Adventures in Inpatient Care

I’m still here – in the hospital that is.

And it looks like I will still be here tomorrow. Alas, we’re making the best of it, although I haven’t seen my children for two full days now.

There are a couple of things that  I must get off of my chest before I turn into even more of a cynic about bedside manner. Mostly having to do with nurses that have the charge of taking care of a patient during night shift. I used to think that maybe people were being too hard on night nurses. I thought maybe that night nurses had such a HARD shift from having to work all night, and don’t get me wrong, I am sure that a LOT of them do. However, when you have a patient that wants to be as cooperative as possible so that they may get back to sleep, I say you take advantage of that. Right? I’m clear as mud.

1. Please do not come in and make yourself comfortable on the bed of the patient while you do your job. ESPECIALLY when said patient is having contractions and just not comfortable in the first place.

2. Please do not START a FULL conversation after you have planted yourself on said patients bed.

3. ABSOLUTELY do not turn on every single light in the room before asking if it is okay.

4. Don’t yell out of the door to get the attention of other nurses unless you have a vein open, or a needle in place. If it is a procedure that you can stop and start again, by all means do so. 😐

5. If a patient tells you that she is uncomfortable, don’t try to compare your aching back to her discomfort. You won’t win. I promise you.

6. If it takes you longer than one hour to find a heartbeat for a non-stress test, do the easy thing. Roll the portable ultrasound machine into the room and have one done that way. Resetting the NST velcro over and over for a total of four hours straight is NOT the business and by the second hour, the patient is going to transform into a two year old child.

7. If you are having trouble getting the heartbeats of twins on the monitor and you KNOW that you need 20 straight minutes of monitoring, pull up a chair and follow the heartbeat. It’s MUCH easier then coming in and resetting for four hours straight – no?

Now, by no means do I think that working in the medical field is easy. However, I think that if you put yourself in the role of the patient (and I mean the literal patient – not one that comes in with a chip on their shoulder already, but those that want to follow orders so they can be released!) then something should click.
Overall, I’ve had one SPECTACULAR night nurse – who needed a bit of aiding – and the other nurse on shift turned my last two good hours of sleepy time into a scene from Saw.

Now, I’m going to try to console myself after another bad night, and a Bears loss that shouldn’t have been.

Make it a great day!


  • Reply
    Greene Light Photography
    October 18, 2010 at 3:53 pm

    My mom is a nurse so I have sympathy AND high expectations from them. I hear you loud and clear on the lights situation! There were so many times when I was hospitalized that the nurse could have come in QUIETLY and taken readings and asked me to take my medication. Instead, I felt like a retired drill sergeant had come into my room and was calling for reveille! C'mon Son!! UGH

    I feel your pain…metaphorically of course.

  • Reply
    N. Nicholes
    October 18, 2010 at 5:06 pm

    I'm STILL here, and this last battery of tests has me wanting to rip my hair out. 🙁

    I know that they have a job to do, but for the LIFE of me, I can't understand the whole shaking me, and not reading the notes from the nurses who had me as a charge before they came on duty.

    Yes, yes, yes, I'm being pouty, and I'll be okay when I get more than three hours of sleep straight.

    Until then – anyone want to come and break me out of here?

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