Jump to content

Possible Friction with Senior Psych Techs

Psychiatric   (2,922 Views 10 Comments)
by Nurse<3 Nurse<3 (New Member) New Member

Nurse<3 has 1 years experience and specializes in Mental Health, Emergency.

461 Profile Views; 2 Posts

advertisement

Hi everyone! So I started working at a State Hospital in California as an RN, and I'd like some input regarding SPTs. On the unit we will obviously be working closely as a team, and I look forward to working together/having each others' backs. However, I was told by one newly hired SPT that they supervise/are in charge of the RNs...now I understand psych techs are starting to get more responsibilities, but I know that RNs don't answer to senior psych techs (just to make perfectly sure, I double checked with other RNs at the facility). Everyone is great there, but I am a little peeved about this SPT's attitude, and I don't think I will react very nicely if he acts like he can order me around or evaluate my work.

I really don't mean to sound bratty, but I am concerned with defending my role as an RN, and would like advice as to how to deal with any friction that may occur! Thanks so much!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

161 Posts; 4,180 Profile Views

Sounds like the SPT is out of line. Check with your supervisor or union rep.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

14 Posts; 903 Profile Views

Some times it's better to just let people who want to be in charge "be in charge" so the next time you have a combative patient who needs to be put in 4points make she the SPT is right there with you "guiding" you. I would ask him to show you how it's done lol I bet he/ she would cool their jets.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

MrChicagoRN has 30 years experience as a RN and specializes in Leadership, Psych, HomeCare, Amb. Care.

2,589 Posts; 28,343 Profile Views

Your state mental health code is probably quite clear as to who is in charge.

For example, in Illinois the MHT cannot order seclusion, restraints, or make a decision regarding medications. It's the RN call, who will also be held responsible if the tech is allowed to exceed their legal authority and something bad happens.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Nurse<3 has 1 years experience and specializes in Mental Health, Emergency.

2 Posts; 461 Profile Views

Some times it's better to just let people who want to be in charge "be in charge" so the next time you have a combative patient who needs to be put in 4points make she the SPT is right there with you "guiding" you. I would ask him to show you how it's done lol I bet he/ she would cool their jets.

Haha good point, I think this is the route I will go for now, as I definitely don't want to be on this guy's bad side and would rather be part of a harmonious team :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

1 Post; 345 Profile Views

Senior psych techs in dsh , are in charge during their shift on their unit. In a psych setting according to the pt law, PTs are in charge. A shift lead is a shift lead. You could be a s RN , and in that case you are in charge...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Mandychelle79 has 2 years experience as a ASN, RN and specializes in Psych.

771 Posts; 9,192 Profile Views

Your state mental health code is probably quite clear as to who is in charge.

For example, in Illinois the MHT cannot order seclusion, restraints, or make a decision regarding medications. It's the RN call, who will also be held responsible if the tech is allowed to exceed their legal authority and something bad happens.

i know this is a zombie post but just seen this since somebody awakened the post. My staff that I work with is a team. Can my mhts order restraints/medications of course not. If they look at me and say hey call doc for an order for bob or hey open up seclusion we are going to need it for sue, you best believe I trust their assessment of the situation. I was a newbie nurse, working with 2 sr techs, I learned a ton from them.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Retired APRN has 35 years experience as a MSN, RN, APRN and specializes in Psychiatry, Mental Health.

1 Article; 202 Posts; 7,022 Profile Views

I worked at a California state hospital for years, and the techs were my greatest allies and my worst PITAs.

Is your problem with just the one particular SPT? It's a tough situation, but I think I would wait for the situation to come up when he or she tried to give me an order or otherwise insist on being my supervisor, I would say that maybe that was the case in their last facility, but here it's the RN who supervises. If they argue (and they probably will), just tell them to check with someone in the DON's office. You can sweeten the bitter medicine by honestly telling them that you are eager to learn from them in [name some situation in which that person excels].

Good luck.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

993 Posts; 15,832 Profile Views

In my hospital, there is a charge MT milieu therapist and a charge nurse. The charge MT is theoretically in charge of all mts and aides, but honestly the do exactly the same job as us except they get an hour off the floor for paper work. But They work under the direction of all the RNs, not just the charge nurse.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

35 Posts; 2,898 Profile Views

I am an RN at DSH and this is not the case where I work. The SPT's are definitely in charge of the unit and other psych techs but not the nurse. The nurse is the highest medical on the unit when the physician is not there....that is why the RN signs a clinical review form accepting responsibility at the beginning of each shift. If the nurse is not working treatment and is "on the floor" with other floor staff, than administratively, the shift lead/psych tech does give the nurse work direction but never for medical. That is not even possible based on the RN license vs. the PT license. Whenever a nurse is using her license to be an RN, the delegation regarding clinical oversite is the RN. An example, from my experience, is when I am the only RN on the unit and get asked to escort a patient or pick someone up at the visiting center. That would be a problem if I left the unit, there was no RN and a medical incident possibly resulting in death. The management would ask me why wasn't I on the unit. The response: "because my shift lead asked me to leave to go pick someone up from the visiting center" would not work. I'm supposed to know better, know my license, and know what my facility expects. I run into this often because the psych techs don't have a full grasp or understanding of the nurses position or license. I have to explain to them why I can't do some of the things they ask me to. There is never an argument.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Recently Browsing 0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×