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Doubting Myself

Posted Nov 07 2009 10:01pm
I just completed a set of night shifts. I was really frustrated last night...because of A nurse in this haematology/oncology ward. I am happy if she wanna tell me what to do...but to say that she's not happy with my instructions until i speak to the consultant? now....does she think i'm rubbish? or what?

There was a very sick young boy last night. I told her I was going to check his blood gases (ie, to check the oxygen level in his body). And this nurse said, "Oooh...no...you cant do blood gases. It's not appropriate in these patients...we do not do blood gases in this ward."

I was like what? How can you say that? How do you know its appropriate or not? It isn't very helpful to say such a thing especially when somebody is so ill. Blood gases are indicated if a patient is extremely short of breath, and is not able to maintain his own oxygen saturations such as this poor sick boy.

So then, I thought, right, maybe I'm not doing it right....I doubted myself...which was so silly of me. Anyhow, I contacted the consultant to inform him about this ill patient, just to inform that about what I have done so far and if he has anything else to add. He also advised me to check his blood gas....

Later, she refused to give this poor gentleman paracetamol until I speak to the consultant first?! Now....i think that's just taking the mickey. Apparently this man has been sneaking some paracetamol of his own, and has been told against doing so. But that story was a good 3 days old. If worried about an accidental overdose, his LFTs and coagulation screen would be off by now. But they aren't. His temperature has been sky high all day and night...clearly he hasn't taken any! She said she's not happy to give him paracetamol, unless the consultant gives the heads up. Luckily it was nearly 7 in the morning when this incident happened...and I didn't feel too guilty contacting the consultant. Imagine, making the phone call at 3 am???

We were all trying to work in the patient's best interest, but I didn't understand why it didn't feel that way.

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