What's up with RNs who refuse to scrub? - page 4

This trend, at least in the Western states, is starting to irritate me more and more, the more I see it. I have been an OR nurse for over 20 years; scrub and circulate all areas; have done all kinds... Read More

  1. by   webbiedebbie
    Perhaps, "scrubbing" should be taught in nursing schools to alleviate the fear of it. However, I too, get claustrophobic in the sterile environment. I have to move around (circulate) and concentrate on other things to keep me focused.

    Question, are more hospitals doing C-sections with OR staff now? Prepping my labor patient, circulating the section, and recovering the patient wears me out! The hospital where I work uses OR staff during the day and L&D staff at night.
  2. by   shodobe
    We trained the L&D staff to do their own C/S when it became a problem with the schedule. The OB guys wanted to do their sections when they wanted to do them no matter what the schedule was like. The general surgeons hated to be bumped for a failure to progress and loved it when they went down the hall. After 10 years of doing sections if the hospital ever thought of giving back the privledge of doing sections in the OR, I wouldn't hesitate to tell them what they could really do with them! There would be a revolt and mass exodus of OR nurses. Our problem now is, they can always find nurses and the time to do their sections in their department but are too busy at times to do the Tubals. I think a hospital that still does sections in the OR is living too much in the past. Just my two cents worth, Mike
  3. by   KarenHalse
    Hey, I would like to reply to this one...I am an RN with 28 yrs varied experience. I worked OR about 10 yrs ago and as alot of nurses I got purely fed up with the BS and left... Now, I have decided I wanted to do OR again and have been back about 3 yrs and I will be staying this time.
    When I started OR the RN's were not taught to scrub. It was too easy to bring someone in from the local hamburger joint, teach them to scrub, and it was alot cheaper. This was in the Middle of Dixie, if that means anything.
    Now, that I am among the majority of nurses that will be retiring sooner than later, I find it too hard to stand in one position for hours for at a time to scrub. It is very hard on my legs and back.
    And there still is no one knocking on my door trying to teach me to scrub either.
    Now, just because one does not scrub does not mean they cannot be a good OR nurse. If you are attentive to what is going on in the "field" you can anticipate the needs of the team...this is something that too can be learned. You DON"T have to scrub to learn procedures, it only makes it easier.
    I have worked with many OR scrub techs and RN's that think all they have to do is walk into the room after it is opened up and set up. The attitude that the "table" is their only responsibility is pure BS. This is pure lazyness that has been allowed to happen by management. The equipment, supplies, as well as the patient are the responsibility of the "team"not just the circulator.
    I do get angry with the scrub (Rn or Tech) when they are scrubbed and say "oh, I need this or that" and you are busy with the pt., or when their is an equipment problem and they look at you like it is your problem...etc. If they have helped me with the room and equipment, it is not so bad but the lazyness has to stop.
  4. by   POPRN
    I applaude you KarenHalse!!!! I too am an OR nurse and live in Dixie. Scrub techs outnumber the RN's 2:1 here. so of course the RN's rarely scrub. I also agree that management here allow the scrubs to be lazy. I am tired of running and doing what they are supposed to do. Your post mirrored my thoughts exactly.
  5. by   KarenHalse
    Well POPRN, I am glad to hear someone else feels like I do. I have started giving them notice by asking where were you when we opened, did you check the case before we started, this sort of thing. I do this a couple of times and then the next opportunity I say to them, what size gloves do you wear and I will open you a gown...this does make them realize that I am not going to put up with much of it. There are times when it cannot be helped but on a day to day basis..this ole girl is been down that road too many times!
    I enjoy OR better now than I did a few years back. I think the shortage is helping us some. I find management is more receptive to listening when we talk now. I don't whine or complain about unimportant issues.
    The main thing I know is now that I travel (just started last year), I only have to be here for a short amount of time. I can leave this miserable place and go to another one that might be a little more tolerable for better money and great places to explore (our country)...
  6. by   spineCNOR
    on the issue of scrub techs "slacking"--I have worked with many techs who, of course, have never circulated, and think that what they do is so much harder than what the circulators do, and so much more important to the case. I even had a tech tell me one "scrubbing is SO much harder than circulating".
    After working in an OR where I scrub more than I circulate I know that is just not true! Yes, some cases involve more work for the scrub, some involve more work for the circulator. I think these techs think nothing of not putting any thought into getting the case ready because all the circulator does is sit!
    Circulating is more thankless- I don't think it is as interesting, and the time tends to drag more.

    I do not mean in any way to bash techs--I have worked with some very good, very knowlegable techs who were strong team players, and I've worked with some nurses who weren't team players! I just think the team work goes better if all members of the team understand and respect the job that other people on the team are doing.
  7. by   KarenHalse
    I agree with you and I am not into bashing anyone. That is just my point. We all have a job to do and we need to be functioning as a team. I think scrubbing would be very boring. Thanks for the reply.
  8. by   CVnurse08
    I am not a nurse yet and totally clueless on this subject so can someone please answer my silly question of what exactly is "scrubbing" ?? Thanks a lot for you all's help.
  9. by   POPRN
    No I am not bashing the techs. they are needed and some of them are very good at the team concept. but most of them just do what they have to do to get by. and then the surgeon THANKS them for all their hard work....the surgeon doesn't have a clue that I, the circle did all the opening and gathering of the supplies then interviewed the patient and made sure all the permits and labs etc... were in order. and NO I don't expect a thank you for doing my job...I hear at work that some of the nurses aren't team players, but I rarely get to work with another nurse. usually there are 2 tech and 1 RN to a room. If both techs aren't needed then one is supposed to help the RN. While I am getting the patient, the 2nd tech counts then usually goes on their break until the end of the case. Then they come back and give the other tech a break...that is what they call helping the RN!!!!!!!! sorry if I offend someone...
    Please forgive me
  10. by   yoga crna
    An RN who can both scrub and circulate is more marketable and in the long run that could be an advantage. Even though I am a CRNA, I am also the manager of an office surgery center. I will only hire RNs (no techs), because I want someone who can scrub, circulate and recover. The surgeon taught the ones who didn't know how, to scrub. They can get work any where and to a person is thankful that they can scrub.

    More knowledge and skills is always an advantage.
  11. by   mother/babyRN
    I work in a community hospital with a skeleton staff. I work in OB...There are not enough of us to scrub. And, if we had the staff, I would expect the hospital to pay for me to go to an accredited scrub tech program to do it....I am not against it, but one person cannot scrub, circulate, catch a baby, hope it is ok, intervene if it isn't, recover the section AND take care of labor people , post partum people and babies. Period....But, that is just my opinion. If one works in the OR, I thought one had to scrub and circulate. Just goes to show you how uniformed I have been...
    I wouldn't personally think scrubbing is fun because I hate to gown up and be behind a mask...And kudos and admiration to you for doing it for hours and daily. That is not something I personally would enjoy, but I think that it is great that you do..To each his or her own I guess...
  12. by   KarenHalse
    Yoga crna, I appreciate your view point but that is very typical of Out patient surgery. I have worked both and I do prefer a general OR. From the circulator viewpoint, the main negative to a regular OR is the call. On the other hand, in outpatient setting, the circulator work is much harder. Circulatating is the same, just many more surgeries, much more paperwork in a lesser amount of time. It would be better to be a scrub in the outpatient setting. This of course has been my own experience. Not to mention the pay is pretty poor in Outpatient settings.
    There is not a question that scrubbing and circulating would be easier to sell but scrubbing is definitely not as interesting to me. I would feel once you see a surgery then I would be ready to do something else. With circulating, there is always a challenge. I seldom sit on the job...I do like to keep my OR room cleaned up, have my paperwork complete as much as possible, while keeping an ear to the field. Always thinking about the next one coming into my room...I like to be as prepared as much as possible. Just differences of opinion.
  13. by   carcha
    very interesting this discussion!. having worked in north america and europe i too see this trend of some rns not scrubbing, however mostly head nurses who " manage" the room while the rns scrub and circulate. where i work the rns scrub, circulate, and assist in preparing the anaesthetic equipment for the anaesthetist, and personally i find having skills in all these areas very challanging indeed. if i may just point out i remember years ago when the rns were left circulating all the time while the head nurses scrubbed for all the major cases. i found this annoying as i felt my professional needs were neglected. so im all for this new arrangment. however can i ask, can an rn refuse legally to scrub and do their contract allow them to do so?. love this site.