What was I thinking??? Not!


  • Specializes in Med-Surg, Home Health, LTC. Has 13 years experience.

After a 2 yr absence from nursing altogether and seldom in my experience anyways is the crazy long term care

or skilled nursing or whatever...it is all the same under many different names. It is way to many patients per nurse

I have posted recently on this.

Anyways I did my first shift, over all went well and nice facility. Floating nurse to pick up pieces for any of us on floor.

For some reason- in the madrid of confusion and a very talkative !!!! float-OMG stop chattering while I am trying to

concentrate, I could not find the phenobarbital. It was a near end shift dose due, so made a note and then

when oncoming nurse said "it is in the narc drawer" I at that moment felt like a brand new nurse.

I guess it is way better than wrong drug wrong Pt and I did not overlook it, I just could not find it.

Because I forgot it was controlled.

OMG going for my 2nd shift tomorrow. I have to hand it to those of you that work LTC all the time, you are angels and you must be blessed to not be making any critical errors. Or are you? that is crazy to stay on top of pts conditions and

pass meds on so many. Someone mentioned the most common area of errors are agency nurses in LTC. Believe me if I did not

really need to work right now I would not be doing this! So afraid to make an error that will harm someone!!!

So, next time Chatty Cathy comes around ( and they are everywhere!) I will stop and politely say " I am new here

and really need to pay attention to what I am doing. If this is important , you have my attention.

If it can wait, we can talk later?" or something like that. Gawd!!!


62 Posts

LOL. I'm a new nurse too and find the same problem occurs for me! The aides see me at the med cart and THEN they want to come up and try to get to know me! They are so nice and I'd love to get to know them too, but when I'm passing meds, I like to focus on that and ONLY that so I don't harm anybody either. I don't want to come off rude but if it was their grandma I was about to medicate, I'm sure they'd understand and that is how I explain it to them :)

And don't feel bad...I didn't know Lyrica is kept in the narc drawer! I always thought it is the same thing as neurontin. I still don't really understand it, we don't lock up the Flexril but Lyrica is considered a narc. Boy did I feel stupid to learn that. :)


518 Posts

Has 8 years experience.

I dont wrk at a LTC,but at a house type for 12 medically frail mentally challenged individuals,who are are g-j tubes and a few trachs....anyway.....a couple of weeks ago it was a CRAZY day.....one going out by squad for resp distress...another has a fever...another with something.....short on staff...had to call doc for a few things...so i was a bit behind on meds....usually done by 2:30(shift ends at 3)....still passing my last few at 2:40....anyway....the med nurse that came on for the 3-11 shift came into the med room at 2:40 and started getting her stuff ready....i was fit to be tied.....i told her i wasnt done yet and had a crazy day.....dont mind me she says....pretend i am not even here....AAAHHHHH.....she is new,i finished and checked my MAR over in kitchen....away from the med room.....when i was ready i counted off with her....but JEEZ.....2:40...when your shift doesnt start til 3.....so i brought it up at a meeting.....i said i didnt think anyone should be allowed to come in the med room until their shift or the previous med person is ready to hand over the keys.....YUP...all agreed....:yeah:.....


63 Posts

Specializes in LT, skilled, IV, pediatrics. Has 2 years experience.

Geeze, Kasha! I think you must work in the same facility as mine! Last night I had 2 of my CNAs come up to me during the shift, one wanted to know if I could identify a pill she had in her pocket! and the other one just wanted to tattle on another CNA for something petty. All while I was trying to pull medications and I was already a 1/2 hour behind schedule. And, as you all know a 1/2 hour now quickly becomes 2 hours by the end of the shift.

If anyone has any other good suggestions on what to say to these chatty CNAs, I'd like to know. I certainly don't want to tick them off.


358 Posts

Has 31 years experience.

Kashia, I totally feel you on this one. Even when I wasn't such a new nurse anymore, I found that some well-intentioned coworkers could be really distracting while I was trying to pass meds to 22-25 patients. Also, it wasn't unusual for various department heads ( DON,social workers, dietary supervisor, activities coordinator) to come around wanting to talk about what had gone on over the weekend/overnight with this or that patient. I finally started saying something like "Gosh, I'm really sorry, but I've got some paperwork to take care of and just need to concentrate on finishing this med pass, do you mind if we talk about this later? If it's crucial, we can talk about it now, though."

I always had good responses to this type of statement, and when I finally mentioned it to my DON, she even thanked me for pointing this out, saying she didn't realize that some mornings I had to say the same thing to four or five different people. You've got a million little details to keep straight at all times when you're on duty, and chatty Cathy-types, however well meaning they are, just lead to more distraction. And btw, very understandable about the Phenobarb.

Take care and hang in there!