Sunday, August 18, 2013

My fitness journey: Update

Well, the running has stopped for a week or so now. I'm rehabbing an ankle injury. In lieu of running I have climbed back on my old bike. 

In my youth I was inspired by my mother who, in her 30's, became a lifeguard, and a cyclist. She was in the best shape of her life. She rode the MS 150 which as the name implies was 150 miles and took 2nd place in the Tulsa City Triathlon one year despite missing a turn and having to turn around. These are only the most memorable ones there were others. She has a whole dresser drawer full of awards and medals. All this on a second hand Schwinn road bike my Uncle gave her after he bought a new one.

I wanted to cycle too. My parents knew me well and bought me a cheap Wal-Mart mountain bike to ride until I became bored with it. Weeks after they bought it, I won my first event. It was a youth bike ride that was measured in laps accomplished in a set amount of time with a person keeping track of your laps. I continued to ride that bike for a few years before my parents had me fitted for a real bike at a bike shop. This was a Schwinn made back before they sold their souls to the Devil and began selling out of Wal-Mart stores.  My dad had gotten involved in his own way by creating a bicycle tour with distances of 15, 40 and 70 miles. This event just had its 16th annual ride this past April. High School ended and I went off to the Army and I left my bike behind. I spent the next four years only running.  

Now I'm a little older (in fact, today is my 31st birthday Hooray for me!!) and I still attack all of my interests full speed ahead. "Anything worth doing is worth overdoing" I always say. I wound up with a sore ankle that wouldn't go away for a few days. I had to stop running temporarily.  I hopped in the truck and started scouting routes locally and checking distances. I found a nice little 5 mile stretch that I could do back to back to back and increase my ride by 5 miles at a time. I have started at 10 miles. Oh and I'm still riding my old bike. Except now it has a baby carrier on the back. 

So, I have adjusted my goals a little. I originally wanted to run a 5K but now that seems so pedestrian and ordinary. Hell, everybody runs a 5k it seems. So, I have my sights set on running a triathlon next spring. More specifically a sprint triathlon. And now its not sponsored by sprint the phone company. It's a faster, or rather, shorter version. Usually consisting of a 750 meter (.465 mi) swim, 20 kilometer (12.5 mi) bike, 5 kilometer (3.1 mi) run.  I really don't know where I will get the swimming practice at in this part of the country. Swimming in the winter is unheard of with the lack of indoor swimming pools. There are alternate ways to do triathlons too. You can do them as a relay with a team. Perhaps I will find a good swimmer and do the rest myself.   

Anyways, for the update. The diet is going pretty well. I have lost 10 lbs and am going strong and resisting temptations. No birthday cake for me this year.

Be sure to follow me on twitter @MurseWisdom

Also follow @JustSomeMurse and @That1Murse 

My partner in fitness @RyanwithanS is starting a blog that ties in with my NurseStrong movement. When he has it up and running I will link to it here and at

Friday, August 9, 2013

Out of Shape Nurses

Why are Nurses, as a Whole, Out of Shape?

I found myself watching Extreme Weight Loss a couple of weeks ago and I liked it. Mainly because I get a instant gratification as I get to see an entire year of work in 90 min. So, I set it to DVR. The next week the subject or contestant or whatever they are called was a Nurse. So, I'm looking at her and she is middle aged and obese. So, the first thing that pops in my head "She must work in an office" Right? because there is no way a floor nurse could get by and be that out of shape. Well, then they show her at work... On. The. Floor. I was outraged. It was personal now. I do the same job as this woman but she has managed to get so far out of shape that she has an apron! (Which she claims to have never heard that term before. So, Panniculus for those of you who are unfamiliar with apron.) So, the host shows up to surprise her, Which we all know is Bullshit because they have at least 2 TV cameras in the room before he walks in. But I digress... So he arrives to make this announcement and they show this room full of her co-workers and they are all overweight. I'm linking the video here. Then the host goes on to say how Nursing as a profession has one of the highest rates of obesity. It was an eye opening moment and I had a epiphany. Nurses can't work out like everyone else. We work long, strange hours and we are exhausted after work, and you can forget about before work... we don't get enough sleep as it is. Nurses often time find themselves putting everyone else's needs first and ignoring their own. This leadds us down the slippery slope. What nurses need is a diet and exercise plan developed by nurses for nurses. I want to fill this role.

I'm going to start slowly at first, with blogs about healthy living and exercise, then move on from there. I would eventually like to build up to having actual events such as a 5K or similar type of community events. Also, I'm going to have a fellow tweeter start his own blog and I will link to it on my website.

I would like to hear your own weight loss success stories and will share some on here and on the website. So, please email me your stories to

I have embarked on my own fitness journey starting last month. I invite all of you reading this to make that first step down the road to a healthier you.

I have also created a new Twitter account for @Nurse_Strong Please follow me there. 

Stay tuned


Wednesday, July 31, 2013

The Domestication of MurseWisdom

In May my wife charged back into the fray. That rhymes! Anyway, she started working again after a year off. (Baby and what-not) I think I covered all of this in a previous blog. So, here is the new problem. I suck as a housewife. Now, I use the term housewife so that everyone gets an image in their head of one of those domestic goddesses from the 50's with the apron on, cooking, and cleaning with a big smile on her face.
Now, I'm the type of person that is good at everything they do. Not great at it, but good. But I CANNOT get this housework thing down. If it were just the housework or just the infant care I think I would do just fine. But combining the two is beyond my capabilities.  I mean, I'm turning in a below average performance and at best I am accomplishing the bare minimum required to maintain daily operations.

This is leading, of course, to some rough waters in the marriage. Some harboring of resentment related to the others lack of accomplishments during their days at home.  For example I'm mad if my wife leaves any dishes not done and shes mad that I'm her husband.  My wife thinks she works harder on her days off than I do, but in reality we both work hard I'm just inept at doing these things, so, I'm probably working just as hard if not harder but not getting as much accomplished. Then there is the inverse argument, which I'll admit was my doing and that it's probably not a solid platform but I've got nothing else.  I argue that my job is harder, and it is, and as such I shouldn't have to do the Lion's share of the house work. I work in a hospital and my wife does in-home patient care. She has one patient compared to my many. One permanent patient too! She doesn't have to relearn everything about her patient and their history and allergies and family member's names...etc..etc... etc... ad nauseum. I failed to mention that I have no family members that I can rely on to watch my daughter on any kind of regular basis and we will not use a day care until our daughter is old enough to tell us if something happened to her.  My dad was a cop for 36 years, I'm well aware of the sick fucking people that exist in this world.

So, I can't keep up, the baby is more mobile everyday and the dishes and the laundry and the yard and the toys and the laundry and the dishes...  then.....  THEN, she decides to switch to cloth diapers.

Now the diaper change, which I am a master of after all since I am a nurse, has turned into this complicated drawn out procedure involving the use of all new materials and no more using the diaper cream, at night she wears this one, then change her into one of these, then if you're going to be out and about use one of these but take all of this with you if she needs changed while you're out.

Even if I were starting to catch on, which I wasn't, now I'm so woefully behind is laughable.  There is special laundry procedures for the diapers, involving clotheslines, homemade detergent (That's right! Home-made!) and let's not forget that poopy diapers don't disappear into the magic trashcan. They are now taken to the bathroom where I have installed a sprayer attachment to the toilet and they are sprayed out.  (Side note: I'm regretting the insertion of Louie above at this point. The motion is aggravating while I type.)

On a slightly brighter note, Today begins my vacation. I'm heading to an un-named lake and staying in this cabin.

Golf will be played. Hot tubs will be occupied and worries will hopefully vanish; at least until Monday.

The argument is the same everyday, and I'm getting nowhere. I'm fighting the hundred year war with no relief in sight. But I am kept sane by the thought that eventually my daughter will go to school and I will have a day to myself in 4 years or so. Oh and I have this blog and you wonderful people who read it as an outlet. So, I thank you.

As always you can find me on Twitter @MurseWisdom
Follow my friends @That1Murse and @JustSomeMurse too.

Big things coming down the pipe. I have a few things cooking so stay tuned.

Monday, July 22, 2013

The Journey Progresses

Well, week one is under my belt. As I type this I'm eating a tuna salad sandwich and drinking a coke zero. Today is my day off of running but I still managed to walk to the post office with the stroller and did  calf raises until my calves cramped. Then I worked on some core and triceps.  Its still pretty early in the new routine to obsess over my weight but as off this morning I'm down 3 pounds but I was down 5 at one point this week. Like they say, you can measure fitness on a scale. But I can measure knee strain on a scale.

In other news I replaced my laptop today, so I will not longer have to type blogs on my iPhone. This might add to the frequency of blogs.

This is a short one but the baby is asleep and I've got stuff to do.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Back in Shape

My wife isn't the only one who became out of shape with this baby. I have decided to challenge myself to lose some weight and get back in shape. I started running a week ago. Something I haven't done since 2004. That's right. It's been 9 years. My short term goal will be to run a 5k. With my longer goal being a sub 24min 5k or running a 10k if speed isn't achievable at this point.

I also need some muscle improvements and I have enlisted the fittest person I know to help me in that area. I've begun taking supplements for my creaky/gravelly knees that the Army left me with. I will not be taking any performance enhancing supplements, so please, if you want to suggest one... Don't. 

I'm ready to take control and get my ass in gear. I will be using the Nike+ running app too. I haven't decided if I want to go public with a profile to compete against ppl or not. I'll see. Well, it's off to bed. Running at 0530. 

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Over my Dad body!!

Some of my more astute followers may have noticed... aww who am I kidding? All of my followers are astute! So, all of you may have noticed that I have been missing from twitter lately. I tried to sneak a tweet in now and then but mostly I've been absent. The reason for my absence is that my wife has gone back to work after a little over a year off, most of which was with our baby girl. Here she is being choked by an RT.

So, in the classic role of Father/Provider I continued to work as much as possible to allow my wife to stay at home. My wife has never really worked as a nurse. She did some part time med passing at a NH as an LPN during school. So, naturally she was nervous about stepping out into nursing for the first time. I, on the other hand, was petrified about the idea of being alone to care for our infant daughter without anyone else around to help. So, lately, (If you can excuse my country colloquialism) I've been busier than a one-legged cat trying to bury a turd on a frozen pond. I don't mean to ignore twitter, but most of the time spent between witty posts/rejoinders before was spent at work which is my best Muse. Now that my wife is back to work I'm down to 3 days a week instead of 5-6. In addition to the new responsibility, it seems that more and more there is an ever increasing number of Nursing Anon accounts out there and they aren't coming up with much that is original. They may think they are, but they aren't.  I've started to have some of my older tweets stolen and my account copied and now my Avi is being used. I'm ready to evolve into something greater andI  have that in the works.  

It is no secret that I am a founding member of the @MurseMafia. We, as an organization, are planning to help change (or at the very least improve) nursing. Especially for men.  We are in the early stages of development now and are trying to earn enough capital to take off. We have a website, and we are selling merchandise for which we earn very little profit but each T-shirt or coffee mug we sell is advertising gold.  So, please make your way over to our store and take a gander at our inventory. I know the shirts are expensive but there are stickers and buttons that are pretty cheap. I'm networking right now with a freelance artist who creates designs and I'm hoping to get him on board for some new tshirts that we can ship ourselves 

We have big plans in store for our little project and I am excited about its future. If any of you have an over abundance of money and feel the need to donate email me and I'll let you know how. Otherwise, go buy some Murse mafia merch and we can all benefit. 


Thursday, April 25, 2013

Does Nursing make me a better father?

Seven months ago, give or take a few days, my wife and I became members of a not-so-exclusive club referred to as Parenthood.  We did so willingly and, contrary to common practice for our area, we did it after we were married instead of getting married because we were pregnant. This is a meaningful distinction for us and it speaks volumes.  It says that we made this decision as two adults and were prepared for the consequences.

CONSEQUENCES shown below:

 Not bad for my first try. Wait until I get some more practice.

{Quick background on my wife because I'm pretty sure I've never really mentioned much about her. We met while taking pre-reqs for Nursing school but we had both went to high school together. I started Nursing school a semester ahead of her at the same school. Which led to a very rocky first few years of our relationship. However, we saved a bundle on books, or at least she did. We married in nursing school and she spent her last semester pregnant. Now back to the story.}

I started thinking soon after we found out we were expecting our little bundle of joy (see above) and aided in this thinking by current parents who relish the opportunity to tell you the hardships. Some of the more common things were as follows:
  1. You would no longer sleep-in and possibly may never sleep more than a few hours at a time.
  2. The amount of stress you will encounter is unlike anything you have ever felt before.
  3. All the crying.
  4. All the pooping.
  5. All the diaper changes.
But then after the horror stories they would a the caveat... but it is SO worth it!

I made the correlation immediately!  I flashed back to my first year or maybe even first week in nursing school. When all of the seniors would see us and tell us of the horrors that awaited. Such as:

  1. You would no longer sleep-in and possibly may never sleep more than a few hours at a time.
  2. The amount of stress you will encounter is unlike anything you have ever felt before.
  3. All the crying.
  4. All the pooping.
  5. All the diaper changes.
  Look familiar? My wife and I agreed that if we could both survive nursing school, at the same time no less, that this baby business would be a breeze. So, we went in to the final stages with very little stress about the imminent changes.

We discovered that raising a child is more difficult than nursing school in many ways, but it is also easier in many ways. 

Here is what I know, I know that my ability to function on 3 hours of sleep is legendary, and a newborn sleeps approx 20 hours a day. Unfortunately, my newborn did this sleeping 15 min at a time for the first 2 months. 

Baby: 1 Nurse Parents: 0

Despite a near disaster in the sleep department, I had developed the ability to perform everyday tasks without sleep. This is where performance enhancing drugs came into play. I'm not talking about anything illegal like cocaine, hell, I'm not even talking about Adderall these youngsters depend on to tie their damn shoelaces now-a-days. I'm talking about Caffeine. The real Vitamin C... I'm talking Monster, Coffee, Espresso,  Red Bull... you get the picture. I drank so much coffee the first week I gave myself an ulcer.  

Baby: 1 Nurse Parents: 1

Diapers? Seriously? I can change these little things with just my non-dominant hand while peering out of one bloodshot eye! I don't even need to go into the diaper thing.

Baby: 1 Nurse Parents: 2

Poop goes hand in hand with the diapers thing but I felt I should address it separately.  My baby didn't poop much the first month and a half. While at first this seems like a blessing, to a nurse is spells certain ileus! There was about 50 hours of research done in my household before finally asking a Dr. about this "Condition". We were given specific orders and followed them precisely. Every 5 days we produced a BM. It was nerve racking. 

Both sides get a point. Baby: 2 Nurse Parents: 3

Crying. I didn't cry in Nursing school because I am a Man and we have rules. Don't roll your eyes at me and say "Real men do cry" Because I will tell you that I am not imaginary and am very real, and I DO NOT CRY. However, my baby does, frequently, and I am told she gets it from me. I consider that to be a great injustice and resent even the slightest of comparisons. Regardless, crying is noise, and I can tune out noise.

Baby: 2 Nurse Parents: 4  

This brings me to stress.  There is no comparing the two events and the stress each one creates on its own massive level.  I will say this. When you leave Nursing school and go home, even if you have homework, you are still away from Nursing school. With babies, you are stressed all the time and coming home provides no refuge from the stress. Not even mentioning that Nursing school even if taken to its most extreme wouldn't even make it to puberty in the lifespan of a child.

Baby 3...  You know what, I'm sick of keeping score.  Nursing school is hard. Raising children is hard. Doing both is unimaginable, and yet I was in school with new mothers, old mothers, and single mothers.  My hat is off to you, ladies. I am in no way equipped to take that on. 

This Parenting thing is just starting and I'm sure will evolve from here as will my perspective on this whole thing.  Am I a better father because I'm a Nurse? Absolutely! Is the inverse true? Am I a better Nurse because I'm a father? I'd like to think that it adds a level of empathy. So, yes I am.

Well, I hear my little one starting to cry now. 

Thanks for reading,


Check out

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Who are you callin' a Burnout?

We've all seen it. It starts in their eyes. They begin to have that "1,000 yard stare", then they begin to stare holes through their co-workers, maybe even their patients. Next they start to grumble under their breath, or start letting a few bad words slip at the Nurse's station. Then they start showing up to work late and their quality of work begins to degrade. Eventually they start calling in sick or in extreme cases they no-call no-show.  It's not long after this point that they call it quits. They will leave that job for another or some may leave the field of nursing forever.
You might say to yourself, "Burnouts are people who got in to this field for the wrong reasons, I won't burn out because this is my life's work, my calling." If you say or think this your are not only wrong you are at risk. "The individuals who are most vulnerable to occupational burnout are ones who are strongly motivated, dedicated, and involved in the work in which they partake." [1]  Add to that that we are in high risk career for occupational burnout and the odds are not in your favor. 

We call them "Burn outs" or say they have "Compassion Fatigue" and consider this the diagnosis. Well, I see it as the signs and symptoms of a bigger problem. A more systemic problem in nursing as well as many other health care professions. One reason is an epidemic of Nurse Managers, losing their identity as Nurses and focusing more on the management aspect. The only problem is that they are piss-poor managers and don't realize it. Case in point, my manager recently went back to school to get her Master's degree... In business administration!! I suppose she really needed that degree as it most likely helps her when she sits in her office and listens in on conference calls or attends meetings. In gaining this degree, however, she lost touch with her people, her brothers and sisters, her fellow Nurses. Now she can't see that all of the good Nurses that were the back bone of their respective units transfer out from under her grasp or leave the hospital completely. Leaving fewer and fewer of these, smart, experienced nurses trying to keep it all afloat. 

So, how do we prevent/treat "Burnout"? First you must perform a Root Cause Analysis to determine the cause of the Burnout. Some major causes of Burnout include: [2]

  • critical boss
  • perfectionism
  • lack of recognition
  • inadequate pay
  • under-employment
  • tasks with no end (This one ring any bells... or call lights?)
  • impossible tasks / nearly impossible problems for solving
  • difficult clients (Patients)
  • incompatible demands (many demands that may not be achieved together)
  • bureaucracy (This is a big one in hospitals)
  • conflicting roles (home, family)
  • value conflicts (personal / workplace values)
  • meaninglessness of achieved goals (the success type of burnout)
  • social and emotional skills deficit

Prevention is probably easier than treatment. You need to understand your limitations and set realistic goals. If you are a baby Nurse then you need to take baby steps. You will not be in charge of the unit/floor/hospital in your first year. At least you shouldn't be. So, set a goal you can achieve. Many hospitals track statistics such as bar code scanning compliance or pain reassessment times. These are great goals that have a quantifiable and measurable outcome. My favorite is total number of medications administered, I lead the entire hospital for three months in a row this winter in this category and maintained a 97-98% scanning compliance. That one felt good. Like I was getting recognition for always having the patients with the most medications.  Remember that you too need days off and that other people can work instead of you. When they call you in, you can say no. If it wasn't a choice they wouldn't ask the question. My hospital gives 3 weeks of paid vacation after a couple of years and no one uses them. Its like a damn contest to see who has more PTO. 
New Nurses, as you start in your new role/job as an RN at times you will feel like you are the fresh soldiers coming in to reinforce the shell shocked and war hardened troops on the front line.  A lot of times that is exactly what is happening, budget demands may have put a hiring freeze on certain units or the entire hospital for an amount of time and they had to fight with what they had. Some of them may look down on you because you weren't there when times were hard because they are looking for someone to blame. Some older Nurses have developed that "Eat their young" mentality and see you as a threat to them. You have to have the strength and the perseverance to withstand all of that and press on. 

No one started Nursing with years of experience under their belt.

Accept the fact that successful outcomes are not always achievable.

Repeat after me... This is NOT my emergency.

Find an escape or a hobby that is not Nursing related.

And practice saying NO to your boss.

Please feel free to criticize, share, or comment. Subscribing would be great too, but only the cool people do that. 
Follow me on twitter @MurseWisdom 
and follow my friends @MurseMafia @That1Murse and @JustSomeMurse and watch as we change nursing from within.

1van Dierendonck, D., Garssen, B., & Visser, A. (2005, February). Burnout Prevention Through Personal Growth. International Journal of Stress Management, 12(1), 62-77.
2. Beverly A. Potter, Overcoming Job Burnout: How to Renew Enthusiasm for Work, Ronin Publishing, 2005

Monday, March 4, 2013

Flu Season

Damn I hate flu season. I swear! You should be able to slap anyone in the hospital for the flu or some complication arising from the flu if they refused to get a flu shot. #1 most cited reason for not getting the flu shot... it always makes me sick. < face-palm >  Just what do you call this?
Whatever... Any way, that's the reason I've been unable to blog for the last few months. These 60-72 hr shifts are good for the paycheck but bad for the... well, everything else. My sanity, my family, my back, my compassion, my ability to interact calmly with other humans... all strained to the breaking point. But, knock on wood, it seems to be dwindling down now.

Right now my biggest life challenge is transitioning from an Android to my new  iPhone 5. It's strange how much difference there can be. Right now I find myself installing and syncing iTunes on my PC so I can have some music on my new phone before I end up cussing Siri's ass out. I'm not completely sold on the iPhone yet.

I just experienced a major cramp in my hamstrings. Holy shit... That provides me an interesting segue into my next topic "Getting Back into Shape" but first i'm going to walk around a bit.

I think it's safe to say that 90% of us are not in the "shape" we would like to be. I fall safely into that 90%. I have fallen into a rut filled with malaise, depression, and complacency. Not to mention a severe lack of motivation. But there is hope. I recently quit smoking which I've been doing since high school. I'm going cold turkey for those of you wondering. So, I have that major victory that I can use to slingshot myself into becoming more fit. Or fit again I should say.  The plan is in motion, my wife has watched every food documentary on Netflix and has begun to change our diet for the better. Believe it or not that's the easy part. Now I must find time to work out. I'm hoping to start soon. I plan to run 3x a wk and lift 2x a week with one day of cardio cross training consisting of a heavy bag and a pair of boxing gloves. By the way, a heavy bag is an excellent way to decompress after a bad day. Just be sure to use proper form so you don't injure yourself.

Tomorrow is my last day off and I plan on enjoying some relaxation before this all gets in  full swing. I hope to include updates in future blogs.

Until next time,

Keep Calm and Murse On!

Monday, January 14, 2013

Night and Day

 You've heard that old colloquialism "as different as night and day". Recently I began to believe that this may not be referring to presence or absence of the sun and more appropriately, at least for nurses, as the differences between our counterparts on the opposite shifts.  This has always been an issue I would assume. I have noticed long ago that a certain animosity exists between most shift workers. I feel like I'm just stating the obvious here and that you guys will read this and roll your eyes as if I've been naive up until now. The truth is I'm just now reaching the point where I want to vent about it in a public way.

Let me put a little disclaimer on this. I will be speaking in generalities about hospitals and RNs/CNAs of opposite shifts. It goes without saying that this is about my situation at my hospital and does not reflect the work and professionalism of all nurses at my hospital or in the profession at large.

I work day shift now. I have worked night shift, so you can't pull the wool over my eyes about how "Hard" night shift is. I'm going to be blunt... Night shift is easier in general. Night shift is where we start our new nurses and it's where we keep the ones that are a little bit off. Sometimes a nurse will stay on nights because it's all they've ever done and their sanity surely depends on keeping their circadian rhythm on track. On night shift you have the luxury of not having admin looming around. You don't have to deal with meals, and you have a lot less family hanging around. For the most part, your patients sleep at night. Of course there are exceptions, sun downers being the most obvious. The bulk of medications are given during the day too. At my hospital, which is not a teaching hospital, we do not have doctors around after 5ish with the exception of the OB if delivering, the ER and emergency surgeries. Rounds are done (primarily) between 7 and 9am the exception being new admits who come up after rounds. So, night shift will hardly ever have to interact with a doc in person. Some of our night nurses admit to not even knowing what some of our docs look like. We don't have a unit secretary, at least not the conventional kind. We have a CNA who sits and goes over IV charting and charges for half a shift. We, as day nurses, are responsible for all the orders the providers spew out during rounds. With all of the discharges occurring between the hours of 8 and 5 there are only a couple of night nurses that can even complete a discharge, including house supervisors.

Now for the venting.

On an almost daily basis, I walk in to find night shift sitting and shopping online or watching TV on their phones or some other kind of shenanigans, with food and drinks scattered about. I am then privileged with a half-ass, substandard report on Pts that, if I had worked the day before, sounds almost exactly like the report I gave them, as if they were reading mine back to me. After they leave, I must scour the patients charts to determine what was left out of report. What meds were left not given or were due at shift change and were not given. And I have to do it fast because the Dr is rounding and will no doubt catch these mistakes and I will be the target of his ire and the face he/she associates with utter incompetence. My shift and I have each other's backs. I will take the heat if my aid forgot to chart or even recheck a temp on a febrile pt. I'm always down to turn/reposition the heavies. And we will answer any call light. That's how we operate, that's our mentality. It is OUR shift and OUR patients. This sense of fellowship or camaraderie was not present when I worked night shift. It was more of an "Us against the world" attitude. Most of them carry some form of chip on their shoulder for the day shift. One reason for this may be because we are generally staffed with more people, but this is only due to the increased work load. Also, recently they implemented a new policy that made night shift responsible for pulling day shifts AM meds (0730-0900) with the exception of any controlled or refrigerated meds and place them in a locked alcove outside of the patients room. This was met with great resistance from both shifts. Nights, obviously, didn't want to have to do it, but the day shift didn't trust night shift to do it correctly and would rather have the extra workload. Admin countered by adding that Day shift must pull night's meds as well from the same time frame. That was met with more resistance. It now stands, at least in policy, not necessarily in practice, that nights pulls AM meds and Days doesn't pull Night's meds. As either a subconscious or passive aggressive form of rebellion it seems that our meds in the AM are almost always wrong. A few nurses absolutely protest doing this.

Most recently, yesterday in fact, I came in for report on 4 repeat patients from the day before and 2 new patients. I noticed in report that one of the repeat patients IV fluids had been stopped and saline locked. Knowing damn good and well that they didn't call the Dr to DC the fluids I asked why the patient was saline locked. I was told that while turning the patient another nurse told her that she thought the patient was saline locked on a previous shift she had worked. So, without checking orders, they simply saline locked the patient and left. WITHOUT CHECKING THE ORDER! Who does that? This is a hospital! This is a new day! Things change, orders are made, treatments are adjusted! This and the STATUS QUO dept! PAY ATTENTION! I know it is a small thing. Hey, it was only running maintenance fluids at 40/hr. But what if it were something else? What if it were vitally important. What if we were running 1/2 NS with 40meq of KCL at 125/hr to correct a low potassium level and they had shut it off and the next shift didn't catch it, then they reported that the patient was saline locked and lack luster noc shift accepted it without question. That's 36 hours at 125ml/hr which is 4500 mls with 40 meq per liter that's 180meq of KCL that the patient didn't get. One day they said, I don't know if the Pt is A/O they've been asleep all night. Turns out they weren't asleep they were unresponsive. THERE IS A FUCKING DIFFERENCE BETWEEN ASLEEP AND UNRESPONSIVE!

Last night after giving report to an eye-rolling, teeth-sucking, sighing, sarcastic, bitter nurse, I began to report off to another and I overheard the other saying that she "wasn't even going to go in a room tonight." ARE YOU SHITTING ME! It's like my whole shift of hard work is negated by their shift of laziness.

Again, I am venting, this is about my hospital, and even within my hospital it is primarily only a few nurses that are responsible for all of this rant.

But it can't be just me that is noticing something like this. I'm not just being negative, right? I feel better already having gotten that off my chest.

Thanks for reading,

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