So our tube system had gone down longer than it usually does. Sometimes it goes down for a few minutes but today it has been down for several hours.
I went to walk down a telepack for a patient that was transfering to another floor and when I got the floor I asked an RN if she had seen the RN I was looking for:
Me: “Hey there do you know where I can find Nurse Awesome?”
RN: “Uh well you can go into the patient’s room and put the call light on and wait for her to show up.”
…Instead of saying something like…”No I haven’t seen her” or “she looks like this” she says that I should go to the patient’s room and press their call light and wait for them to show up. Never have I ever..
I ended up finding her in the office seconds later after walking away from the other nurse.
[Insert deep sign sound]
I find out that a patient had been transferred to another floor and was not notified by the RN (or anyone).
This is significant because if the patient goes into a lethal cardiac rhythm we will not be overhead page to the correct floor and this could lead to the death of the patient. So I call them up (as I have done too many times before.)
Me: “Hey this is Insane Employee, I noticed that the patient that was in room 222 moved to another floor. Is that right?”
RN: “Oh yes, they moved a while ago.”
(There was no ‘oh my bad’, or ‘I’m sorry about that.’)
Me: “Okay just make sure that you let us know next time because if the patient has a lethal rhythm we will be paging to the incorrect floor.”
RN (offended): “Uh, okay.”
To those individuals who designed our ECG monitoring system…what the hell…why would you put ‘close’ and ‘save’ right above one another? This has caused a lot of headaches…When working on the new version, it might help to put some distance between these buttons!
In the room that I work in (and also as a CNA) there is something I’ve dubbed as a ‘Cluster’. Hours will go by where there will be no activity, no call lights, no emergencies, no phone calls, etc.
Then all of the sudden, a flurry of activity begins. Phone calls off the hook on all stations from every part of the hospital. ‘This’ needs to be done, ‘that’ didn’t get done and everything seems to converge and be compressed into about one to several minutes.
Then after it’s over there is quiet for a while. It is a phenomenon that is currently unexplained but very real.
We will also occasionally experience a ‘Hypercluster’ where the s*** really hits the fan and goes on longer than 10-15 minutes (this is a long time when you are being slammed with many things) followed by a period of calm or limited activity.
Assemble the science team, we’ve got a real mystery on ours hands!
I don’t have enough fingers and toes to count how many times this situation has happened.
A patient had come off of their tele pack leads and I called the RN twice with no return call and the clinical manager didn’t answer. After this I called the floor and no one answered.
I page over head on the floor per our protocol:
“Leads off in room 99.”
My phone suddenly rings:
RN (Quite offended): “Why did you just page overhead?”
Me: “You, CM and the floor weren’t answering.”
RN (As if I am supposed to know): “Well they [the patient] are in the shower.”
At the other hospital I worked at we had some very serious cases which included a wide array of medical injuries and diseases.
One such case was a man who decided to take his own life by shooting himself in the head.
Apparently when he went to do the deed he pointed the end of the gun under his jaw and when he went to fire he missed his head and he blew off his jaw and mouth basically.
It was as bad as you can imagine. The lower portion of his face was mangled and most definitely not a pretty sight. His wife came to visit him which, as you can imagine, made for a very sad and awkward visit.
We don’t know the circumstances surrounding this man’s desire to leave the physical world but it must have been quite bad if he would go this far.
One thing I’ve learned is that for many people there is no happy ending like you see on TV. This is the real world. We can all only hope to help one another as much as possible while we are here to help make this world a little less miserable for us all.