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Taking orders from a medical student

Nurses   (6,149 Views 26 Comments)
by platon20 platon20 (Member) Member

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Friend of mine who is an RN on a hospitalist service complained to me the other day. A med student who is on their service came up to her and asked her if she could check an orthostatic BP and give a patient a dose of a new antibiotic (apparently the attending had already talked with the med student and approved it). She got pissed, stating that med students have no role "ordering" nurses to do anything and that only the head attending doctor can do that.

HOw do you guys feel about that? Obviously if the med student is rude or whatever thats a totally different story, but I told her that as long as the med student is not making an unreasonable request or yelling/barking at her then I think its part of the job.

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P_RN has 30 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in ORTHOPAEDICS-CERTIFIED SINCE 89.

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Unless the "med student" has MD, or DO or NP after his name NO WAY can she honor his order. It's up to the attending to make sure the student's orders are cosigned immediately. Now if the nurse is really nice and really gullible sometimes she can call the attending and get a verbal/phone order. If it's stat MAYBE it's ok. But if it's Stat shouldn't the attending be there anyway?

DR yes, NP yes MS NO NO NO NO NO

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Friend of mine who is an RN on a hospitalist service complained to me the other day. A med student who is on their service came up to her and asked her if she could check an orthostatic BP and give a patient a dose of a new antibiotic (apparently the attending had already talked with the med student and approved it). She got pissed, stating that med students have no role "ordering" nurses to do anything and that only the head attending doctor can do that.

HOw do you guys feel about that? Obviously if the med student is rude or whatever thats a totally different story, but I told her that as long as the med student is not making an unreasonable request or yelling/barking at her then I think its part of the job.

I don't give any med that isn't prescribed by someone authorized to write prescriptions, be it an MD, NP, or whatever. Since when can a student prescribe??

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Creamsoda is a ASN, RN and specializes in ICU.

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The rule at my hospital is...if they have a short lab coat...they cant write orders. If they have a long coat they can. Theres only a few residents on our unit anyway, and we all know who they are and we for the most part trust them, and they write orders all the time.

Cher

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jmgrn65 has 16 years experience as a RN and specializes in cardiac/critical care/ informatics.

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med students can't write orders! Therefore can't give orders!

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Let me clarify. They use a computer order entry system, where the med student enters orders and its approved by the attending. The order for new abx was already approved and in the system, they ordered a stat dose. The med student was not giving a verbal order, he was telling them baout he change in abx and letting them know that it was a stat order.

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RN4NICU has 15 years experience as a LPN, LVN.

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Friend of mine who is an RN on a hospitalist service complained to me the other day. A med student who is on their service came up to her and asked her if she could check an orthostatic BP and give a patient a dose of a new antibiotic (apparently the attending had already talked with the med student and approved it). She got pissed, stating that med students have no role "ordering" nurses to do anything and that only the head attending doctor can do that.

HOw do you guys feel about that? Obviously if the med student is rude or whatever thats a totally different story, but I told her that as long as the med student is not making an unreasonable request or yelling/barking at her then I think its part of the job.

It is definitely not part of the job. Medical students do not have the authority to order anything, verbal, written or otherwise. The order is not valid unless and until it is cosigned by someone with the authority to do so (MD, NP, etc). I would certainly not take some medical student's word that the attending had already approved the order. What if the attending comes back later and states that he/she never approved the order? Would the nurse having given the med have a leg to stand on? Nope. It is the nurse's responsiblity to know who can and cannot write orders and to make sure that orders are valid before they are carried out.

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

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Was it already approved by the attending? If yes, then what's the problem? He was letting you know of a change in orders.

Right.

If it was electronically approved/signed off by the attending, the med student isn't giving the order, merely informing you of the attending's orders.

If it was..."I talked to the attending, and he said to give it." then that's an entirely different story. Hearsay orders conveyed through unlicensed personnel is never legal.

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Dalzac is a LPN, LVN, RN and specializes in CCU,ICU,ER retired.

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If I was concerned I would have called his boss intern of resident, or I would call the attending and check with him.

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