Male RN's in the delivery room.

Specialties Ob/Gyn


I am an RN student in my final semester. This semester I will be doing various OB/GYN shifts in the hospitals in my surrounding community. There are several men in my RN class. The male RN's I have worked with thus far have been very skilled in their practice and some of the best nurses I have had the chance to be around. So far in my educational experience, I have not worked in OB/GYN. I am curious to know how female patients in labor respond to having a male RN in their delivery room. I think being in labor and delivering a baby is a very private experience, at least it has been for me when I have had babies. Have you had positive or negative reactions from the female patient when a male RN is present? How have you handled this type of situation? I would love to hear any stories or scenarios you may have had. Thanks!

I'm sure things have changed a lot since I was a student in the Cretaceous Era, but even back then, I experienced only minor resistance. If the instructor intervenes to explain that all students need experience in all specialties, most patients agree. The only absolute leeway I could foresee is a patient with a religious objection to mingling of the sexes, or extreme modesty, but even then the male student should be involved as much as possible. In the few rare instances that my patient was hinting of being uncomfortable, I just asked them how they felt, and reassured them of my professionalism and concern for their well being. Good luck! Dave Dunn, RN

Specializes in Community, OB, Nursery.

There are some pts who for whatever reason will ask for a female rather than male RN/doc/whatever in L&D. But by and large our pts have responded well to our male L&D/mother-baby nurses. Usually it's other nurses that make a bigger deal about it than the pts.

Specializes in Pediatrics, High-Risk L&D, Antepartum, L.

I think most women are okay with it. We have so many male med students and they are rarely questioned.

Now, as a patient I would refuse a male student. Yes, you need to learn but it's not happening with my lady parts. I have female providers because my husband and I prefer females.

The patient's rights and wishes just need to be respected. I would explain to the patient the student is professional. I would never tell the patient the student needs to learn on somebody...that's not her issue to deal with.

Elvish, I hadn't thought of the nurses making a big deal out of a male RN in the L&D room. That's interesting. When I had my first child I must have had 5 student RNs in the room as well as a male Medical student. Irish, I didn't know back then (16 years ago) that I could refuse the educational experience of the students. It was an uncomfortable experience being on display for so many individuals and if I were faced with it today, I would refuse all the students as they would most likely be classmates. I don't like the thought of that at all. I guess I have had this issue in my past and I very concerned about the pts feelings and welfare. I really want to be my pts adocate in the best way possible. Thanks ddunnrn. I like that you ask your pts what their feelings are in the situation. I think communication is an art and self-confidence in the RN profession goes a long way!

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