sleeping anesthesiologist anyone????

  1. Have any of you had to deal with an anesthesiologist that keeps falling asleep? What did you do? What if no one will listen? Who is going to take the blame if something happens? Will the nurses or OR manager or administration?
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    About Cricket1

    Joined: Oct '06; Posts: 3

    5 Comments

  3. by   heartICU
    Quote from Cricket1
    Have any of you had to deal with an anesthesiologist that keeps falling asleep? What did you do? What if no one will listen? Who is going to take the blame if something happens? Will the nurses or OR manager or administration?
    If something happens due to anesthesiologist lack of vigilance, then it will be his/her fault. They have their own license, and are responsible for their own actions, or lack thereof.
  4. by   Marie_LPN, RN
    Quote from Cricket1
    Have any of you had to deal with an anesthesiologist that keeps falling asleep? What did you do? What if no one will listen? Who is going to take the blame if something happens? Will the nurses or OR manager or administration?
    We dealt with one. A surgeon reported him before the nurses got to. His MAIN complain though was that the MDA's SNORING was disruptive to his cases (nevermind pt. wellbeing).

    That MDA is no longer at our facility.
  5. by   subee
    Quote from heartICU
    If something happens due to anesthesiologist lack of vigilance, then it will be his/her fault. They have their own license, and are responsible for their own actions, or lack thereof.
    And the other staff that observed this behavior but didn't report it gets off scott free? Don't think so. Everyone in the room will be sued and elminated only after culpability cannot be proven. I do not think this is the case here. He needs to be reported to the medical board after a drug screen.
  6. by   heartICU
    Quote from subee
    And the other staff that observed this behavior but didn't report it gets off scott free? Don't think so. Everyone in the room will be sued and elminated only after culpability cannot be proven. I do not think this is the case here. He needs to be reported to the medical board after a drug screen.
    Sounded like the OP did report it, s/he stated that "what if no one will listen?" And of course, everyone can get sued. My point was, I can't see how the nurse could have any responsibility as to what the anesthesiologist does or does not do. All s/he can do is make sure the appropriate people are made aware of the situation.

    As far as I can see, the only person who would have some of the responsibility could be the surgeon, who chooses to continue to operate while s/he has been made aware that the anesthesiologist is sleeping and not monitoring his/her patient.

    And of course, you should most definitely report him to hospital administration/medical board/whatever you see fit.
  7. by   elcue
    I had this problem with a resident when I worked in a teaching hospital. Reported him to the anesthesia dept chair.
    In private practice, the reporting chain I'd follow would be the OR supervisor, anesthesia chief and/or the OR medical director, then if no results the hospital's medical director. And keep written records of these actions.

    I believe the OR nurse would share legal culpability if anything bad happened because of this and (s)he had not taken steps to report it.

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