Thursday, February 10, 2011

Thursday Top Ten #2

Top ten ways to know that the nurses hate you  (especially ICU, ER and inpatient nurses):
This one's for you, On Call RN. . . .

Way #10

They scowl and answer every single one of your questions with, "Wh-aat?"

Way #9

They don't save you when you're getting ready to majorly screw up in front of the attending (unless of course it involves a patient's safety.) Otherwise, you're on your own. Oh yeah, and if they really hate you, they ask a question on rounds in front of the attending that they know 100% for sure that you don't have the foggiest notion how to answer. (Note: Usually involves dropped balls or screw ups on your part.)

Way #8

They page you every hour on the hour between the hours of midnight at six A.M.

Way #7

They don't offer you any of their food. (The nurses always have the best food--especially ICU nurses!)

Way #6

They approach the attending or the fellow with all of their questions or suggestions instead of talking to you.

Way #5

They approach the medical student with all of their questions and suggestions instead of talking to you.

Way #4

They start off all conversations with you by saying the words, "Look, I'm not sure if you realize it, but. . . "

Way #3

The nurses lounge gets quiet every time you enter.

Way #2

The nurse stands there staring at your for thirty seconds after everything you say, kind of like you're stupid.

and . . .drum roll please. . . . the #1 way to know for sure that the nurses hate you. . . . . .

They tell you.


Pearl of wisdom from a doctor who has made good with the nurses:

Love thy nurses. Why? Because NURSE = butt-saver, hands-on-deck, extra-brain, person-who-remembers-next-step-in-a-code, shoulder-to-cry-on, cheerer-upper, differential-diagnosis-suggester, back-into-reality-smacker, team-mate-extraordinaire, knower-of-fine-details, wind-beneath-tired-wing, wingman-or-wingwoman, explainer-of-drips-that-you-are-clueless-about, teacher, and best of all, friend. 

So here's to all the nurses. . . . . .and to those of us who work with them.  May they always share their food with you and never hate your guts!


  1. Thank you so much for this. As a nurse with a lot of years and experience under my belt, I really resent those young doctors who don't listen to me just because I'm a nurse. And I have to be honest and admit that when I don't have confidence in them, I do #6 and approach the consultant or registrar directly (although I'm tactful enough to not do it in front of them).

    And I will add that the vast majority of doctors work well with nurses as part of a team and do become friends, and it is only a small minority who treat us as inferior beings or handmaidens - they are the ones we use to sharpen our claws ;-)

  2. The nurses LOVE my husband. His mother has been a PICU nurse at a children's hospital for over 25 years. She always told him to be nice to the nurses. It has served him well all these years. I have ran into nurses [they recognize me from our Xmas card] that he has worked with on numerous occasions and they always have nice things to say about him.

  3. My advice to new medical oncology fellows is to be nice to the nurses who will save your A** when you screw up. We love to learn from you, so let's do that both ways, OK? I am sure the nurses love you Miss Manning!

  4. hahahaha Another glorious post. I am printing this and the 10 ways to make your life miserable in the hospital... it will be going on the bulletin board in my break room because our nurses could use a good laugh. It's true. ICU nurses know how to cook and we love to share so that is a great gauge. Still my favorite is #1, #2 and #6.
    Thanks for the laugh! :)


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