Told to fake vital signs


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Alex_RN, BSN

333 Posts

Has 8 years experience.

I'm just curious, how many beds?


89 Posts

When I pointed out that there was no equipment, I told "the other aides do it- make it happen".

i would have to literally bit my tongue to refrain from replying "other facilities manage to have proper equipment on hand- make it happen".

seriously though, report them to the ombudsman. legally the facility has to have that contact information displayed in a place where visitors/patients/employees can see it. if yours doesn't, google searching can help.


3 Articles; 195 Posts

I would take a manual heart rate, and respiratory rate by counting. A temp if you have one, and document "unable to assess RN notified" in the blank spaces. Falsifying documentation is a board reportable offence and can get you fired and loose your CNA license which will effect future license if you are wanting to be an RN one day. I have had techs chart vital signs without walking into the room, Vitals are a delegated task, if the tech doesn't do it the RN is legally responsible for the work. So if I delegate to someone who falsifies documentation (especially if I know they are doing it) I can be put under peer review as well.

You should fill out a safety report because any RN telling you to falsify documentation needs to be reprimanded and re-educated (they wouldn't loos their license the first time they would be put on probation). You should be able to do this anonymously and even if people know it was you, whistle blower protection will keep them from retaliating.

Either way I would start with refusing to document anything you cannot measure with the tools given you. Nevermind getting in trouble, a patient could be in need of meds, deteriorating, febrile and brewing an infection and no one would know till it's an emergency (think high bp going unnoticed for days then the patient has a stroke). LTC does not mean stable, they still have to be assessed for changes and that is what the VS are for.

TriciaJ, RN

4,299 Posts

Specializes in Psych, Corrections, Med-Surg, Ambulatory. Has 42 years experience.
Call the Ombudsman office and high tail it out of there!

Yup. This. Do not be part of a place like this. You will be held accountable for your (in)action regardless of what instruction you get from whom. Keep your integrity and use a food bank if you have to. Just get out and please report them to all the appropriate parties.

Specializes in Cardicac Neuro Telemetry. Has 100 years experience.

Report this facility to the state. And find another job. If they're taking these kind of these kind of shortcuts, I don't even want to know what else they're doing or not doing.


6 Posts

Run. Run very fast and don't go back.

tropsnegRN, ADN, BSN, RN

2 Articles; 65 Posts

Specializes in Cardiac, COVID-19, Telemetry. Has 4 years experience.

If you're planning on becoming a nurse someday, this could jeopardize your future licensing. I would get the heck out of there! I worked a LTC facility where we had equipment but it was garbage. I brought my own stethoscope and BP cuff. My stethoscope was expensive, but I bought it for nursing school and my future career and the BP cuff was cheap from Walmart. You can file those purchases related to work with your taxes too, btw. The facility that I worked out would chronically short-staff us to the point of one MAYBE two aids on one unit with nurses that did not help AT ALL. It was immediate termination if you ran a Hoyer lift with only one aide. I got my CNA certification through them, then they started doing garbage like that, and I quit and waited tables until I got on with a local hospital.

Specializes in Corrections, Surgical. Has 3 years experience.

WOW! I hate 'make it happen' type of bosses. I would do like others are saying and leave. Its a shame that facilities treat nurses and staff like garbage these days. How are you supposed to help patients without basic nursing tools? It seems like crazy patient to nurse ratio and not having enough equipment is becoming the norm now. Facilities need to stop being cheap and start paying for basic needs! I know jobs are hard to come by buy try to find a place that will treat you better.

A nurse should be responsible for obtaining his/her own vital signs when giving meds with perimeters. CNAs should only be assigned routine vital signs.

parameters not perimeters

That is absolutely ridiculous. I would first try to confront the issue head-on. Ensure that the nurse absolutely 100% knows that there is no equipment and that it sounds like the other aides are making up numbers. I would communicate solely by leaving a paper/electronic trail (somehow manage to obtain her email at work). Then, if you get no or an insufficient response, go above the nurse all the way up to the DON. Upper management can't fix a problem they don't know exists. Then, if need be, notify the governing body of nursing and/or the ombudsman.

And, I agree with the posters above me - it would be a good idea to look for employment elsewhere while going through the above.


2 Posts

What about the poor patient?? How can the staff know if something is wrong - or does anyone even care?? The last place I'd want to be is a patient in that LTC facility. Horrors!

Definitely report the situation to the DON and the ombudsman. You can leave but don't turn your back on those helpless elderly. Remember, we're all getting closer to being in their shoes...


1 Post

Yep. I've had this happen. Finally bought my own equipment and then left in the bottom of the medcart on accident and someone stole it. Top notch facility I'm telling you. Top notch.