Nosy question?


I'm a support staffer. I knew of a patient in serious condition whose family, for whatever reason, didn't plan to visit, and my understanding was that they did not expect to come in on the day I learned about them and perhaps not at all. One of the care team the next day asked me if the family was coming and if family visited with the patient the previous day. I knew family didn't visit the previous day. This wasn't a need-to-know question, since this person wasn't the nurse, and surely the nurse was in contact with family. So, I ignored the question about family visiting yesterday and said I didn't know about today. I know that the person who asked likely did so from concern, but I just felt like this person didn't need to know that piece of this family's experience.  Did my response seem appropriate? How do you handle (sort of) nosy (albeit well-intentioned) questions? 

Specializes in Critical Care, Capacity/Bed Management. Has 8 years experience.

I think you handled that appropriately, there have been multiple times where I have had people inquire about a patient out of curiosity or just wondering about an update and like yourself my response is always vague if they do not need to know. I usually stick to "I'm not sure", "I'm not aware of xyz", "I don't know". I also think tone helps drive a point that you are not comfortable discussing the matter as well. 

Hope that helps!


40 Posts

It does help, thank you!