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Nurse Beth Nurse Beth, MSN (Advice Column) Writer Innovator Expert Nurse Verified

Nurses Call the Governor of Tennessee

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You are reading page 4 of Nurses Call the Governor of Tennessee. If you want to start from the beginning Go to First Page.

4 minutes ago, Nurse Beth said:

I think nurses are often set up to NOT be mindful. To juggle competing distractions. Airline pilots don't carry a phone and manage constant alarms and call lights with lives in their hands.

 

 

So the radio and the multitude of settings, warning lights, radar, weather and other aircraft don’t count? Or the passengers?

I’m really not trying to be argumentative but seriously, we don’t have the corner market on difficult jobs with a multitude of distractions. The difference is that when airline pilots make mistakes they usually die too. 

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33 minutes ago, BarrelOfMonkeys said:

I’m actually hoping this goes to court and changes how we do things. Setting new precedent for maybe better patient ratios in healthcare which can reduce nurse mistakes/errors/misjudgements (whatever you choose to call it) due to poor working conditions and in turn promote healthier outcomes. It’s sad this has happened but I’m all for hoping this awful reality is the thing that helps the system change. 

This a thousand times.  The best possible outcome now is for the public to find out just how dangerous hospitals are and to demand appropriate staffing levels.

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Just now, TriciaJ said:

This a thousand times.  The best possible outcome now is for the public to find out just how dangerous hospitals are and to demand appropriate staffing levels.

We all wish the public would see this for what it is- a layered multi-factorial system problem in addition to one nurse's performance but I don't think that's  how it's going to play out.

The whole focus is on bypassing the override (as if that's not almost routine in some areas, like ED). Very little to nothing said about staffing and multi-tasking.

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This is like the third thread about this case from the same OP. What's going on here?

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19 minutes ago, vanessaem said:

This is like the third thread about this case from the same OP. What's going on here?

Guilty as charged, it's me. Apparently I can't be quiet when I'm passionate. The 3 threads are related, but separate.

  • The first was an article back on December 1, 2018.
  • Next was a short poll 2 months later when she was arrested.
  • Then a short call to action with contact info for the Governor and DA.

Honestly, if she goes to court or is sentenced, I will probably write another article.

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1 hour ago, Wuzzie said:

So the radio and the multitude of settings, warning lights, radar, weather and other aircraft don’t count? Or the passengers?

I’m really not trying to be argumentative but seriously, we don’t have the corner market on difficult jobs with a multitude of distractions. The difference is that when airline pilots make mistakes they usually die too. 

Add to that mechanical problems at 30,000 feet, air traffic control issues, unruly passengers, passengers experiencing emergency medical problems, severe turbulence, ice storms, other air traffic in the sky around one, crew members becoming sick during the flight, delays on the ground; the list goes on and on, just as it does for other industries besides nursing.  I just watched a video about the airline captain who landed a passenger aircraft on the Hudson River after a flock of geese flew into the engines just after take off.  With all respect to Nurse Beth, I think it's quite naive to think that other industries don't deal with critical problems and distractions also.  Airline pilots are making decisions constantly.  

Edited by Susie2310

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29 minutes ago, Susie2310 said:

Add to that mechanical problems at 30,000 feet, air traffic control issues, unruly passengers, passengers experiencing emergency medical problems, severe turbulence, ice storms, other air traffic in the sky around one, crew members becoming sick during the flight, delays on the ground; the list goes on and on, just as it does for other industries besides nursing.  I just watched a video about the airline captain who landed a passenger aircraft on the Hudson River after a flock of geese flew into the engines just after take off.  With all respect to Nurse Beth, I think it's quite naive to think that other industries don't deal with critical problems and distractions also.  Airline pilots are making decisions constantly.  

They are making critical decisions and do have distractions. Pilot Sully is a national hero. So are countless nurses I've worked with.

The difference is it's not built into a pilot's job description that they are purposely and routinely interrupted while making said decisions. Pilots aren't going to answer the light of the passenger in Row 1C who wants a drink.

Whereas nurses are expected to mange call lights, push meds, answer their phones, and so on. As if they are not making critical decisions.

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1 hour ago, Wuzzie said:

So the radio and the multitude of settings, warning lights, radar, weather and other aircraft don’t count? Or the passengers?

I’m really not trying to be argumentative but seriously, we don’t have the corner market on difficult jobs with a multitude of distractions. The difference is that when airline pilots make mistakes they usually die too. 

I completely agree. I would be curious if the same people who do not think she should be criminally charged (charged, not automatically found guilty) would feel the same way if it were a similar scenario in a field they weren’t directly involved in and thus not as passionate about. Not sure if everyone would be calling for it to just be handled internally if it were an airline pilot, truck driver, cab driver, etc. But I absolutely could be wrong.

Edited by JadedCPN
Typo

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Just now, Nurse Beth said:

They are making critical decisions and do have distractions.

But it's not built into their job description that they are purposely and routinely interrupted while making said decisions. Pilots aren't going to answer the light of the passenger in Row 1C who wants a drink.

Whereas nurses are expected to mange call lights, push meds, answer their phones, and so on. As if they are not making critical decisions.

Perhaps some airline captains of passenger aircraft will join in the discussion to explain their job description and stressors/distractions they face while doing their jobs.  Airline captains have responsibility for the aircraft, passengers, and crew.  Airline captains take radio calls from Air Traffic Control.  No, they don't have to serve coffee to passengers but they have numerous other stressors and distractions.

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Could we have a legal expert weigh in on this? I've looked into criminal prosecution of nurses who have committed medication errors and it seems like the first case in the US occurred as far back as 1998 in Colorado. I no longer could find a decent link to the events surrounding that case aside from this one:

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/290856623_Lesson_from_the_Denver_medication_errorcriminal_negligence_case_Look_beyond_blaming_individuals

...also, there was a medication error involving a nurse in Wisconsin in 2006 that also led to criminal charges and I found details of it in this link:

http://asq.org/qualitynews/qnt/execute/displaySetup?newsID=1056

What struck me about those cases was that the nurses involved struck a plea deal and did not get jail time except one nurse in the Colorado case who had a hearing in court and was acquitted by a jury. None of the nursing licenses were revoked though they all faced disciplinary sanctions after their respective BON investigations concluded.

I also came upon a phenomenon called "Inattentional Blindness" which is apparently a thing making it even more important that we have layers of safeguards in place (i.e., not overriding non-emergent meds, bar code scanning) because having the "5 rights" drilled in our brains apparently doesn't always work. More info on that here:

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3474444/

The Vanderbilt case is strikingly similar but we are in a day and age when technological advancements exist to allow multiple layers of safeguards yet they were blatantly ignored. I wonder how that would play in the outcome.

Also read:

https://www.nursingcenter.com/cearticle?an=00128488-200901000-00003&Journal_ID=260876&Issue_ID=848807#P32

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4 hours ago, Wuzzie said:

So the radio and the multitude of settings, warning lights, radar, weather and other aircraft don’t count? Or the passengers?

I’m really not trying to be argumentative but seriously, we don’t have the corner market on difficult jobs with a multitude of distractions. The difference is that when airline pilots make mistakes they usually die too. 

 

3 hours ago, Susie2310 said:

Add to that mechanical problems at 30,000 feet, air traffic control issues, unruly passengers, passengers experiencing emergency medical problems, severe turbulence, ice storms, other air traffic in the sky around one, crew members becoming sick during the flight, delays on the ground; the list goes on and on, just as it does for other industries besides nursing.  I just watched a video about the airline captain who landed a passenger aircraft on the Hudson River after a flock of geese flew into the engines just after take off.  With all respect to Nurse Beth, I think it's quite naive to think that other industries don't deal with critical problems and distractions also.  Airline pilots are making decisions constantly.  

I certainly don't think my job is any scarier than that. But what I do think is that everyone knows that falling out of the sky means everyone is dead,  and that fact is respected accordingly.

 

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5 hours ago, Nurse Beth said:

Guilty as charged, it's me. Apparently I can't be quiet when I'm passionate. The 3 threads are related, but separate.

  • The first was an article back on December 1, 2018.
  • Next was a short poll 2 months later when she was arrested.
  • Then a short call to action with contact info for the Governor and DA.

Honestly, if she goes to court or is sentenced, I will probably write another article.

Why not just add on to one of the other similar articles?

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