Friday, August 23, 2013


I had the cops called on ME.  Yep...ME.  One of my patients was mad her daughter left & for some reason claimed I wasn't her nurse.  We aren't talking about a little old confused lady either.  We are talking about someone less than 10 years older than me & totally alert & oriented.  I would categorize her as in has her family wrapped around her finger & isn't happy when there isn't anyone in the room giving her attention.  So she called 911.  And a cop showed up.  And I got a lecture from the security guard regarding the fact that cops don't like coming to the hospital for stuff like this.  Ummm....hello...I didn't tell her to call 911.  Direct your lecture to the patient.  Heck, give her a ticket for wasting their time.  I shook my head & walked off to check on my other patients.  The ones with real health problems.  

I swear...I think back to nursing school & that semester spent in psych nursing & declaring I'll never be a psych nurse....HAHAHAHAHAHA.  At least 50% of my patients are in for psych reasons & not medical.  Sometimes they are medical, but you still have to deal with the psych side too.  And with them closing down the majority of pain clinics & pain doctors who were abusing the streets with prescription pain killers...well, we may as well be a psych hospital.  So many drug addicts, so little time.  We have so many frequent flyers now.  Discharged one day, back the next.  Because they will get admitted & we'll give them the strongest pain meds we have...and they don't even have to pay for it.  That's what healthcare is turning into.  Maybe Obamacare will crack down on stuff like that...I can only hope.  Since it will all be tracked in one national database.  We'll be able to see exactly when & where & why you are seeing a doctor or going to another hospital.  That is about the only good thing I see coming out of this national healthcare push.

To top it off...on that survey they get when discharged...the survey that determines if the hospital loses 1% of their income....they ask if their pain was controlled.  HA!  Their pain is never controlled enough.  We cannot win on that question.  Asking a drug addict if they got enough pain medication to their satisfaction.  If we gave them what they wanted, they'd overdose & they don't even care.  Seems like so many just want to drift through life.  It's sad.  I know some start out with a legitimate need for the medication & end up hooked.  But I would say that is a small majority.  

Alright, enough about that.  Not even sure how I got there.  We got called into an impromptu meeting the other morning & basically chastised that we all have bad attitudes & it is affecting the patients so please leave your attitude at the door.  WTF?  Why not address the reasons we may have bad attitudes & work towards changing that?  The leadership we have had the last couple of years is awful.  Yeah, I'm saying it...awful.  The staff is not the problem.  We have a great staff & we put up with a lot of b.s.  We are not the problem.  

It is like they want us to be robots with no personality or thoughts.  Just do as I say & don't talk back.  Do you know there are some nurses being called into the office because their shoe laces are are different color than white or black?  Or their shoes have some other color than white or black on them.  How does that affect their ability to be a nurse?  It's bad enough we are all in the generic navy blue scrubs, but now we can't even have a pink or blue line on our shoes?  That makes us non-professional?  Shoe laces?  Seriously?????????

Sigh, just when I think they can't possibly think up anything else to add to our job or complain about....there is always something more.  And now we have techs....great.  But we need to ask them "nicely" to do their job or just do it ourselves.  We have to ask them to do their job.  Does that make any sense?  And if we don't ask nice enough or if they don't want to do it, we are expected to do it.  Come on!

Guess I needed to vent a little bit.  :)

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Time is still flying!

That patient I wrote about in the previous post...her husband got banned from the hospital because he was taking her pain meds & shooting them up in his arm.  Nice.  

Seems like we are seeing more & more of those type patients since they cracked down on the "pain clinics."  So many drug addicts...and it isn't just being addicted to the meds.  They are shooting them up, snorting them, taking wayyyy too many of them.  I really don't know how they are not overdosing.  It's sad, but we aren't a rehab.  And I'm not saying all of them, but a large majority come in with that selfish attitude & act like we owe them something!  They have attitudes & they aren't pleasant ones.  

I'm not one to judge & hold back on meds.  As long as they are ordered & their vital signs are stable & they are alert & oriented...I'll give what is ordered.  I've always told my new nurses...this isn't intervention.  Just give what is ordered & shake off the attitudes the patients give you.  It isn't personal.  They value a drug more than life itself & we aren't going to change that in the 12 hours that they are in our care.  Besides, they aren't here for help...they are here because they can't afford the drugs on the street & in the hospital they are free.  

Needless to say, I've had a very light schedule for summer.  Two shifts a week & relaxing the rest of the time.  I was getting close to the feeling of being burnt I took a break.  I refuse to allow work to stress me out.  It isn't worth it.  The only things that matter to me are health, family & friends.  Life is too short to take everything else too seriously.  

This is the first year that I've noticed what a negative work place that being a bedside nurse really is.  I mean we take care of sick people.  They are stressed & venting to us in order to feel a little better.  We are taking care of people who may not necessarily truly be sick physically, but mentally they are very sick & again...attempt to drain us mentally.  I see people would rather drag us down to their level than to break free from the stress & make changes in order to be happy.  I don't know why it took me so many years to see how draining a bedside nurse's job really is.  

I still love my patients (well, most of them).  I love the hours.  I love that when I walk out the door at the end of a shift, all the stress stays in those doors.  I refuse to take it home.  Although there are times where I feel it creeping in (perhaps more hormone related) & I immediately address it.  I am not going to let stress get me.  I don't thrive off stress or drama.  

Looks like I just destressed  Whatever it takes.