The following is a guest article from Kathleen Baker:
Wouldn’t it be great if you could just do your job as a nurse practitioner, and do it the way you know is best? Unfortunately with most patients, you also have to answer to the family members and friends who have their own opinions about how your patient should be cared for. And while having family support is extremely important to a patient’s progress and well being, it would also be nice to have them support you during the whole process. Here are 10 tips for dealing with your patient’s opinionated family and friends.
1. Give them as much information as you can. Most family members just want to know what’s going on with their loved one, so don’t hide information that’s their right to know.
2.Be strict with visiting hours. Lay down the line early on in regards to visiting hours. They’re there for your patient’s protection and to give you a break without having to deal with family!
3.Try to understand things from their perspective. By considering their feelings, you’ll be better prepared to deal with any situation involving your patient and his or her family. Plus, if the family feels like you’re on their side, they’ll be kinder to you.
4.Don’t let them get to you. You have a job to do as a nurse practitioner, and chances are, you know how to do it better than anyone. If you feel overwhelmed or need assistance, ask for help from the doctors and other nurses involved, not the family.
5.Keep your cool. If you feel panicked, stressed or pessimistic about your patient’s condition, don’t let the family see you freak out. They’re counting on you to keep your cool and maintain control of the situation.
6.Don’t take things personally. Remember that family members are incredibly stressed out and worried about their loved one, and if they snap at you, it probably wasn’t meant maliciously. Concentrate on your job and ignore the rest.
This post was contributed by Kathleen Baker, who writes about the ultrasound tech school. She welcomes your feedback at KathleenBaker3212 at gmail.com