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Rude doctors

Emergency   (1,685 Views | 10 Replies)

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Hello everyone,

I am sure we all have experienced this a time or two working in a busy emergency department.  I have worked er for awhile now and get along well with all the doctors save for one.  This person in particular is unpopular because of her behavior.  Lately, however it seems her ways have become magnified.  She is SO RUDE and in the past she would vent frustration at me and then apologize later.  In fact, she has done this multiple times.  I have never had any other provider treat me this way, just her.  It is really frustrating and I am thinking about reporting her, but I am not really sure how.  I am also scared she will retaliate against me and may even be successful at doing so.  One event that really irked me was when I was helping in the trauma bay and was incredibly busy and a bit stressed.  She starts demanding I go find a scribe for her and I tell her when I am finished with my current task I will go find one (which was more kind than she deserved) she literally just stared at me until I finished my task when she could have gotten a scribe or called one herself.  Another occasion she yelled at me for taking too long to give a patient Ibuprofen (it had been 25 minutes since ordered, given at 30).  She is also treating other staff this way and it is very frustrating.  I dont know what to do.  I just hate working with her.  Should I pull her aside and talk to her or just report her.  I want to smooth thing over not kick the hornets nest.  Personally though I feel her attitude is a big problem and she is the kind of person who thinks nurses are beneath her and she can just kick them around when she is frustrated.  What do I do?  I seriously feel like the next time she says "im sorry" im going to say "yeah, heard that before." then I'll really get into trouble.  UGH!

Edited by SnickerDoodle_RN

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13 Followers; 4,056 Posts; 31,349 Profile Views

People behave this way when they know it will be tolerated. It's almost guaranteed that she does not treat every one of the ED nurses this way; she knows when to temper herself and when she can get away with it. She knows that you hate the idea of even a minor confrontation and will stress yourself in order to avoid having to assert yourself.

This is a matter of being pleasantly assertive. Assertiveness is not: aggressiveness, sarcasm, being argumentative, mean retorts, or trying to pacify her.

Not being pleasantly assertive is enabling her behavior.

Pleasant/low-key assertiveness is a state of mind and emotion that recognizes that X thing (whatever little issue she has become unglued about) is not about you, and therefore you are free to proceed very neutrally; in a pleasant, matter-of-fact manner.

If X is the scribe issue: In a pleasant/friendly manner state, "Oh! That number should be in your phone. I can help you find it in just a second..." This achieves the goal of being pleasantly assertive and offering a solution, but not performing her unreasonable demand and not giving any indication that you are willing to perform the unreasonable demand or are going to do it 2, 5, or 10 minutes from now--but that instead, something different is going to happen.

If X is the Motrin issue: Let her belly-ache. If she was just grumbling about it into the atmosphere, pretend you didn't hear. If she approaches you and is pointedly complaining about it, keep moving and pleasantly state, "I was with another patient but it's next on my list." Don't stand there to give her an audience.

Basically don't do what she wants you to do. Be calm, be neutral and pleasant, realize that X is not about you.

Look around your ED. I'm certain there are people she doesn't treat this way. Learn from them--although for your own happiness I wouldn't pattern myself after the ones whom she leaves alone because they are just as inappropriate as she is...they are quite often miserable themselves, and you don't need a different kind of misery any more than you need your present problem.

👍🏽

Edited by JKL33

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TuxnadoDO specializes in Emergency medicine.

68 Posts; 1,171 Profile Views

As a female ER physician, I would much prefer if a nurse pulled me aside when it wasn't busy and calmly/politely told me how my behavior made her feel. Communicate with her before resorting to tactics like being snarky or reporting her. 

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13 Followers; 4,056 Posts; 31,349 Profile Views

3 hours ago, TuxnadoDO said:

As a female ER physician, I would much prefer if a nurse pulled me aside when it wasn't busy and calmly/politely told me how my behavior made her feel. Communicate with her before resorting to tactics like being snarky or reporting her. 

Agree with this and in most other situations it would have been my advice, but the elements involved in the scribe incident make it sort of beyond the pale. I'm happy to try to make the physician's job easier when I can, as a courtesy. But that would never involve leaving a trauma because someone has chosen to throw a tantrum instead of dialing their phone or pulling out a pen and paper.

The stare-down was utterly 6th-grade-mean-girl. Such people are not unaware of how it may make other people feel. They are actively trying to make people feel that way.

Your tip is okay for those who are maybe a little high-strung when stressed or are slightly brusque and unaware of how they sound.

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tridil2000 has 33 years experience as a MSN, RN.

642 Posts; 6,608 Profile Views

1. attempt to discuss behaviors directly and be prepared to use examples and the words "unacceptable" and "unprofessional."

2. Follow through that day with consistent assertiveness. Try to note witnesses. Say, " I believed we spoke about things like this earlier."

3. Report her first to your manager and tell your manager you expect a response, even if it means having a meeting together with her present.

We are not there to be of service to each other, we ALL serve THE PATIENT. We support each other in that goal. Once that is perfectly clear to everyone on the team, the workplace, and outcomes, improve.

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amoLucia specializes in LTC.

5,451 Posts; 46,580 Profile Views

2 hours ago, tridil2000 said:

We are not there to be of service to each other, we ALL serve THE PATIENT. We support each other in that goal. Once that is perfectly clear to everyone on the team, the workplace, and outcomes, improve.

I like this. Maybe it should be hung in a frame on every workplace unit.

It really is the truth!

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canoehead has 30 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in ER.

2 Followers; 6,679 Posts; 49,573 Profile Views

When I'm getting more requests than I can possibly finish, or when they ask me for something they can do themselves and I don't have time to "discuss" it, I say "I'll put that on my to-do list." It's on the list, but it will keep getting prioritized with all my other responsibilities. FYI, a few nice words can move things on the list up a bit, but a sour look will slow me down.

Patients get what they need regardless, but you need a form, printed out? It's on my list, when I get a chance.

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At the facility I work out in Cincinnatti we have a doc like that he often curses at the nurses

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Fran L. LeMay has 23 years experience as a LPN, EMT-I and specializes in LTC.

9 Posts; 356 Profile Views

I had a doc like that. I was his patient for 1 very long years. I got worse over time, because he outright told me many times he doesn't believe me. I renamed him Dr Fester before I fired him, and I still have the nicest most proficient doctor who I nicknamed Dr. Professional. What an absolute blessing he is.😇

 

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While most of the physicians we work with are good people, lets not pretend there aren't some who are abusive. Statistics show that there is a significantly higher incidence of ER physicians and surgeons being SOCIOPATHS when compared to the general population. It is therefore likely, that if you have been working ER or surgery units for several years, the chances are high that you have come across one of these mentally abnormal physicians. Working the ER setting I am currently dealing with a physician who lied to a patient and intentionally attempted to make me look like a narcotic thief before the patient and lied to her about me not reporting her concerns to him. He got caught recently lying and the patient who was a nurse unbeknownst to him called him out on several things he lied to her and her primary physician whom he phoned about. She reported him to the House Supervisor for lying on me her nurse, lying to her, lying to her primary care physician, overhearing him call her something inappropriate, and something rather serious which I can not comment on here among a host of other issues. He mistakenly assumed I was some sort of push over because I am polite and nice, but boy did he find out the hard way that I am the wrong nurse to try some manipulative, calculating, foul tactics out on. He was trying to intimidate me into never sending him EPIC messages but to tell him in person. He was upset that the messages I sent to him exposed his lying. He denied knowing certain things but forgot that EPIC recorded these messages as "Read" by him. I also verbalized this information to him in person which he easily denied but he forgot that he could not deny having read those EPIC messages. He yelled at me like I was a first grader before the patient and then proceeded to confront me outside the room, trying to intimidate me and strip me of my dignity. He was projecting falsehoods unto me. He was trying to twist things around on me. I stood there and waited for him to finish these useless strategies and tactics and then calmly stared into his dilated sociopathic pupils in silence for 5 longs seconds looking him straight in his eye balls and then calmly said, "you just repeated something that was untrue to the patient which you are well aware was untrue". His mask slipped and he became hostile in emotion, body language, and words. I said nothing, studied his face to let him know "your mask has slipped and I'm seeing the real you" non-verbally and then walked away. This happened close to change of shift so he stayed over trying to fix his slip up on the patient chart and I stayed over to MIDAS him. As I was leaving, he was also leaving so I sat back down for 12-15 minutes and discretely called for a safety escort to the parking lot where my car was closely parked to the physician parking section. My intuition told me this doctor is aggressive and the way he looked at me after the first confrontation gave me the impression he was going to try to confront me again. Sure enough, he was waiting in his car for 12-15 minutes for me to come out but when he saw me being escorted by the safety escorts to the parking lot, he sped off like a bat out of hell from the physician parking area. This is called harassment.

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Fran L. LeMay has 23 years experience as a LPN, EMT-I and specializes in LTC.

9 Posts; 356 Profile Views

On 3/26/2020 at 7:31 AM, Patrice said:

While most of the physicians we work with are good people, lets not pretend there aren't some who are abusive. Statistics show that there is a significantly higher incidence of ER physicians and surgeons being SOCIOPATHS when compared to the general population. It is therefore likely, that if you have been working ER or surgery units for several years, the chances are high that you have come across one of these mentally abnormal physicians. Working the ER setting I am currently dealing with a physician who lied to a patient and intentionally attempted to make me look like a narcotic thief before the patient and lied to her about me not reporting her concerns to him. He got caught recently lying and the patient who was a nurse unbeknownst to him called him out on several things he lied to her and her primary physician whom he phoned about. She reported him to the House Supervisor for lying on me her nurse, lying to her, lying to her primary care physician, overhearing him call her something inappropriate, and something rather serious which I can not comment on here among a host of other issues. He mistakenly assumed I was some sort of push over because I am polite and nice, but boy did he find out the hard way that I am the wrong nurse to try some manipulative, calculating, foul tactics out on. He was trying to intimidate me into never sending him EPIC messages but to tell him in person. He was upset that the messages I sent to him exposed his lying. He denied knowing certain things but forgot that EPIC recorded these messages as "Read" by him. I also verbalized this information to him in person which he easily denied but he forgot that he could not deny having read those EPIC messages. He yelled at me like I was a first grader before the patient and then proceeded to confront me outside the room, trying to intimidate me and strip me of my dignity. He was projecting falsehoods unto me. He was trying to twist things around on me. I stood there and waited for him to finish these useless strategies and tactics and then calmly stared into his dilated sociopathic pupils in silence for 5 longs seconds looking him straight in his eye balls and then calmly said, "you just repeated something that was untrue to the patient which you are well aware was untrue". His mask slipped and he became hostile in emotion, body language, and words. I said nothing, studied his face to let him know "your mask has slipped and I'm seeing the real you" non-verbally and then walked away. This happened close to change of shift so he stayed over trying to fix his slip up on the patient chart and I stayed over to MIDAS him. As I was leaving, he was also leaving so I sat back down for 12-15 minutes and discretely called for a safety escort to the parking lot where my car was closely parked to the physician parking section. My intuition told me this doctor is aggressive and the way he looked at me after the first confrontation gave me the impression he was going to try to confront me again. Sure enough, he was waiting in his car for 12-15 minutes for me to come out but when he saw me being escorted by the safety escorts to the parking lot, he sped off like a bat out of hell from the physician parking area. This is called harassment.

I had one like this. I endured him for 10 years. after he told me he didn't believe what I was telling him, I fired him and got a super doc who is very nice to all of his patients.

 

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