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Poor work ethics and bad nursing practices of co-worker
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Can you help this person? They have a problem with
Unethical Behavior and need some advice.


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This is the original problem from an employee...
I am an LPN and there is an RN at my work place who has for several months now who has continually failed to perform her assigned duties. This happens every time she works not just once in a while. This nurse fails to chart and follow up on resident's health issues, she fails to do her treatments, in fact she never even signs her treatment book as if she totally is oblivious to it's existence.

This nurse fails to respond to CNA reports of a resident requiring her immediate care, if she does respond the CNAs say they must approach her about it multiple times and maybe after several hours she may go see what the resident is needing help with. This person has been seen by myself and other employees sleeping for long periods of time. She fails to assist the other nurses in performing tasks that are required to be completed on that shift. When and if she does make any attempt at charting on a resident she fails to provide vital signs and assessments required by the facility. She fails to enter O2 sat levels, blood pressures, pulses etc in the medication administration record as required, however she does initial the space.

This type of activity has been ongoing for months and the longer it goes on the angrier I become about it. She also routinely takes advantage of another nurse, who btw is 70 years old and is a rocking good nurse. She knows that if she calls this nurse and asks her to work for her she will not say no. The elderly nurse has been counciled many times by the supervisors for working so many overtime hours and was directly told not to pick up any extra hours for other employees. Still when the slacking nurse asks her to work for her she cannot say no. Furthermore the older nurse refuses to report the slacker for being absent. Just a few days ago the slacker and the older nurse were scheduled to work the same shift. The slacker never called and never showed up until 4 1/2 hrs into the shift, then she announced she had to leave in 2 1/2 hours. In the time she was there she did nothing more than change 2 or 3 names on our report sheets and supposedly passed some medications for one out of four halls.

Honestly considering the poor, and what I consider unethical working practices, I have my doubts that when this nurse is supposedly passing her medications she is even doing it at all. And I have heard complaints from nurses who have relieved her midshift and mid-medpass that if she passed any meds they were very few.

Now this job is not this nurses primary job. She only works PRN yet usually is scheduled 1 or 2 days a week. And being PRN she is able to choose what days she is willing to work. Yet she often calls and asks to trade days with other employees saying she worked her other job that day and is too tired. And if she does get someone to trade with her she makes attempts to get out of that obligation as well. The older nurse I spoke of before has lost out on many days off because of this. And I know this woman knows exactly what she is doing, and even though that is taking advantage of a co-worker she has no shame in doing this on a regular basis.

I have thought that by now the supervisors would have figured out that this woman was not doing her job. There are so many things that to me stand out snd should be obvious. However, I have looked for signs that this nurse was councelled and I have seen no changes in her work ethics. I have openly complained to other nurses about this nurse hoping she would hear about it and realize somebody had her number. I have seen no evidence of that either. In fact when I complain about her others open up and share their stories and complaints about her with me.

I really want to go to my boss and tell her what is going on. However, I have never been good at approaching my supervisors, I have some sort of fear of authority figures stemming way back into childhood. Yet at the same time I am concerned about the welfare of my residents and am very upset that they are not receiving good nursing care. This woman is an RN for crying out loud, she knows better and should be setting an example. She has been a nurse over 20 yrs.

What advise I am looking for is how to go about approaching my boss without sounding angry and bitter and coming off as if I am perfect or something. I know all nursing have short comings and that somedays all the work just doesn't get done. I have been a nurse 13 yrs I am quite aware that I am not perfect nor do I claim to be. I have only ever made a complaint about a fellow co-worker one other time. And when I did so I did not feel my supervisor listened to what I had said to her, nor made any efforts to investigate. I really don't want to go through that again. I want to be heard, taken seriously, and the situation investigated, and hopefully resolved. I am not to sabatage this person honestly, but I think we reap what we sow and should suffer the consequences of our own actions when they are the wrong actions. I believe she doesn't even consider the consequences. I mean how can one go for months on end not doing their job as a nurse and provide good patient care??? And then how can one do this and live with their conscience??? Perhaps she has none. Anyways, please help give me some ideas on how to bring this up to my supervisor. Thanks  
Employee: saintplatypus
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A visitor of this site offers this as a possible solution...
I think I would make an appointment with your supervisor right away. Sit down and write what you have witnessed this nurse doing. Make sure your list is precise and detailed, and if you can list dates and times. Don't get personal when you speak to your supervisor just let her know you are worried about the patients care. It is VERY important you do this, not only for you, but for your fellow workers, and mostly for the poor sick patients that deserve the best care that can be given. Know that you are doing the right thing - the ETHICAL thing. Hopefully you will not have to deal with this for very long, but it is very important you do what is right for the patients that need your full attention - and not be distracted by some co-worker's bad work behavior. Good Luck and Blessings!
Contributor: visitor
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A visitor of this site offers this as a possible solution...
I'm in school to become a CNA and we are learning that it is not right to slack on the job as it is dangerous to the patient. If something bad happens because this RN was not reported, you are also responsible for the incident. Don't let the fact that she is a RN prevent you from doing what's right. You need to tell on her.
Contributor: visitor
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A visitor of this site offers this as a possible solution...
You must tell management immediately. The nurse possibly not giving medications and leaving patients in distress are both acts that could result in a serious incident. You may want to write a letter to the administrator of the facility as well. You should keep your emotions out of the conversation but should emphasize that the behavior of the nurse is setting the company up for a major law suit. Usually administrators listen when you talk $$$. Though patient safety and well being is the first priority money always gets someone's attention right away and if it gets results for the patients it's worth the effort. If the supervisor and management are not willing to listen to your complaint or the complaints of others, perhaps go to a state nursing board or the area agency on aging which sends representatives to long term care facilities to advocate for patients. The state will definitely step in if the area agency ombudsman finds something to report or something suspicious.

In the mean time, you may want to consult with EEOC in your state. It is possible that if you complain you may be let go, though in most cases administrators ans supervisors will do something about the slacking employee if the case is serious enough. There are laws that protect you in such instances, even if the complaint is not about discrimination, if you are let go for doing your job (and the way I see it reporting the situation is a moral and legal obligation), you may have a case.
Contributor: visitor
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Disclaimer: The advice displayed within this site is not legal advice and is not to be taken as legal or professional advice in any way. Any communication within this forum is intended only to discuss a number of possible options. All ratings have come from site visitors and reflect a peer review only.


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