Let us say that you have someone in the nursing home or in a rehab and care center, and you have detected something incorrect or wrong or just something that needs to be changed. Your first instinct might be to tell the nurse or aid that is in the room or on duty right there. Most times, these workers will instruct you to go to the nurses station. And, since you are usually agreeing to almost anything that sounds reasonable, you go to the nurses station and you present your problem, question or critic right there at the nurses station.
Do not do it. You heard correct. When the aid, worker or doctor instructs you to go to the nurses station with the problem, do not do it. Well, you can go there, and find out which nurse or staff member is in charge of that particular issue or problem that you wish to speak about , for example, food, or clothing or medicine. Find out which worker is in that department. Once you are directed to the proper nurse, do not speak with her about the issue at the nurses station at all. Why ?
- If the issue is something that is likely to annoy the nurses or make more work for nurses, then all the nurses or workers that are hanging out at the nurses station will have their ears open to what you are saying. So, instead of having your privacy and the resident's privacy, now every single person sitting or hanging out at the nurses station is now listening to what you are saying.
- Since everyone is listening, and since the issue might be one that is annoying or probably to cause the nurses more work, most likely, some will interject with their own remarks, opinions or sly remarks regarding the issue EVEN though they have no authority to rectify or change the problem and even though it is not their department. They will feel free to enter into the conversation. This puts you at a loss. Have you ever tried to converse with five people who are disagreeing with you or who might be upset that your observation or problem might be causing them to have more work every day? Trust me with this one. Whenever you want to speak with staff, never speak with the nurse who is sitting behind the nurses station. Tell her that you need privacy in conversation and ask to speak with her aside somewhere. There is no reason why she should not oblige you. After all, the HEPA laws guarantee patient privacy do they not?
- It is your right to refrain from discussing patient's, resident's or family members issues or problems or questions in the hallways of facilities or in any public areas of the nursing home. That is the law. And any employee, no matter what their job, who insists that you discuss private things in the public areas of the nursing home is breaking the law. But most employees will not tell you this. So, learn the laws yourself and save yourself lots of time and trouble.
- Speaking with one staff member while five or six others are watching and listening protects the facility but does not protect you or the resident. Why? They are protected because they can back each other up and say what you said, even if you did not say it. This has happened many times in unscrupulous rehabilitation and care centers across America and across the world.
So, protect yourself and protect the family member, resident or patient by not discussing anything personal at all at any nurses station or in any public area of any nursing home, physical rehabilitation and care center or in any medical building, lab or hospital. Protect yourself from unscrupulous workers. If a worker is innocent and honest, that worker will want to talk with you in private, not in any public hallway and not in the public nurses station. So beware of ANY employees that wish to discuss personal things at the nurses station. Yes, they need to take a little time to come to the room or to bring you to an area of the place that is not public. But that they must do. They just will not tell you that.
One family member I know approached the nurses station to discuss a private matter and the matter --to be resolved--would mean extra and more work for the staff, so naturally, they did not want it resolved. The family member made the mistake of mentioning the problem at the nurses station. While five or six nurses were sitting around, seemingly doing nothing, their ears were spread wider than a happy face smile and they listened intentively. Then one by one, each interjected their own opinion, remarks and angry-looking expressions at the matter, even though they had no authority in the matter, no business in the matter and no power to resolve the problem. This family member learned the lesson the hard way. Then he had six nurses looking at him in disgust, just because they did not want to do their jobs, a little more work.
Moral of the experience, discuss everything in private, not in public, even if the staff wants to discuss it out in the open, never listen to the staff. They are out to protect themselves from more work and from other things. So protect yourself, and listen to your own inner instinct. Have private discussions in private.
FIRE THESE NURSES!
So, exactly which nurses are we talking about when we suggest, fire these nurses?
Okay, so that might be harsh. Instead of firing these nurses, let us just transfer them to different parts of the hospitals and nursing homes. Let us give them the harder jobs and then perhaps they will not be just hanging out at the nurses station minding everyone else's business.
Why do we say hanging out? This reason-- whenever you approach a nurse at a facility, most times they are busy , correct? Right. No problem. They are doing the job that they came there to do and they are doing the job they are being paid to do. However, there are some nurses that instead of doing the job that is their own assignment, will be listening with both ears to your conversation when you are obviously speaking to another nurse. As soon as they begin listening to you, instead of doing the job they are stationed there for, they are now hanging out instead of working. So you do not need them there.
You are speaking with one nurse, and that one nurse barely has time for you, so how in the world do you think that two or three or four nurses who just happen to be in the nurses station at the time, have time also--to listen to your conversation when you are not even speaking with them. They do not. So every moment they spend eavesdropping on your conversation with Nurse A, that nurse is not doing her own job since she is not Nurse A. Nurse B has stopped her own job and is now listening to you speaking to Nurse A , and then Nurse B enters her opinion when she is not being asked her opinion.
I say, transfer Nurse B to another part of the hospital where she will not have the opportunity to hang out and listen to other conversations that are not her business. Clear? Yes, clear. Transfer Nurse B--and problem solved.
So now you are informed! Keep your personal business private and keep it out of public areas in any facility.
I updated this article in June 2008.
Melinda Thomas is presently touring the United States of America in search for information, true stories, inside data on what is happening around the world inside of nursing homes and physical rehabilitation and care centers. The material that she has come across, both through personal inspection, investigation, research and organization, is remarkable in length, content and tear-jerking memories. She hopes that you share your ideas with her as soon as possible. While her subject topics vary from radical consumerism, computers, teamwork and others, she hunts for the truth and the truth is forthcoming.While her subject topics vary from radical consumerism, computers, teamwork and others, she hunts for the truth and the truth is forthcoming. Meanwhile read all the articles and connect with her through her agent at firstname.lastname@example.org
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