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Category Archives: The News

Nursing Nightmare

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Of all the horror stories that came out of Japan after the earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear crisis, this story on CNN hit me the hardest.  As nurses, we want to do anything and everything for our patients.  We skip lunch (and even potty breaks) to make sure our patients are safe and comfortable.  We would do almost anything to save them.  I could never imagine leaving a patient behind to die.  But that’s just what Fumiko Suzuki had to do.

As the tsunami hit Takata Hospital, Fumiko saved those she could.  As she watched the massive wave approach the hospital, she ran up the stairs to safety, leaving behind those she did not have time to save.  After the tsunami, she stayed and cared for those who survived.

I cannot even imagine the pain she must go through reliving that moment.  I hope she knows she made the only decision she could have at the time and that she can “forgive” herself for having done what she had to. I’ll be praying for her.

A deadly bedpan?

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I came across a horrible news story today.  It’s a nursing home story that involves a bedpan. Apparently a nursing home resident was left on a bedpan for 24 hours.  He developed a sore that ended up killing him.  Oddly, the person who put him on the bedpan is the owner of the nursing home.  I find that very odd.  In nursing homes the aides do pretty much everything.  While there has to be a registered nurse on staff, the nurse does very little patient care.  When a nurse does interact with a patient, it’s usually to do something that aides are not certified to do such as give a medication or do a physical assessment.  So why is the owner, of all people, putting a patient on a bedpan at all?

According to the article I read, the incident occurred on Christmas Day. Perhaps they were so short on staff the owner had to come in?  Were staffing levels dangerously low?

The owner was convicted today of felony abuse.  It won’t bring back the patient, but it’s a step in the right direction.

Interesting News Story about Nursing and Facebook

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Many hospitals, including mine, no longer allow facebook on the premises.  And here’s one of the reasons why…

Ridiculous Case

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The New York Times reports on a very disturbing case in Texas.  A doctor allegedly engaged in all sorts of malpractice.  When a nurse reported him to the medical board, she lost her job and he kept his.  Sad but not that surprising.  What’s surprising is that she is now being prosecuted for reporting him even though investigators and hospital administrators admit that the doctor engaged in malpractice.

The prosecutor claims that she was trying to diminish his reputation.  Really? It’s not like she went to the newspaper.  She reported him to the medical board who could then open an investigation on their own.  Hopefully this prosecutor will wake up and drop the charges.  Nurses should always feel free to report unsafe behavior.