Resident rights: Using/not using gait belt?

by IdahoThrilla IdahoThrilla (New) New

I am currently a CNA student who just finished 3 days of clinicals this week. Didn't go so well, on day two, my partner and I was transfering a resident to use the bathroom, and I went explained to them that I was going to first put on the gait belt before they got up out of the chair they were in, but they insisted on not wearing it. On day one my instructor asked the question "who is the boss?" I said the nurse?...the doctor?...She said "No, the resident is the boss, if the resident doesnt want to eat than the riesident has the right not to eat." So this was my logical reasoning behind not using the gait belt in this situation. So the resident got up used a walker to the bathroom, as I walked with her close by. My teacher came up to me half way and told me I had to use the gait belt regardless of the patients request. At the end of the the night, my teach took me and my partner aside and explained to us how we f**up big time because of us not using the gait belt that one time. She was also ****** because she said we spent to much time with a particular resident, instead of moving on to another one, and the third thing she said that ****** her off was she said she feels that she has to spoon feed us (me and my partner) on what duties to perform. She then went on to say that if there was a list of people to hire and everyone on that list needed to be hired and me and my partner was on that list, she would still not hire us. She said that she would never have us take care of her family if they were in such a position All this along with her cussing and so fourth, her lips were quivering as if she was in a panic state. She said that she can't see in way that she can trust us from now on. Then she said we could still take the exams, and finish up clinicals but shes still not going to allow us to pass. All this on my second night of clinicals as a CNA student, never before have I ever worked in this type of job environment in my life. I don't mind being rebuked and corrected so I can learn from my mistakes and become better at my abilities, but I made a couple errors and shes basically expelling me and my partner. She said we could take the class again but we'd have to pay the money ($1500). Couldn't sleep that night. Day 3 of clinicals went very smooth for my partner and I, and my partner asked my teacher if everything's cool, and my teacher said "yeah today went good, but it should have been that good since day 1, your still failing"

So that's the background behind a question I want to ask for whoever can give me some advice, I paid $1500 for this lady to make me into a bad-ass CNA and instead of correcting me and filling me in on where I have a lack of understanding, she shoots me and my partner down, and crushes us. The only reason I let her walk all over me and my partner is because it doesn't make any sense for someone to just expell me for my misunderstanding on not using a F***ing gait belt, or spending a little extra time caring for a resident, or asking my teacher if theres any particular task she would like for me to do (in which she calls "spoon feeding". I still can wrap my mind around being expelled down this road for situations in which I'm just learning from. I'm going to take my exams and pass them, but if for some reason she doesn't allow me to be certified, then what? I mean, I went into clinicals considering it as a time to put the book and the practicing skills to the actual field, so that we can come out having experience in dealing with real people using what we learned. I didn't think clinicals held a perfection policy. Am I wrong about this? If I am ok than, but if i'm not and this lady is going to keep my money, and not allow me to pass regardless of my high test scores, what do I do than? Oh yeah, and my initial question (sorry) , Does a resident have the right to refuse a gait belt when being transferred?



20 Posts

I'm sorry that I don't have any advice or answer for you, but I just wanted to share that I am upset and frustrated and feeling your emotions with you. What you went through sounds awful :\



1,001 Posts

I can not imagine this. I can not believe that she would fail you on your entire class for one mistake. You are there to learn, and mistakes do happen. It was maybe dangerous for you not to have the gait belt on her, and she could have fallen, so I understand why you instructor would have been upset thinking about what could have been. But she is there to teach you, and ok lesson learned please use gait belt at all time. It isn't like you abuses the resident or neglect them to cause her to fail you.

Is there someone higher up in ranking that you could talk to. I can not believe that after paying this kind of money which really seems outrageous to me to spend that much on CNA classes in the first place, that you would fail for one mistake.

All the advise I have for you sit down with her in a private area, and explain to her why you miss understood about the residents rights, and to please reconsider. Tell her how much this means to you and say that you understand that you made a mistake, and that you have learned to never do it again and see what she says. I hope things can work out for you.

As for you question, someone can correct me if I am wrong, but I think the residents rights have things to do with everything OTHER THEN SAFTY ISSUES. They have the right to refuse to eat. They have the right to say what clothes they want to wear, or not to brush their teeth. But anything that has to do with their safty I do not think they can refuse it.



Specializes in Critical Care. Has 2 years experience. 140 Posts

This...just...amazes me. :o I tried to have the scenario play through my head while reading this and I would be effn ****** if she told me that. You paid the shouldn't have to be failed because of not using the gait belt!

When I went through clinicals, I had many of the CNAs not use them per request of the patients. If they were in high risk of falling...we would then always put the belt. If we knew the background of the patient and they were cleared by the nurse, we didn't.

Is there anyone you can peak to thats above her?... That grinds my gears >:/



467 Posts

Wow. Sounds to me as if this instructor has a major power trip. I dealt with an instructor just like that during my "aging adult" clinicals in nursing school. As I was reading your scenario, I kept seeing my old instructor's face and how she enjoyed degrading me..all because of a personality conflict. She said she was going to do everything in her power to fail me..and this was my last semester. Fortunately, she was not able to fail me based on her reasons. I went to the board of education and filed a complaint on her.

Hopefully there is someone above her that you can talk to. This is so not fair.

Good luck & let us know how it goes.

Wow... I am so sorry you went through this. Someone else can correct me if I'm wrong, because its been a while since I did my clinical a, but are we even allowed to transfer by ourselves during clinicals? I seem to vaguely remember that, for insurance reasons. We had to have a CNA with us or instructor but not alone. If I were you, I would talk to your state's Dept of public health, or whoever is in charge of certifications for cna's. You definitely need guidance. Wish I could help. Big hugs



83 Posts

Wow, 1500$ on a CNA class! That sounds crazy. In the area I live in CNAs don't make enough to spend that kind of money on a class. I agree with some of the previous posters that I would go to someone over her head with the partner you were with and explain what happened. I know in the state I live in you can take the CNA test without passing a class. So if she does fail you that might help you instead of paying another 1500$.

Straight No Chaser, LPN

Specializes in Sub-Acute. Has 6 years experience. 1 Article; 2,144 Posts

Woah. Your professor sounds extremely unprofessional. i would go to the school and ask to speak to someone. She has no right to tell you you aren't going to pass if you have grades to back it up......

As far as not using the gait belt, technically they do have the right to refuse, (if they are alert and oriented) but you also have the right to inform them you aren't able to help them transfer unless they wear it. Usually, you can convince them to comply, its all in the way you approach it, which you will learn. Whenever this happens to me I explain that it is hospital protocol, all patients must be wearing a gait belt. Sometimes I laugh it off with them and say something like "I will lose my job if anything happens to you and you aren't wearing this. Its for your safety to help me help you keep your balance" If they still refuse I go get the nurse and let her/him deal with it. they usually say the same thing and the patient complies. Occasionally they still refuse and the nurse documents it and i go on to transfer them without it.

As far as what happened to you in clinical, you need to ask your professor to help you become the kind of CNA she would stand behind and ask her what you can do to make that happen. Don't defend yourself so much as apologize and ask how to get better. If she is still making you feel as though you are hopeless you should talk to an adviser or someone who can give you advise on how to proceed next.

I am sorry you went through this. All new CNA's make mistakes and it is part of the learning process. It is extremely nerve wracking to be interacting with other people in the intimate ways we do. It takes a lot of getting used to. Keep your head up and keep trying to learn all that you can.



159 Posts

I'm sorry I don't have much to say....I'm absolutely speachless. Go over her head. If you had to pay, clearly it was through a school that probably has a supervisor or owner or SOMEONE you can complain to.



51 Posts

If the question were on the state CNA exam...Do u use the gait belt even if the resident refuses it? Your answer would be "yes".

The reason being it's a safety issue. If it says on the residents care plan that they can refuse use of gait belt (or something to that effect), than not using it would be ok. otherwise use it. Usually explaining to the resident that you are required to use it for both their safety and yours...and that you have no control over not using it, it is usually enough to get the resident to comply. If they still don't, talk to the nurse about it to cover your butt.

elprup, BSN, RN

Has 2 years experience. 1,005 Posts

I wonder how many other students have had similar situations with this instructor? Very sad indeed that many of us have had similar things happen during school and in our jobs.