To Advocate or Not? That is the Question…

Is there ever a choice of whether we should or should not advocate for our patients? Even when they’re not the kindest, friendliest, or nicest…do we decide they are not worthy of advocacy? Some nurses face challenges that would place them in predicaments where they don’t necessarily want to help or advocate for their patient. Are nurses held to a standard of professionalism and ethical responsibility that supersedes any personal feelings they may have from an experience with patients? Yes, we expect that not every patient will be the nicest, the kindest, or on their best behavior, but we sat that aside, at least we should. I remember being told a story from a nurse about a patient who requested a different nurse because they did not want a Black nurse. After asking several questions to find out if there was a problem or if something was done to offend the patient, the patient stated the nurse should be mopping floors and cleaning, but not being a nurse. The patient was very sick and in the middle of her rant, she started going into respiratory distress. The nurse put an oxygen mask on while the patient was fighting her and telling her not to touch her. She called for respiratory and assistance from her colleagues. This was a very precarious situation to be in and someone without the passion and love for nursing and people could have easily walked out the room as if they didn’t recognize this patient going into to respiratory distress. Instead, she put any personal feelings she may have been feeling at that moment to the side to take care of her patient. Meanwhile, the patient was still fighting her because she didn’t have the right skin color. This story gave me chills and made me think of how truly awesome nurses are. We get up, put our scrubs on, and come in to a day of complete uncertainty to take care of anyone who walks through the door in need. That’s what I love about what I do and no one can do it better than nurses (HEART)!

Published by ShesThatRN

I am an RN working on my DNP, preparing to launch several aspects of my new business and writing and getting ready to publish my first book. I love to write so blogging seemed like a great way to naturally express myself and publish my journey as a nurse.

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