New Nurse Fired After 3 months (cant find another job)

  1. Hello all!
    I am in serious need of help!
    I was fired from my first job as an RN at a local hospital. I was put on a ventilator/respiratory floor even though I told them my interest was more surgical based...

    In early June, I had a patient get out of bed and the alarm never went off. She made it into the bathroom and then fell. I had only been working since mid-march and was very overwhelmed. While filling out the incident report, I got no help from my preceptor. She told me to submit it and I accidentally left some information out of it.

    When my supervisor came in that morning she asked me about it and I explained my side of the story. She called me later to say I had to have a meeting with her and HR to discuss discipline. I was fired..

    I made the mistake of telling my supervisor I had anxiety, trying to be upfront with her... Maybe I should have known that my anxiety would be too strong to be a nurse at all...
    She met with me once and mentioned switching floors, but she never got back to me...
    I was fired in June. I have been putting applications out everywhere and cannot find anything. I am debating getting out of the nursing field altogether at this point. I have even tried to find smaller jobs just to make some money (since I cant get unemployment), but nobody wants to hire me because I'm over qualified. I cant even get reception jobs, whether its in the healthcare field or not...
    I'm running out of money, options and desire to even live at this point.
    Does anybody have any ideas? I've tried networking with professors and former class mates to no avail...

  2. Visit silentwolves profile page

    About silentwolves, ADN

    Joined: Nov '12; Posts: 23; Likes: 6
    RN; from NY , US
    Specialty: 2 year(s) of experience in Rehabilitation


  3. by   LadyFree28
    How severe is your anxiety????

    I have PTSD with exacerbations of mood disorder trait; most of it are s/a of anxiety; I even had test anxiety during nursing school.

    I was "not a good fit" out of orientation; I was going through a period of "reliving"; in hindsight I could've passed on the job and took it at another time; I excelled well, but was struggling internally.
    I am welcome to return to the facility because I was upfront; sometimes letting a job know your disabilty can be a blessing, or a curse; in my case, it is big enough of a blessing for me to return to the job; that will be when I am ready to.

    It took me four months to find another job-I am a resource nurse/supervisor in LTC; different type of stress; yet I'm doing very well per the DON; I have an excellent nursing practice and it has helped my confidence tremendously! Thy are unaware of my disability; because I felt that revealing my disability would be too much of a risk.

    The experience helped me see that although I was doing "well", I needed more interventions than counseling; I hope to be in a PTSD recovery program outpatient while working; I'm hoping that I don't risk my job while doing this; I am hoping to stay there long enough to go per diem or in house agency; I am prepared to keep my rsum fresh; my health and well being is MUCH more important to me; if I am NOT at my best, how can I excel career wise? I know I can not excel if my mental health is not in order.

    It will be up to you to give nursing another try; there are plenty of us on here that have success stories; look in this forum with many threads of support on keeping yourself healthy mentally and emotionally.

    I would try nursing at a nursing home, skilled facility, LTACH, flu shot clinics, etc. as well as speak to a licensed professional to help combat anxiety. Cast your net wide and take care of yourself. ((((HUGS)))
  4. by   HouTx
    OP is a bit confusing but it appears that the information submitted in the incident report was erroneous (information left out). If so, this would be cause for termination - falsification of documentation - in any organization that I have every worked with. There is no way to justify this. Nothing else could mitigate the seriousness of this act, particularly information was omitted in order to make OP's behavior look better. That's pretty clear evidence of unprofessional behavior.
  5. by   silentwolves
    HouTx... This was my first incident and thus first time filling out an incident report. The info I accidentally left out was put in my nurses note. I feel that my preceptor did not help me at all with filling it out. I did not leave anthing out to make me look better. It was a pure accident.

    My main point of this post though, was that I cannot find a job anywhere now! Offices, nursing homes... nothing.
    I had a horrible experience where nursing eat their young. I got no support there from the start...

    @LadyFree28... My anxiety is pretty bad. The few medications I have tried dont seem to help at all. I really want to go on disability so I can straighten myself out, but my doctor doesn't think its a good idea...
  6. by   schnookimz
    I cannot believe you were fired for that. It seems ridiculous. I mean that's the reason you sign the incident report---so that if they need more info they can just ask you.
  7. by   VivaLasViejas
    To be honest, going on disability is usually the LAST thing a person with mental health issues should do. Unless your illness is so severe that you cannot function at all---pay your bills, shop for groceries, perform your ADLs etc.---you should try to stay out of the Social Security office. It is also incredibly difficult for someone to get SSDI for a mental health problem, and if your doctor won't certify you, then essentially you have no case.

    That said.....are you seeing a general practitioner or internist, or do you have a psychiatrist? IMHO, most PCPs aren't qualified to diagnose psych issues outside of mild to moderate depression, so the involvement of a psychiatrist, psychologist, or psychiatric nurse practitioner would likely benefit you. They can also recommend therapy, which is also very useful in treating anxiety.

    FWIW, I can understand where you're coming from as I too have had bouts of crippling anxiety, one of which (in combination with a bipolar meltdown) cost me a well-paying executive nursing job earlier this year. Believe me, I feel for you, and I know you would would do so much better with proper treatment. If you don't think you can afford it, please check out your county health clinic; they often have mental health services and charge fees on a sliding scale based on income.

    Don't give up! You can still be a nurse; you just need to get control of your anxiety issues before you put yourself out there again. Wishing you the best of luck!
  8. by   sourapril
    Try another facility or area of nursing. You will find your niche.
  9. by   traumaRUs
    Per our terms of service. We can not ask nor give medical advice. Support is always welcome.
  10. by   RNlove17
    i can't imagine getting fired over not filing an incident report out correctly, especially if never trained. I process incident reports everyday and they're always filled out horrendously and I often have to call for clarification, etc... no one gets fired over them. There's a difference between submitting false reports and unknowingly leaving off infomation. Was there anything else that happened or any other reason given? Was it because of pt safety (the fall)? had you had other patients fall before?

    Don't give up. Some units/facilities just suck, maybe that was yours. You can still apply for unemployment, there's nothing from keeping you from applying and seeing if they approve it or not- employer can fight it but so what. What kind of places have you applied to? Have you tried LTC or home care? They may be more apt to hire you...
    Last edit by RNlove17 on Nov 18, '13
  11. by   silentwolves
    So this week is my Unemployment appeal hearing. I went to read my file and all that is stated in it from my former employer is that I let a patient fall, thus violating safety rules... Nothing about forgetting to mention something in a report... I just don't get it. This was my first patient to fall, I had no other incidents, close calls or anything.

    I think I may contact human resources and see about appealing my firing. I don't know if its too late or not. I got rid of employment handbooks a while ago, so I don't know the procedure...
  12. by   Zobu
    It truly sounds like the facility you were working for is a toxic environment. Nurses shouldn't be fired because a patient falls as there is no way to prevent that unless you have a nurse sitting by the bedside 24-7. A lot of bed alarms don't go off until the patients feet hit the floor and by that time its often too late if you are at the other end of the hall.That was an unfair firing based on the info you gave. If you aren't in a right to work might have a case. Personally I would NEVER disclose a disability to an employer....especially anything psychological as you will be stigmatized and possibly discriminated against.It is your ethical responsibility to assess your treatment. ...and evaluate your ability to deliver safe and effective nursing care. Keep your chin up...don't let this break your confidence. Keep trying to find your place. I worked in a hospital for several years where the community of nurses was very "high school"...politics were very toxic. I'm really enjoying my work in Home Health.
  13. by   utadahikaru
    Dude, lots of people have a rough start in nursing. It can be from any number of things, some you can control, others you can't. Relocate if that's what it takes to get a job. Pray, believe in yourself, don't give up just because others don't believe in you.
  14. by   kaylee.
    I know this post is a little old...but wow...

    Your patient was a fall risk, you had them with a bed alarm, which is your main secondary prevention, but they fell anyways and the alarm failed to you filled out the incident report.

    i have gotten extensive help on these reports esp in the beginning, and have always had the opportunity to talk to the manager to add things or clarify...

    So basically your facility believes that one should be axed if an error occurs even if they follow protocol?

    Maybe the alarm was out of position, or the outlet died...i guess if it was broken from the start one should make sure its functioning, and replace it. This last thing would be similar a failure to activate or use a bed alarm...a failure to follow safety protocol...

    but still, this happens to the best nurses, an oversight, misjudgement, or an error...nurses should not be fired bc they are human.

    I'm sorry this happened...i would definitely investigate more into the reasoning for firing you.