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Scapegoated in SNF

Nurse Beth   (261 Views | 0 Replies)
by Nurse Beth Nurse Beth, MSN (Columnist) Educator Writer Innovator Expert Nurse

Nurse Beth has 30 years experience as a MSN and specializes in Med Surg, Tele, ICU, Ortho.

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Dear Nurse Beth,

I work in a Massachusetts SNF. I had worked a 16 hour shift and gave report and count to the overnight nurse. When she was doing a head count she saw a resident needed to go to the hospital. I stayed for a few to help out, but she stated she would fill out transfer paperwork to sent resident to hospital. Paperwork wasn't filled out right away. Management is trying to blame me when she had already taken report and count. I say once she takes the keys the unit is hers. I had already worked 16 hours and she knows how to transfer a patient. Why am I the scapegoat?

Dear Scapegoat,

Without more details, it's hard to answer. What exactly is management blaming you for? This is presented as a paperwork problem, but is this more of a nursing problem? It's not clear if this is merely a delay in documentation, or a failure to recognize a change in the patient's condition.

If the patient had a change in condition that was identified at headcount but should have been picked up on earlier, that's on you. If the overnight nurse then delayed in transferring a patient who required hospitalization, it's also on her. 

You're saying she had already taken report and count, but report didn't include that one of the residents needed to be transferred to the hospital. I would clarify with your manager what your responsibility was, and what you were expected to do that you didn't.

Best wishes,

Nurse Beth

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