Saturday, August 11, 2007

Nurses out there...

Yesterday we went to visit a loved one at the hospital.
I had to wait for my anger to subside before I could write about it.

They made plans to move our loved one to a nursing home on Friday evening. We knew this was going to be a sad time for her and her daughter so we decided to go and provide a little moral support. As you can imagine both were visibly upset. This will be the first time in 50 years that they will not be living together...

There is some sort of medication they are giving her intravenously. When we got there it was beeping and when I asked her daughter why it was doing that she said it could be because the medicine was low or maybe she had pulled it out accidentally. The beeping is supposed to alert the medical staff and someone is supposed to come check on it to make sure everything is okay.

We were there for 15 minutes and no one came. I asked her daughter to push the nurses call button which she did.

From where I was sitting I had a clear view of the nurses station. When the call went off i saw the nurse assigned to my friend's room (we will call her NURSE FUCKIN' FAT ASS BITCH, I know, she was blessed with a really long name so we will just refer to her as NFFAB) sigh heavily and sent an aid to turn it off.

The aid came in, shut off the thing, and said NFFAB told her to shut it off. So I asked, I swear to you on my favorite pair of shoes that I was very nice, 'Is she going to come check on it soon?' see I don't know anything about this stuff so I don't know if this is vital or what. The nice aid said she wasn't sure and she went and asked NFFAB.

NFFAB turned and gave me this look that cannot even be described as anger she looked at me with hate. Now, had she known me I would've understood that look. Hell I get it at least once a day and twice on Mondays. But she didn't know me so where had that come from? We stared at each other for like 1 minute (try it, it's along time) my instinct was to get up and smash her head into her computer or at the very least laugh at her tight red pants but what would that accomplish? She slowly turned her head to look away.

It took everything in me to remind myself why I was there. I took a few deep breaths looked around to see if anybody else was being bothered by the pounding in my ears. Nope everybody else was talking about my niece's shoes (she is a junior shoe-aholic in training). My blood pressure slowly went back to normal because I had made a decision.

I waited 15 minutes then excused myself to go to the bathroom.
I went instead to the nurse and asked her if she had been trying to tell me something with the horrible look she sent my way. She acted stupid (actually she is STUPID!) so I gave her memory a quick kick in the ass and then she said 'there's no point in replacing the meds since she's leaving in 30 minutes' (ATTITUDE ATTITUDE ATTITUDE) I told her I understood that but why not just tell us that instead of being so incredibly rude. By this time the nurse manager lady came and I explained the situation NFFAB was so pissed off you could tell she wished we were in a wrestling ring (and to that I say, 'TAKE A NUMBER BITCH!'). The nice manager apologized for the "miscommunication" but I of course had to get on my soap box for just a minute.
I let her know that it worried me because people in the hospital can't always defend themselves so if this happened to me who is healthy (hopefully) what is the guarantee that this is not happening to people who can't do anything about it? The nurse manager apologized again and I went back to my friend's room.

I casually asked my friend if NFFAB (I didn't want to let them know of our show down they have enough to worry about) had mistreated her, her response is what almost made me cry.
She shrugged her shoulders and said 'I don't expect much.'


Why is she so disillusioned? Why shouldn't she expect the best treatment?

Few are the times I feel this sense if impotence!

I know nursing is a hard thankless job. I know some nurses are jaded and tired. But you know what? How would they feel if someone was treating their loved ones this way?
Would they look the other way excusing this behaviour by saying that's just the way it is?

Nurses out there...

Again I want to say I cannot imagine 1 day in your shoes. I know my job is heaven in comparison, but there must have been a reason you decided to become a nurse. Was it to help people? If the answer to that is yes, then please keep that thought in your heart.
Please remember these people are loved by somebody.

On a funny(?) note.
Her oncologist came in and he was Austin Powers' twin except he had really blond hair. He reprimanded the NFFAB because when she removed a needle or something (not sure what it was cuz blood makes me queasy so I looked away) she did not put pressure on it so that the bleeding would stop.
He said: 'Do you realize you're treating a person that has XYZ? You should know to put pressure for at least 5 minutes and not just walk away!' (Yeah baby!) [Austin Power voice]
He also was extremely funny and kept calling my 71 year friend babydoll! :o)
Thanks doc you made her smile!


  1. Oh my! I have had similiar experiences in hospitals with nurses. Sometimes you just want to bitch slap them. I mean you are so right they obviously wanted to be a nurse for a reason ..right!? Well have a heart will ya! There are plenty of great nurses out there..but those rotten ones are starting to spoil the whole bunch! Way to go on defending your are so right...she should expect SO much more than lots of nurses tend to give.

  2. WTF is wrong with these people!!! Don't they know or even care what their patients are living with? that just really upsets me :(

  3. OMG! I am just trying to calm my own nerves and not take over your blog right now with my own soapbox.

    People need to realize it is there RIGHT to find someone who treats them with the respect they deserve. Doctors and Nurses. I've met good ones and I've met bad ones. And I can guarantee I've let them know which they were and their supervisors.

    And now I have to go before my soapbox gets any bigger. LOL.

    (((((hugs to you and your family)))

  4. I don't have the compassion or the I stayed far away from the nursing/psychology fields. I'm thinking that entry into nursing school should be contingent upon a personality/emotional IQ exam.

    Sorry that happened to your friend. My grandpa was moved to a nursing home last week and it has not been all!

  5. Thanks everyone!

    So a mini update.

    It turns out that the medication they were giving her had something to do with her platelets. Since she was not given the meds as prescribed she is now in the nursing home isolated from everyone with a high risk of infection...!

  6. As a nurse hopeful and a cancer patient also it made me cry to read this. it hurt my feelings in ways i cannot describe. I'm glad you had the mind to share your mind with that nurse. Your friend is lucky to have the love of those around her becuase when push comes to shove thats what matters most!



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