May 27, 2009

Meltdown USA

I was floated to the Hospital's main campus today and it was HORRIBLE. First of all, my brain is beyong the ability to compute. It's mush. I'm having to work really hard to have my thoughts reach my fingertips right now. Bear with me.

I don't think I should have been floated to an entirely different hospital right out of the gate, but whatever. I never oriented there, so I think it's really shitty and I was not happy about it whatsoever. It's very irresponsible on their part, IMO! But I was just a warm body to fill a spot, a body to produce enough work that would be equivalent to slave labor in some places.

There is no way to describe today except to say that every patient was either completely dependant or near death. To give you an idea of the circumstances I was placed in I will say that I most of the reports I recieved (via phone, which I hate) left out huge, MAJOR bits information and I had to play super sleuth all day on top of super nurse ( and believe I was NOT). The highlight of my day was walking into a pt's room to assess them only to discover that a)they had a peg tube I wasn't told about b) they also had a super-pubic catheter I was unaware of c) they were a quadrapalegic (which I knew about) AND d)they had more holes in them than swiss cheese. To top it all off, I come out of the room bewildered wondering if maybe I had the wrong pt entirely only to get a phone call from Infetion Control, informing me the pt has some sort of bacteria that my tired brain can't remember, but I was told it was worse than C-diff and MRSA combined. LOVELY! Oh and they were dx with this on 5/15 and we're just learning about this because....?

I was so pissed I thought my head would explode. Who is running that damn circus anyway? I told the charge nurse I was filling out an incident report. I think it's totally unacceptable. She just shrugged. OH and can you believe that that person with all the holes, and I do mean, GAPING, Gangrenous wounds, didn't even have a wound nurse consultation?!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I don't even have words, but 'dispicable' comes to mind.

The day only got worse. I had a young female pt (early 20's)yell at me because I would't let her get up to the bedside commode and suggested she use a bedpan....she had 2 broken legs for God's sake! Did she think I actually enjoyed cleaning out her bedpan? Seriously? As if my day needed all of her whiney, petty bullshit complaints. "My butt cheeks are squished together on the bedpan!" "Those diet people forgot my chocolate milk!" WAH! Geezus. She was on that call bell like white on rice. "I'm a patient too!" She said at one point. I took a deep breath, smiled and just walked out. I had so many sick people that her whiney butt just about made me loose my cool. I don't think I've ever come so close to mouthing off to a patient in my life. Her complaints weren't related to being sick. She thought she was at the damn Hilton and I was her maid and that's the bottom line.

My phone rang off the hook. At one point I was so overwhelmed with orders, giving blood, running my ass off looking for HELP, that I actually considered tossing the phone into a nearby toilet and saying F*CK IT ALL. I idn't get a lunch, not that that's nothing new, but no one even offered for me to go, Hell, the only person I really saw all day was my assistant and GOD BLESS HER! If it wasn't for her, I think I would have started acting a fool like Tom Cruise in Jerry McGuire.

I kept getting calls from telemetry about a pt who's HR was jumping from 170's-190's all day. Talk about NERVE WRACKING! I felt helpless as I was basically waiting for her to go into a-fib. Not to mention the poor woman was in the middle of a meltdown and I was about to go there with her, oh and I had to transfuse 2 units of blood to her as well. Another pt was being transferred to a skilled facility, paperwork galore... It was just too much today. Much too much.

If there is one thing I have learned by being a nurse, it's that without teamwork, your job is shit. Today, there was not a bit of it and for someone new coming to your hospital to help YOU, the least you could do was come out of hiding to offer some assistance. Anything would have been fine. Sighhhhhh. I wish I could cry. I am so frustrated at how use nurses get treated, especially the ones trying to do right by our patients. It's no use. We will continue to be overworked and underpaid because we need jobs and they need bodies. Mission accomplished. It's nothing but a breeding ground for error and it all comes back to me, us, the nurses. I'm feeling very used and abused today. Sorry.


KLS said...

Oh Christy! Holy sh&^!!! I hope you've recovered!

Drofen said...

UGH! I'm so sorry!!!