Night Shift at a Rehab


I am an RN who works overnight at a rehab. When they trained me and then for the first few months I primarily worked in the new building which services about 40 detox patients. Without warning they began scheduling me in the other building which services about 75 patients. In the newer building they have more staff, it is cleaner, the med room is a good size, and the system for passing meds is better. When I pull meds over there overnight its 3-4 1/2 pages of meds. In the other building the med room is the size of a small closet for up to 75 patients. It's old and facilities does not clean it the way they clean the new building. Overnight I do all the same work as 2 nurses in the other building but for roughly 30 more patients than the other building. I do bedtime and morning med pass in each buildings. However in the older building I do all the paper work, round on the patients, and pull meds which is 5-8 pages of meds. It takes me several hours to pull meds and it is a very daunting task. They use a pharmacy that sends stuff in bottles, blister packs, and the let a way to many patients use own meds. I literally do everything the charge nurse and med nurse do in the new building. When I was trained they told me I was the Charge Nurse in the old building but recently they informed me the charge nurse in the new building is my charge nurse. This makes no sense because they literally do absolutely nothing for my nurses station besides room changes. Then recently an email went out that our clinical aids cannot do rounds in the building I am in overnight. It is the nurse in that building job even though that means a clinical aid overnight sits in the clinical aid office and does nothing meanwhile I am killing myself with the two heaviest med passes, pulling the meds, and doing all of the paperwork and documentation. When I complain to management now they tell me "we have always done it this way" but as our patients increase and their needs increase this position has not changed. I'm angry that there are 2 others nurses and 1 house supervisor overnight yet Im pulling 5-8 pages of meds while they watch YouTube. Then I have to stop what I am doing so the clinical aids overnight can also watch YouTube. Im angry that I'm monitoring the nursing assessments, labs, appointments, and patient care for all these patients. Printing and preparing the paperwork and working harder than everyone overnight and yet the one watching YouTube all night not helping me in any way shape or form is the charge nurse. I'm angry that a new med room was promised and it hasn't happened and patients comment that the nurses station isn't as nice. They even review that they get better nursing care in the newer building because their perception is that newer and cleaner is better. Did I mention that the newer detox building transfers the patients they don't like or are difficult to my nurses station with less staff so they don't have to deal with them. It is just all exhausting mentally to know management has turned a blind eye and won't insist we get a bigger med room. Or insist the clinical aids help nursing oovernight. Or insist at least one other nurse help pull the 5-8 pages of meds (the part I hate the most). I used to enjoy this job but I feel like a second pharmacy to this facility. I don't FEEL like a nurse. 75 patients to 2 nurses 3 if in lucky there is no time to get to know them. Or provide quality nursing care. I even made a med error recently becuase there is no safe way to pass meds to 75 patients. Some of management has worked as a floor nurse so they know they have just turned a blind eye. It pays well and the benefits are the best I've ever had but I can't tolerate everyone else being LAZY around me. It's insulting to know everyone else can kick back at night and all the pressure and strain is on me. The other nurse who works my shift has said she doesn't even know if she wants to be a nurse anymore.

Has anyone else experienced anything like this?

Nunya, BSN

771 Posts

Specializes in NICU/Mother-Baby/Peds/Mgmt. Has 41 years experience.

I haven't experienced anything like this and if I did I would be job-hunting STAT.


6,469 Posts

Knowing that you aren't going to change what's going on, what are you going to do about it?

Venting is one thing, but getting angry and doing nothing is nonsensical. Get OUT of there before something terrible happens.


38,333 Posts

31 minutes ago, JKL33 said:

Knowing that you aren't going to change what's going on, what are you going to do about it?

Venting is one thing, but getting angry and doing nothing is nonsensical. Get OUT of there before something terrible happens.

This. Many times over. You say you are angry but are you angry enough to leave? And yes, I have worked on ulcers when around a bunch of LAZY people. And there is that never-ending feeling that I am playing third fiddle to all of the LAZY people. Guess what? It is my problem, because nobody else cares beyond putting me in a bad light because I speak up for myself. When I want to stop feeling bad about the lazy people around me, I will find myself without a job and no inclination to complain because I am not working. The best way to approach this laziness situation, as I see it, is to take one step back from my own work level and remind myself that I go in there to do what I do in eight hours and nothing more. If they don't do it, I can as easily leave it undone as to do it on my shift. Nobody forces me to do the work of others too. They just hope that I do and wish I would keep silent about it.

"nursy", RN

289 Posts

Specializes in ICU, ER, Home Health, Corrections, School Nurse. Has 40 years experience.
On 1/8/2020 at 9:39 AM, Aphelps28 said:

It pays well and the benefits are the best I've ever had

You gotta make a choice....your sanity or your paycheck.

Has 33 years experience.

Getting angry is the first step. Now... get angry enough to move on.

It's a no win situation... they are using and abusing you.

Best wishes in your new job.