Is The "Doctor-Nurse" Game Still Being Played? - page 2

The doctor-nurse game first described 40 years ago is still relevant to modern nursing, despite many changes to the profession. Is nursing partly to blame?... Read More

  1. by   Sanuk
    It's not exactly the "game" the article referred to, but there are definitely some doctors I've worked with that would purposefully NOT do something if you suggested it, and vice versa. We very quickly learned to work around that but it was ridiculous that we had to perpetuate a farce.
  2. by   CCRNDiva
    Quote from msn10
    That is an interesting dynamic. You wonder if they feel they have to be better than the males and they themselves try to become the alpha males!!!!! Although when women gain leadership positions, and then they become assertive are labled the bi***es. Although, sometimes they do definitely earn that name.
    I thought it was interesting too. I've been told that I'm somewhat intimidating by women because I'm too smart, whatever that means. People also think I'm still in my 20s. It really bothered me at first until a friend of mine told me not to worry about it because it was their issue, not mine.

    Maybe it's a combination of both. Female docs are probably used to being the smartest women in the room and a nurse knowing something they don't know may throw them off of their game. Some people still assume if you're smart enough you would have chosen to become a physician instead of nurse (I still get asked why I haven't applied to med school, usually by nurses). Thankfully, most of the doctors I work with appreciate smart nurses and realize we are an asset, not a threat.
  3. by   nyemt2005
    Does the Doctor-Nurse game change when the nurse is a male?
  4. by   Jack245
    Quote from threelittlebirds
    Some nursing instructors explicitly tell their students that their femininity is an important asset to be used when relating to physicians (703)
    That might be a problem for me...haha
  5. by   elkpark
    Rest assured, the game is still being played. I ran into an unexpected example of it just yesterday (I mean literally yesterday).
  6. by   JenniferSews
    There is one doc who rounds our facility for whom the game is still in force. If you don't approach him correctly he will literally hold up his hand and stop you from continueing. He ripped my head off a few weeks ago because I called to notify him of a potentially life threatening drug interaction. Instead of granting my simple request to change one of the drugs, he yelled at me that he had already done that the other day and what was wrong with me for not seeing his order. Of course there was no such order from him. But I had the nerve to appear as a competent nurse and not defer to him correctly.

    Fortunately most of the doctors I come in contact with will listen and we don't have to do any BS ploy to get them to do their job.
  7. by   CCRNDiva
    I've also heard from RNs who work other floors that the docs treat ICU nurses with a higher level of respect than the nurses on the floors. I was telling a friend about how much I loved working with one our hospitalists and she told me that everyone was scared of him upstairs and called him a beast. I couldn't believe it!! This doc would round on his pts in the unit during the night, respond to codes (even though he wasn't required to) and ended every line of his orders with "please". So one day I told him that I heard everybody was scared of him upstairs. He looks at me and says, "I'm not mean, I just don't have tolerance for stupidity". My mouth hit the floor. I must admit that he was one of those docs who would call his fellow docs on their stupidity (like giving fluid boluses and then lasix repeatedly).

    Another RN told me that docs treat you better when you work for them, ie nephrologists and their HD RNs. She said they were complete jerks when she worked the floor but treat her as a valued colleague since started working for them. Anyways, I think the doc/RN game does have something to do with where you work and how they perceive your level of knowledge and skill.
  8. by   astn
    Quote from nyemt2005
    Does the Doctor-Nurse game change when the nurse is a male?
    The "game" is part of the nurse-physician relationship. You start off not knowing very much, and you have to rely on them to make the decisions. By the time you know enough to be an asset, you've already been conditioned to act in that manner. At the same time, due to your experience, you also know who wants your opinion and who doesn't, and tend to react appropriately (and "play the game"). It's just part of the career field, and everyone is going to play on a regular basis, irregardless of age, sex, or personality.

    That said, as a man, it will be easier to deal with the (more difficult) physicians. Most of the time, they expect more assertiveness from a man, may be more willing to entertain your suggestions (though I wouldn't count on it), and are less likely to "abuse" you. In my case, physicians also have less tendency to play "Quin es ms macho?" with the 6'0" 280# biker-looking nurse, then they might with your average female nurse (much less the doe-eyed BSN grads). I also tend to be friends with the physicians I work with more then some others might, part of which is almost definitely sex-linked.

    Like "The Wire" says: "The game is the game."
  9. by   Leeanniepooh
    The nurse/doctor game definitely goes on. Once I figured out I was being railroaded at a facility. I got the you know what out of there. Try and get an order, only to have the "God" say no and a whole lot of other B.S. My advice: If you don't like the doctor you're working with, look for another, there's plenty out there.....