The night from hell...

  1. I am officially unemployed at the moment. Today is the first day of our strike...I worked last night and was in charge. How in the world did I end up being in charge the night before our strike? It was so busy...we got a 30 weeker admission and 32 week twins. Then one of our babies passed away. He was 24 weeks when he was born and 138 days old. So sad...he was a twin, the sister was home already and doing well. The parents were there til late last night, and mom got to hold him even though he was really sick. They left, and soon afterwards when I was going around getting report his O2 sat was in the 40's for a while, then it dipped down into the 30's...his heart rate was 90's, then low 100's...normal for him is 02 sat of 90% and up, and heart rate of around 130's to 150's. Just went downhill from there. We started doing chest compressions around 3:25...gave several doses of epinephrine, gave sodium bicarb, 2 boluses of normal saline...no improvement. The parents didn't even make it home when we called them...they turned right back. Oh my gosh, it was so sad...after 30 minutes the attending MD told the parents that there wasn't anything more we could do for him because he wasn't responding. The mom was saying "no, no, please don't stop. tell me what to do, i'll do it if you're tired...." I almost started crying. But at least the poor baby is with God now...he went through so much. He should have gone a long time ago. It was so surreal...he's been sick for a long time, but I don't know....I was the one who wraped him up in the shroud...So yeah, that was my night.

    This morning, we walked out at 7:30am...we gave report to the head nurses and left. They didn't let the SCABS come in yet while we were still there. There were a lot of people picketing outside, and channel 4, 9, NJN, 7 were all there broadcasting. So tune in later on today, you might see me picketing. Around 10am I went to put more money in the car...and I realized that I was still wearing the beeper that the charge nurse has. Oops. So our tech had to come downstairs to get it. She said that there were about 10 nurses up there, plus our head nurses....scary because we have a couple of really sick babies on the unit. If this was 2 weeks ago, it would have been fine, but now our acuity is really high. She said they were all old nurses who didn't even know how to use a glucometer or a syringe pump. My friend spoke with the mother of the baby that she primaries...the mom said that she had to tell the nurse how to put her baby's feeding up. She had to show her how to use the syringe pump and that the nurse almost gave the baby formula when the baby was only taking breast milk. How scary is that. And there is only one head nurse that has done bedside care before. One head nurse who knows how things go on our unit. I feel sorry for the babies and their families. All because the stupid hospital doesn't want to change our benefits. They're paying how much money to the SCABS to work our units, pay for extra security so that nothing happens at the picket line, losing so much money because the ER is not taking any more admissions (and our NICU isn't taking any transports - they tried to transport a 29 week baby to use last night and we had to defer the baby to St. Peter's) all because the hospital doesnt' want to give us a better health plan. And the media is making it seem like we make $90,000 average and that we just want more money. I don't know ANYONE that has made close to $90,000. All lies...ack it makes me so mad. I'm glad that our hospital lost its Magnet designation because of this strike. We're one in four hospitals in the U.S. who got re-designated for magnet status 3 times in a row. For those of you who don't know, Magnet is given to a hospital that has excellent nursing care. Excellent nursing care, and they can't even provide the nurses with ok health coverage. My co-worker's son was in a snowboarding accident last Feb...the insurance didn't cover ANYTHING because snowboarding is considered a "hazardous activity". They had to pay it all out of pocket. The helicopter ride alone from the mountain to the nearest hospital in PA was almost $20,000. Um...isn't football a hazardous activity? And what about driving? Ah, it makes me so mad. Ok, need to get to sleep...Sorry for rambling...I'm just tired...I was practically sleepwalking while we were picketing earlier.
     
  2. Awwww, sorry you had to go through all of this.*hugs* Take care of yourself.
     
  3. Oh my gosh, that's so sad! I hope for you and all of the mothers and babies that the strike is over with quickly. What a disaster!
     
  4. I am so sorry to hear how things turned out. The helpless infants in the NICU definitely are in my prayers. This is such a scary situation. I also hope you find work soon. Hopefully the hospital will resolve things. Please let us know how you're doing.
     
  5. I hope everything works out for the best. Hopefully the media will see that there are so many nurses who go unrecognized, endure horrific working hours and conditions, and don't complain until its unbarrable. I admire all of the work that you and your co-workers do and hopefully it all works out
     
  6. Wow, and that's why I could never be a nurse. I couldn't handle things like that! I hope the strike is over with soon and you and your co-workers get what you want. The hospital needs to realize that it takes a special person to do that job as most of us wouldn't be able to handle all the extreme highs and lows that come along with it. Good luck!!
     
  7. Oh Michelle, I feel so bad for you- you care SO much about your job. I love when I hear or see people care so much. Don't give up- nurses deserve to be treated well! You are great people and I have so much respect for you!
     
  8. OMG- that is just horrible.
    I hope everything works out in the end.
     
  9. oh God... i'm sooo sorry to hear your stories.
    i hope everything's going fine for you.

    big hugs from all of us & take care of yourself
     
  10. hope that this nightmare ends soon.. so many ppl need appropriate care... and when management doesn't respond accordingly.. unfortunately, the patients/clients/customers suffer..
     
  11. Oh goodness, you need BIG HUGS!!! What a horrible night! Don't let the media, hospital beat you down. As far as I'm concerned hospital administrators are all blood suckers.
     
  12. I once wanted to be a neonatologist, until I went on a walk-through with one of the neonatologists at JHU Hospital. I couldn't do it...I couldn't even look at the babies, it broke my heart so bad.

    I can't ever imagine myself having to tell a family something like you did today. You must be a very strong person :sad: I hope that your strike doesn't take a long time so you all can get back to your jobs and those that need you!
     
  13. I think nurses are the m ost unreconized, uncompensated people around. I have dealt with wonderful nurses in the hospital and from my sister being a nurse she told me stories of how horrible they are treated. I think the worst I have seen is no respect from some doctors, I really don't know how they do it. I hope your hospital gets it together and realizes how cost effective it is to pay you what you deserve. You think of the money a hospital wastes on other things and the salaries of the top guns......
     
  14. aww, i'm so sorry to hear about this. But I seriously pray that everything works out for everyone in the end.
     
  15. *huGzZ*

    hope ya feel better!