Thursday, March 10, 2011

It's what we do

 On a recent Saturday, Kim C asked me if I wanted to come in early for Sunday.  "They're real short staffed,” she said.  I told her that was not a good selling point but I agreed.  Later as I was setting the alarm for 2AM I blamed my decision on low blood sugar. 
This will be good I told myself.  I'll get to see some of the night shift that I only see in passing and it'll be slow so early on a Sunday morning.
So, I get this patient who weights 400 lbs and has been having chest pain since Friday, diabetic, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, smoker, amputated toes, and open wounds on the feet.  Negative blood work but abnormal EKG (ya think?), they need to be transferred for a cardiac cath.
It all went well, but by 0600 my easy Sunday morning was shot and I had another 9 hours to go. What can I say, that's what we do.
"I endorse the union effort wholeheartedly, both privately and publicly,” said a well-respected cardiologist, "Nurses are the greatest patient advocates. Whatever makes the nurses stronger makes the hospital better." Another highly respected physician, Dr Paul Deutsch has spoken out twice in the newspaper in support of Backus nurses.
The comments on the Day website after the March 4 article on diversion indicate that the view that administration has lost touch with reality.
On Monday, some of our members met with state senator Edith Prague in Hartford. On Wednesday we met with governor Dan Malloy in Norwich.
Administration is increasingly being seen as out of touch with the staff and reality. We have become the voice of reason, increasing accepted as the only sane leadership of the hospital.
This is an awesome responsibility, one we need to contemplate and prepare for.
But we have contemplated it. We have prepared for it. We live it every day at the bedside. We advocate every day on the floor. We are ready. We are willing. We are able. It's what we do.
We are accepting our role as partners at Backus Hospital. There is only one question remaining, will administration step up and accept their role in this partnership?

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