Wednesday, September 3, 2008
Look at your Patients
I was reading a post from August 30, 2008 on Mitch’s Mom blog about a baby timer; she hit the nail on the head when she said parents look at your babies, it is true they will tell you when they need something. As a nurse I was taught do not rely on your monitors Look at your Patients. Well I worked in the ER before I became an OB nurse, one night I was working with an overzealous young nurse (not me) who saw on the monitor that a patient was in v-fib. Running from the nurses’ station she knocked over a doctor and two chairs. She was on the phone to the operator to call a code before she reached the room. She grabbed the crash cart on the way to the room nearly hitting other bystanders. She ripped open the curtain slung the cart in and laid the man flat. The family jumped up, asking what is wrong. The nurse did not even realize the stunned look on the patient’s face. Until I asked “what is the problem?” She said in a frantic voice “he is in v-fib!” I said “why don't you slow down and ask him how he feels first” she finally lays eyes on the man. She found a man not in distress, although a little nervous about what she was going to do, looking back at her. His reply was “I’m sure as hell glad someone was here to stop you before you started pounding on my chest.” I had been in his room explaining that he was going to the floor talking to him asking question. I had just adjusted his monitor so that we could see the tracing better. She scared the patient, his family and me, by her entrance to the room. I understand the sense of urgency when you have a strip that looks bad but if you hurt yourself getting there or scare the patient you are not doing anyone any favors.