentally, spiritually, or emotionally. In my hospital we are taught to treat eat other like we treat our patients. I think it's a great concept.

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Hello

This is my first time posting a thread. I was just wondering if anyone is or knows of a Jehovah's Witness nurse who works in a critical care unit. Also if you dont mind can you tell me at which hospital? The reason I am asking is that I am also one of Jehovah's Witnesses and I just passed my NCLEX. Yay :yeah: I really want to work in the critical care unit, specifically the CCU. However, when I explained to the supervisor of the ICU/CCU about the issue with the blood transfusion, she said she couldnt hire me on to the critical care unit. Yes, this hospital is offering critical care positions to new grads. I was really devastated because i wanted to really work in the CCU. :crying2: So I was wondering if it's the same for other hospitals. I explained to the supervisor that I am willing to care for the patient who is receiving the blood transfusion, but that I would need a second nurse(most likely the nurse who would be verifying the blood with me) to spike the blood and press the start button. I do understand why the critical care environment may not want to have a nurse who cannot initiate the blood transfusion. So I was just wondering if I do not have a chance at all in a critical care unit. For now I am orienting in the med-surg floor and I still have lingering feelings for the critical care unit. :sniff:

Thank You

I think you need to know what you have, have not to disclose when you are searching for a job, or you would be a very long time in finding one.

Do not mention, your religion (of any religion), BEFORE you are hired for a job. The law doesn't require it, nor can they legally ask you the question. Regardless of the job you are applying for.

I disagree that you cannot be involved with verifying the blood...as long as it is another nurse that spikes the blood and connects it to the patient, that falls under patient safety...and it should be treated no differently than a medication check.

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