Saturday, February 27, 2010

Collective low morale

3 incidents happened over the last 3 weeks. A place-mark to note the events. It is not the appropriate time to write more about the matters, as the storms have not settled yet.
  • 10-Feb-2010: Febrile fit case that was sent to ICU, mentioned on-the-fly here.
  • 18-Feb-2010: Strange smelling drinking water, which brought back collective unhealed memories of another water related complaint.
  • 21-25 Feb-2010: Another febrile fit case, ?UTI, that became lymphadenitis.
Add to the above, the recent low number of paediatric patients resulted in adult patients of various acuity (including one on telemetry) overflowing into the paediatric ward. The collective morale of the staff at work is low this week, especially amongst the senior SNs who had to bear the brunt of the heat. They felt that the management, as represented the comments from ADON G, is not giving staff the necessary support. This includes the nice night-shift senior SN R whose previous night nursing partner resigned with 24 hours notice just a few months back. I have personally heard all except 1 of the senior SNs verbalising plans to leave. This time around, it's not merely their venting of frustration. Some are already paving their way in that direction.

IMHO, the incidents are not caused by poor nursing. However ADON G's comments, as mentioned by the senior SNs, seem to push the blame in the nurses' direction. [Ironically, even the consultant doctors are not blaming the nurses but are fighting on our side.] As a result, the younger SNs and the ENs are worried about the what-ifs. After several near misses, what-if one day a near miss becomes a hit, and our individual nursing license is affected? The older staff are questioning why they would want to suffer so much stress when they can afford to retire and enjoy life.

As for me, I had 2 thoughts on my mind.
  1. I am not surprised by the senior SNs' reaction to ADON G's comments. My personal experience of her lecturing sucks.
  2. I hope that the senior SNs will stay around longer, at least till after I relocate to Canada. In some ways, their presence and support make ward nursing more bearable.

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