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What should I do?

Nurses   (266 Views | 3 Replies)
by Paradigm_shift Paradigm_shift (New) New

35 Profile Views; 1 Post

You are nursing a 75 years old lady, paralysed with bed sores. The ward seems chaotic with shortage of staffing.

Suddenly, a doctor asked you why the dressing for bedsores is not done for your patient. I planned to do the dressing after I completed the observation, that was what I told the doctor.

          While you are preparing the dressing trolley in the treatment room, the nurse manager instructed you to fetch a patient in the X- ray department immediately due to hypoglycaemia. However, the patient is not under your care.

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FacultyRN has 13 years experience as a MSN, RN.

174 Posts; 1,049 Profile Views

An acutely hypoglycemic patient, whether yours or not, is a higher priority than a dressing change. For that reason, I'd communicate to the manager "OK, I'll go get that patient. Will you let her nurse know I'll have her back in a few minutes so she can be ready to help when we're back in the unit? Dr. Smith wanted me to get Other Patient's dressing change done right away, so if you see him, please let him know it'll be a little longer." That way, if the doctor makes a fuss, your manager is already aware of the delay and on your side. 

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Jedrnurse has 25 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in school nurse.

1,652 Posts; 14,812 Profile Views

49 minutes ago, FacultyRN said:

An acutely hypoglycemic patient, whether yours or not, is a higher priority than a dressing change. For that reason, I'd communicate to the manager "OK, I'll go get that patient. Will you let her nurse know I'll have her back in a few minutes so she can be ready to help when we're back in the unit? Dr. Smith wanted me to get Other Patient's dressing change done right away, so if you see him, please let him know it'll be a little longer." That way, if the doctor makes a fuss, your manager is already aware of the delay and on your side. 

Better yet, ask the manager to kick in and change the dressing (or get the patient in x-ray). The manager should know that folks are running around; piling on doesn't help...

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Been there,done that has 33 years experience as a ASN, RN.

5 Followers; 6,340 Posts; 70,485 Profile Views

You must be a student, and this is a theoretical question.

For future reference, assess the hierarchy of needs.  This  is a question regarding prioritization. Dressings can wait, hypoglycemia  cannot. 

 In the real world you would  address the hypoglycemia and get that patient's nurse to do your dressing, afterwards 😉 

Best wishes.. it's a jungle out there.

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