Uh, you know how I said I love my job in my last post? Well I think that has jinxed me, this week has been somewhat challenging! I’ve been sworn at, called useless, punched, and had a pillow chucked at me (maybe the patient could tell I was tired) all by patient’s.
Something I’ve come to realise is that patient expectation is somewhat like the expectation at a 5* hotel! Surely you wouldn’t complain that a perfectly normal apple is too much like a cooking apple so you would like a replacement in normal life – I mean starving children in Africa and all that! Just eat the damned apple!!! Also, the call bell is not a toy and can’t be answered immediately all the time! Today I had a patient bleeding out in the loo and was trying to stop them from passing out whilst another patient decided to shout at me for ignoring his bell – prioritising is key, and I’m sure you’ll agree that the patient in the loo was more important at this point. To make matters worse, when I finally was able to answer this bell guess what the issue was….. ‘can you convert 100kg into stone?’ um yeah sure, im just a walking calculator… you had the audacity to have a go at me for not answering this trivial, in comparison the other situation, question when you want me to convert weight! It took all my might to smile at this patient and politely say no, albeit through gritted teeth. But my conscience hit me and I decided to convert the weight on an app via my phone and tell the patient, not so much as a thank you! tssk This same patient then decides to call me useless when I put the blanket on their top half but they actually wanted it on their bottom half. I know I should have asked, but communication is a two way thing and they could have just said where they wanted it… am I also a mind reader as well as walking calculator?
Also, why is it thought that only HCA’s can answer bells??? There are only two of us on the ward and this morning was hectic. On my side 3/4 were dependent on full care so I had to do all the washes myself which took until the end of my shift to complete whilst trying to do obs, meals, and answer bells around it! My obs were 3 hours late and when I finally had a chance to do them, a doctor ushered me off the computer, then someone told me I needed to help with lunch… ONLY 1 FRIGGING PAIR OF HANDS!!! I love it when someone kindly points out the bell is ringing (actually it’s helpful if someone is ringing silently) like you can’t hear it yourself. The likelihood is I’m not answering because I’m busy still trying to do obs 3 hours late!!!!!!!!!! You can hear it tooo so go and answer it!!!!!!! Phones are exactly the same!!!!!!
And also another patient when I asked to sit them out in their chair so I could do their bed and wash them refused in order to have a coffee, that’s fine. But obviously I can’t wait on them to drink it, I have to get on with other tasks but it seemed every time I started one thing, another beckoned. I forgot about this patient’s bed but a nice reminder wouldn’t have gone unmissed as I did ask the patient to do so when they had finished. So i don’t expect a ‘I’VE BEEN WAITING SINCE BREAKFAST, YOU SHOULD HAVE DONE MY BED HOURS AGO, DO YOU KNOW WHAT JUST FORGET IT, LEAVE IT’ when I ask to do it later in the day. Yes the bed should have been done hours ago in the normal world BUT again it wasn’t the top of my to do list in terms of priority and they were not the only patient in the ward.
Literally some people are so ungrateful, like the a relative of a patient who I sat with for an hour feeding 4 BOWLS OF PORRIDGE!! Not everyone would have sat there with the patient and made sure they were full. Some would stop at the first bowl because time is just not on our sides. It did mean I lost an hour that would have meant I wouldn’t have been so run off of my feet. But the relative still had time to complain that they hadn’t received a hospital restaurant voucher… um, I wouldn’t complain for that, I mean if it was the ritz restaurant then maybe but come on, it’s a hospital!
I didn’t even get a break until an hour until the end of my shift, I started at 6am so as my mum would say ‘I felt so weak, I could drop’. My hands were actually shaking from such low blood sugar so I had some of the ward chocolates and a fruit drink to try and bring my bm up. I should have seen what it was, I’m not even diabetic but I bet I was in a hypo! On my break, I couldn’t have got off the ward any faster, indulging in fatty food is what I do when stressed so burger and chips it was… I even took an extra cheeky 5 minute break but you know what, I think I deserved it!
Although there are patients like this, a few are lovely like the one I have in mind now who is so grateful, helpful and just lovely! even gives me a little wink every now and again which when feeling down is the little pick me up to remind me why I first loved this job!
One last thing prospectivemedics, never get on the wrong side of a nurse by saying ‘you only have 4 patients (actually 6), I have like 22’. It won’t get you anywhere! Today at the nurses station this was said and there was uproar because the doctor was implying they worked harder than the nurses, but nurses and HCA’s have so much more patient care which is demanding. This poor doctor also said this to the wrong nurse, the most liked one on the ward, so I think they will be blacklisted hahaha
OK rant over! Do you ever have days like this when everything just seems to be awful? For me, I think lack of sleep and exhaustion is intensifying everything!
Until next time…