I work on a labor/delivery/antepartum/postpartum unit (approx. 1600 deliveries a year). Our hospital administration is trying to get our charge nurses to take on the added responsibility of being charge over our small Pediatrics unit. We are together on adamantly opposing this plan. We have no competencies or expertise in Pediatrics. All the literature we can dredge up states that a charge nurse has clinical competencies or is somewhat of an "expert" in their clinical area and act as resource to those they oversee--which, for us would certainly NOT be the case! Apparently, they want to save a buck--since they pay a whopping $2/hr. more to charge nurses.I cannot believe this is a typical expectation in hospitals. Have any of you heard of this being initiated in hospitals? The public health code and ANA's code for nurses states that RN's can only delegate that for which they have competency--this comprises their "scope of practice".. Am I reading this right? Can you believe our own legal dept. thinks that just because I am an RN I can delegate virtually anything to another RN. Man, I feel godlike now! HA! Just trying to lighten it up. Let me know what you all think please, we have a meeting to "discuss" this plan with administration in a couple days--Thanks-SMO
Sep 19, '00
I would say that those two areas are like apples and oranges although the common denominator is young people. I do not get the feeling that being able to deliver and administer to newborns prepares one to take care of all children. The hospital I work at does not even require PALS of the ICU nurses which take care of the odd child (we have no pedi ICU), but then again they do not require ACLS either. Still that is,I think, a very dangerous gamble when you are talking about a life entrusted to your license.
Oct 2, '00
I believe the Joint Commission requires current competency validation that is age specific.
You might get information to help you at www.jcaho.org
It is clearly unsafe to me. You explained it very well.
[This message has been edited by spacenurse (edited October 16, 2000).]