Morally What would you do?


Hello all! I have a moral dilemma and I know y'all are the smartest ladies (and men) that could help me.

I am an office manager at a retirement home, I work at the front desk. We have a lifeline like system and when the bell rings I get it because I am there. One of out residents is ill and in bed, she called the desk today in distress.

I called the nurses phone and it rang 5 rings, I looked around and she was no where to be seen. I decided not to waste another minute,I am a licenced personal support worker so I ran to her room.

She was trying to get out of her bed to go to the washroom. I urged her to wait until the nurse came. I went to get the nurse and then went back to keep her company.About 3 minutes later she said she had to go and was no longer waiting. She got out of bed so I ended up helping her to the toilet. The nurse came about 5 minutes later. She would have had a BM in the bed.

Now she is angry because this is not my "role" in this facility. I am however a human and the nurse took the time to grab meds, and water and all this stuff on the way there, taking her time.

I could not look at her and not help.


762 Posts

You are the office manager. It would not be out of line to hold a NON-judgmental meeting to discuss this issue. Perhaps the bell should ring in other areas also.


1,116 Posts

Specializes in NICU, ER, OR. Has 18 years experience.

WEll, this is a tough one. I am not sure of the regulations in canada, but here in the US, if that pt fell, or was injured while you were assisting her, you would be in trouble. But, morally, I agree, I would feel obligated to help her, too.

burn out

809 Posts

I am not for sure but I do not think you need a license to walk someone to the bathroom-this is not totally a nursing function. Why do you have the call light ring in your office if you are not suppose to respond to it-or are you suppose to keep an eye on the nurse and how long it takes her to respond to the light ?

leslie :-D

11,191 Posts

give me a break.....what do you suppose would have happened to this poor pt. if you weren't there? my goodness, the nurse should recognize the fall risk of the pt., and she should be grateful that you were there. she's just probably pissed because you (inadvertently) made her look bad. well that's too darned bad. furthermore, i think it's marvelous that you were so eager to help out. often i get aggravated because too many turn their heads the other way.


Thanks guys! I have a moral obligation to help. That is why I work with the elderly. I responded a couple of times for other issues because the nurse was no where to be found.

Techinally I am supposed to call her right away but half the time the portable isn't on anyway.

I have another question if anyone knows, do you have to be regulated to give O2? This is not for me its just a general question.


513 Posts

oxygen is considered a drug, if this is what you are asking...

Yes what kind of training would you have to have? Could a practical nurse give it?


832 Posts

Specializes in Hospice, Med/Surg, ICU, ER. Has 9 years experience.
Yes what kind of training would you have to have? Could a practical nurse give it?

Technically, nobody can give O2 w/o a physician order; however, most facilities have protocols or standing orders that state under which circumstances O2 may be given immediately.


762 Posts

Oxygen can be dangerous to some elderly patients. It can cause some COPDer's to stop breathing. Let a nurse administer it.

leslie :-D

11,191 Posts

we have a standing order for 2L/min prn, dyspnea.


I never said I was going to even think of giving it, at least until I graduate from school and with an order. I was wondering what circumstances would warrent it with a portable O2 tank. Can someone give it at their discretion, like what Oxygen Sat rate would warrent it in someone who was just having a little trouble brething??

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