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How to Alienate the Nursing Staff in Just One Shift

Posted on Wed, Oct 08, 2014
How to Alienate the Nursing Staff in Just One Shift

By Christine Kelly, RN, BSN, MBA

Physicians know their behaviors impact the team, but they may be surprised at how, how often and how much. This survey of nurse executives and nursing leaders revealed a number of interesting patterns to what makes nurses like or dislike working with a particular physician. The physicians that nurses like to work with most are those who make quick decisions on patient dispositions and keep the department moving; who are more adequate than superstars, but pleasant with good customer service skills; and who interact freely with nurses on any topic (including those unrelated to patient care).

  • Here are a few actions that can make the nurses try to avoid working on your shift:
  • Doesn’t say hello/ acknowledge you
  • Leaves chart in rack without saying anything
  • Expects you to stop what you are doing
  • Oblivious to patients waiting
  • Tends to order every possible test
  • Leaves you to close the loop with patients

At the heart of it, nurses like good physicians who understand and embrace their important role in the patient care team.

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