need help quick - long

Nurses General Nursing


We are having a war with an ortho group and Monday I have a meeting with my manager,her manager to come up with strategies. I am the night shift supervisor. The complaints from these docs are usually petty one time things that don't really impact outcomes, but they are very verbal-to the point that my manager may be asked to leave. We are committed to opening a total joint unit next spring and have to have these docs on board. I'm torn between this reality and the loyalty to the nurses on the unit who are working themselves to death and doing a really good job. We are really just caving in to these unreasonable docs. Any thoughts?

Specializes in Home Health.

Only one, if they are bringing up problems, then I hope they have a list of exact, and specific events, dates, and times, and I would press them to name how many times a particular event occured, pressing them to identify the date and time. If they can't, then you can follow each compliant with "Would I be correct in interpreting that to mean this kind of event happened only once?" Then maybe I would ask the Quality nurse/dept to be at the meeting and give input. She may have knowledge that this is a common thing, happens on other floors, or is being already worked on, or maybe she (or he) can show impoved oputcomes for some of the "problems" that they have dealt with in the past, and maybe that's why they only happened one time. I think bringing the quality dept in shows that you are committed to the group, while at the same time, not betraying the nurses (at least I don't see how that would be a betrayal.)

Good luck!

I agree you have to get the issues out in the open. Remember, nursing is usually crunched in the middle between an administration that can't or won't come up with the necessary staffing and the doctors who want everything done with unrealistic expectations. I have seen this where the doctors play ball with administration and the nurses are left in the middle. So, get the details! Good Luck!

I agree with many of the proposals given. However it is important to identify all the elements, Docs, staff, management, adminstration needs, desires, complaints and issues.

Sometimes there are underlying issues related to single one-time complaints. Are the Docs just unhappy with your manager and bringing every complaint forward as a demostration of that unhappiness?

What do you think the doctors want to hear?

Who is committed to the total joint unit?

Are the Docs committed or are they aligned with another hospital?

Can you identify the complaints with a single doctor?

What do you know about the Ortho Docs manager?

Is he/she an old employee of the hospital or aligned with your competition?

If this is the first meeting, I do not attempt to problem solve. First meetings are often ventilation exercises for those with complaints. Get the facts first and followup with investigations on those facts. Doctors and nurses and others often magnify to stress their point.

"Committed to a total joint unit." I identify this as the weakness/strength depending on how the Docs and their manager view. Somewhere in the meeting, I would say, "we are committed to the total joint unit, however, I would not support its opening in the spring if we are not prepared as a unit to provide safe, effective nursing." or "It would be nice to open in the spring, however, a delay to make sure all players and personal are on the same page is not a bad thing." This might eliminate a threat or pressure point from the Docs.

In the end, one should keep a open mind. May be the Docs are right and they have indentified nursing issues which need correction in the unit. We have all worked with a nurse/nurses that do not have that caring work ethic which causes problems with the Docs and staff alike.

Have a glass of wine. This ain't "WAR" this is negotiations.

I suspect the Docs manager is going to come in and attempt to control the meeting, "strategies". Your strategy is to identify the complaints, investigate the complaint, analysis and problem solving of complaint. Once these are addressed, attempt to find out what the Docs want. I suspect they want something and it is not "just" the corrections to these simple petty problems.

After the meeting sit down and write everything you can remember and your thoughts about what was said, then put the paper away and look at it two days later. Its a great exercise and you will be surprised about your analysis post 2 days after the meeting.

Just some of my thoughts, Good Luck

[ May 13, 2001: Message edited by: RNed ]

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