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What makes you irritated by student nurses?

Nurses   (11,535 Views 61 Comments)
by Aly529 Aly529 (New Member) New Member

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DroogieRN has 2 years experience.

10,553 Visitors; 304 Posts

I've been a nurse less than a year. I am so mindful of what it is like to be a student, and I remember how terrified I was, desperate not to make a mistake or look stupid in front of the RN.

Now I'm on the other side. I know that only the students who don't want to do anything or ask any questions are the ones who really "look stupid." And even then, any number of things they are enduring could be contributing to this. In other words, I cut a LOT of slack.

BUT...

1. Don't park at the nurse's station with charts open and spread all over. My program didn't let us sit at all -- don't take my seat. There are only a few, and I don't get to sit often. If I am at the nurse's station, I really need to be there.

2. Don't walk up and block my path and say, "I need report on X," or "I need to give you report," when I am clearly on my way somewhere. Maybe walk alongside me and say, "When you get a minute, can I get report from you/give report before lunch?" This will go a long way with me. I won't forget and will look for you when I get that minute.

3. If you take my med sheets for your med pass, how about a little sticky note in my med book saying something like "Student passing all meds until 1500 (or whenever)." This way, I will know the charge nurse or ward sec don't have them and won't go there looking for them. You get there for clinical an hour before I do in the a.m. I have to hit the ground running and am not always immediately aware my patient has a student nurse. This saves me valuable time looking for my MAR.

4. Don't act like you know it all. You don't. I've been an RN ten months and I certainly don't. There is always something to learn.

5. Don't be afraid to admit you aren't sure about something. Even though you have my patient, I am still his nurse and therefore invested in his well-being. I will be glad to answer your questions about him or help you with something. Don't wait for me to realize there was a problem until after you leave.

That's all for now -- these are the things that jump out at me week to week. Best of luck to you in nursing school! Remember, lots of times the nurse is swamped and stressed and not even a little bit upset at you -- we want you to succeed!

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OgopogoLPN is a LPN, RN and specializes in Med/Surg, LTC/Geriatric.

9,658 Visitors; 585 Posts

A lot of what has been said...I generally like having students around and sharing knowledge.

Don't ask me what a certain med is for...look it up yourself. You'll retain it better that way anyways.

Don't promise patients stuff that you don't know or can't deliver...like trying to get them a certain item on their lunch tray, or that they can move beds to the window when that patient is discharged, or other stuff like that.

If there is a skill that needs doing and I ask you if you would like to do it, be decisive and go for it. Don't waffle for 10 minutes and be intimidated. Pulling a foley is not rocket science.

Use your initiative. If you need supervision to do a skill that your instructor has OK'd for you and I can supervise, come to me with all the necessary supplies and confirmation of a doctor's order if needed. Be prepared to be the one to speak to the patient about the skill and do any teaching that goes along with it.

This may be small, but don't put your lunches in our staff room fridge, and don't sit in our staff room on your break. Take your lunch and go to the cafeteria. Our break room is a break from students as well. There is limited room in the fridge and limited seating. I don't want to spend my break listening to you and your fellow students talk about the next paper due to hear a 10 minute debrief on your first IM injection.

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sunnycalifRN has 6 years experience.

8,433 Visitors; 902 Posts

The whole CRNA thing. Its nice to have hopes and dreams for your future. But have some room for error and don't put all your eggs in one basket.

Haha! Yes, pretty much every student nurse that comes through ICU wants to use it as a stepping stone to become a CRNA. And, when I probe a little to find out why . . . . $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$!! Cha ching!!

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16,365 Visitors; 2,139 Posts

Uh, no. There was clearly a need. Sorry if you didn't like it. But if you're gonna take a tone like that then expect to get checked.

And actually, THAT is EXACTLY the answer to your question. What makes you irritated by student nurses?? This holier than thou behavior.

Talk to me when you've been in our trenches a while...

So you think you're enough to check me?

There is no holier than thou behavior. If you'll reread you've seen that I've studied, trained, and supervised in other fields. Nursing isn't the only field where catty people with a few years of experience think they can sit back and judge others. Regardless, of what your motivations are, whether they are realized or not, I think all people interpret this type of response as defensive and threatened.

Thanks for trying though. You gave it good effort. Reply as you will. Your ego is endangered.

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CCL RN has 10 years experience and specializes in Cath Lab/ ICU.

11,660 Visitors; 557 Posts

So you think you're enough to check me?

There is no holier than thou behavior. If you'll reread you've seen that I've studied, trained, and supervised in other fields. Nursing isn't the only field where catty people with a few years of experience think they can sit back and judge others. Regardless, of what your motivations are, whether they are realized or not, I think all people interpret this type of response as defensive.

Thanks for trying though. You gave it good effort.

Yeah. THAT holier than thou attitude. That's the one. Good luck in nursing. Im sure as a student that you know everything, right? Because you've done it in a much, much

harder field, right?

Or because you've used google a few times and read how "hard" nursing is right?

Yeah.

But you gave it a good effort.

Again, good luck in the REAL world of nursing. I'm sure your attitude will get so so very far!

And yes, actually, I DO think I'm enough to check you. See, I am a nurse, with real life nursing experience, and you are a student, doing exactly the very thing that all nurses hate in students. So consider yourself checked. Yeah, I'm sure you will google some sarcastic response,or try to belittle me. No problem. I know, actually KNOW, the truth, and you don't.

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madwife2002 has 26 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in RN, BSN, CHDN.

1 Follower; 74 Articles; 120,243 Visitors; 4,777 Posts

Please refrain from personal insults thank you

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Aeterna has 4 years experience and specializes in Oncology, Medical.

4,782 Visitors; 205 Posts

I've also only been an RN for a little less than a year, so I remember quite clearly what it's like to be a student. I remember being terrorized by a nurse or two, but for the most part, being treated fairly.

What I disliked as a student or what I dislike about my co-workers treating students:

- If there is a problem with my conduct at all, please tell ME, the one who did something wrong so I can learn. (For the record, in the scenario I am thinking of, I didn't do anything wrong but the nurse thought I had. It was simply a mis-communication. However, the nurse went directly to my instructor in private to rant about how "dangerous" I was without allowing me to give my side of the story.)

- On a similar note: having assumptions made about me before allowing me to give an explanation.

- Being ordered around instead of being asked to do something (i.e. "May I use this computer?" instead of "I need this computer!"). It comes off as politer and less threatening ^^

- I dislike when I see other nurses only letting students do really basic things, like feeding or bathing. Yes, these are great to get help with and it's good practice, but if the student is helping me out with something, I try to think of something neat to show or teach them in return.

Things I dislike seeing in nursing students:

- Disappearing acts. I had one student introduce herself to me in the morning and I didn't see her at all until she reported off to me in the afternoon. I answered the majority of her one patient's call bells. I get that, as a student, you have other things to do, such as answer to your instructor, but really??

- If you have a question, please ask but if it's about an issue that I need to deal with (i.e. whacky lab results, a change in condition), please allow me to work on it instead of asking more and more questions! I will gladly answer questions as soon as I've resolved the issue.

- You, as a student, have the time to dedicate to one or two patients so please, if you notice a patient's hair looks a bit grungy, do your best to wash it, or try to change the bedsheets if they're no longer fresh. Go the extra mile. I can't always due to juggling multiple patients. Your patient will appreciate it very much!

Overall, though, the students I've seen so far have all been very bright, helpful, and enthusiastic. I have very few complaints about them :)

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1,704 Visitors; 41 Posts

I'd *love* to see this type of interaction on another professional board...

...only nursing:rolleyes:

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16,365 Visitors; 2,139 Posts

Yeah. THAT holier than thou attitude. That's the one. Good luck in nursing. Im sure as a student that you know everything, right?

Nah, I'm in nursing school to learn. If I knew it I wouldn't have enrolled. ;)

Also, I don't need to Google sarcasm. A decade of public service and law enforcement has taught me all too well how to address that and deal with self-entitled people like yourself.

I'm sorry I threatned your five years of actual nursing practice. I think I used to work as a paramedic over about five years although that was a part-time deal. I thought I knew everything too early on.

Good luck though. You have much to learn, grasshopper.

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16,365 Visitors; 2,139 Posts

I'd *love* to see this type of interaction on another professional board...

...only nursing:rolleyes:

I do apologize. One of my character flaws is that I get absorbed in an argument if I have a personal stake in it, for lack of better terms. I used to be much worse, lol.

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CCL RN has 10 years experience and specializes in Cath Lab/ ICU.

11,660 Visitors; 557 Posts

Yeah, I worked pre hospital too. My first job actually. Talk to me when you've had almost 6 years ICU/cath lab experience. Talk then. Except then, your talk will actually be backed up by real experience.

Yawn.

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nursynurseRN has 12 years experience and specializes in TELEMETRY.

6,062 Visitors; 294 Posts

Student who spend all their time in the charts doing papaerwork and do not help the patient. Those who don't ask questions and just assume. The students who feel like they know everything and think it above them to do some dirty work....

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