Up to the neck

I was coming back into the unit after fetching a patient from the recovery room. I was pushing the bed with a patient on it, when one of my other patients saw me on the corridor and asked if I could bring some towels for him. I told him I would come back for him.

After bringing the post op patient to his room, I plugged all the pumps and the bed and gave him the buzzer.  I gave him some post op teachings and quickly did some post op assessments. I then needed to document all these things in the computer. I needed to fix his file as well.

I was about to start documenting, when a co-nurse called. I was told that one of my patients is in severe pain and so I need to give him something to relieve his pain. Unfortunately, that co-nurse of mine was just kind enough to check my patient’s buzzing, and look for me, but was unable to give any medicines because she was quite busy herself.

I was on the way to the patient who was in pain to assess what kind of pain he has, when one of the patient relatives stopped me and asked some help to get her father off the commode. She said her father has been waiting for a nurse for a while to help push the old man out of the bathroom, but everyone seemed to be very busy.

The phone then rang and when I answered, I was asked to fetch my patient in Endoscopy. I requested the person on the other line to keep the patient for a couple of minutes more because I was still very busy, but I was told that they could not do that because the patient was so hungry and needs to come back to his room.

I needed some help but the charge nurse was busy as well, and all the other nurses were all drowned with their patients as well.

When workload is up to the neck, what should you do?

1.  Be calm.

2.  Do things one at a time. All tasks will be accomplished one by one.

3.  Be ready to give polite excuses for the delays of service.

4.  Never lose that smile on your face.

5.  Pray hard not to get interruptions anymore.

6.  Cross your fingers and wish yourself luck.

7.  Remember payday.

8.  And if everything else fails, there’s always a window where you can jump 🙂


This line I got from Facebook today:

 True strength of character is not just calculated by how well we manage to carry sizable loads under challenging conditions,but is perhaps better measured by our ability to remain kind and lightspirited even when we’re sure that we can’t bear the weight of one more ounce of life.


12 Responses to “Up to the neck”

  1. 1 te-ems
    May 30, 2010 at 5:43 pm

    nels, you – simply the best..
    that is exactly what we have to do..
    portfolio- reflect, and make a diffrence..ang go on..
    maybe i have to do the same..
    but i got a lot to scribble,more than what you experience,daily..
    might not be as good as what you had, so better to remember and forget.
    keep up the good work Nels..and stay as cool as you are..yap..


  2. 2 te-ems
    May 30, 2010 at 5:53 pm

    Nels, i have a better suggestion, window is not a good choice to jump,i think “THE ROOFTOP” if its only the window, you will be in our unit..i dont want to be a patient there..Nurses are overloaded, surely i will not be able to meet my demands as a patient..i will be a neuro -ortho case for sure…ha ha ha


    • 3 digitalcatharsis
      May 30, 2010 at 6:06 pm

      Hi Ate Ems, thanks for dropping some notes! I really appreciate it! This is our life in the unit, and at times, we just have to be strong-hearted and make fun out of it.


  3. 4 lorna
    May 31, 2010 at 11:05 am

    it sure is a busy world down there! nice that you take this matter on the funny side… managing the concern to yourself rather than blaming the hospital supervisors/administration for putting you in this kind of situation. but if this thing happens many times, the unit managers should do something to keep the staffing to a safe level.


  4. 5 Mhike
    June 1, 2010 at 12:21 pm

    That was a very cool attitude of dealing with a stressfull work environment! When worst gets into worst, we have to rely on ourselves and our ability to handle compromising situations. Keep writing, man!


  5. 6 linda
    June 4, 2010 at 11:01 am

    multi tasking – that’s what nurses do!


  6. 7 digitalcatharsis
    June 5, 2010 at 3:43 am

    Hi LORNA, thanks for dropping some lines! The staffing level is really a concern in the unit, especially since there have been many sick leaves lately. I always for the best.

    Hi MHIKE, being COOL in the workplace is the right word. I’ll keep on writing if you guys keep dropping by as well! Thanks!

    Hi LINDA, you are definitely right! Thanks for coming here!


  7. June 4, 2011 at 1:18 pm

    bilib na ko sayo nelson..dahil sa mga post mo baka lagi na ako mapapadaan dito..
    keep that pasensya ng mahabangmahaba..minsan na lang ako nakakakita ng taong my mahabang pasensya..


  8. June 22, 2011 at 1:11 pm

    natawa ako dun sa there’s a window where we can jump hehehe! but seriously, I learned a lot from you who is being so mapasensya… yay! I hope I could also do that when I am in the midst of my angry mood. 🙂


  9. June 24, 2011 at 7:15 am

    Patience is indeed a virtue, and nursing is not for the impatient! When we have to deal with so many problems and personalities like this, and time seems to be running short, a simple prayer can help. 🙂 God bless the nurses who work hard!


  10. 12 kat
    June 27, 2011 at 7:37 am

    ayay, ano ba yan…mabuti sana kung madami yang katawan mo…ang hirap din pla ng work nyo no?


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