Nurses, Dr's & those in medical field..help me!!

MeghuneyMeghuney Posts: 4,263Registered Users
Okay, I am really mad as I am typing this. My grandfather has been very ill for a while now. He has congestive heart failure and diabetes. His heart was functioning at 20% a few weeks ago. He came to the hospital I work at because he had a hole in his foot (diabetes related). Well, a doctor ordered him to take 75 mg of some thyroid drug. An LVN on his floor gave him 750 instead of 75. :shock: :shock:

He started shaking, sweating profusely and finally he started vomiting brown stuff all over the place. He was rushed to ICU where he's still at currently. He has a tube up every hole on his body and he isn't doing so hot.

Well, his wife had told someone who asked about him (a hospital employee) exactly what happened. She asked to meet with the ICU director and the director actually told her: "I hear you've been talking with hospital employees about what happened and I wish you'd stop. I am also asking that you simply stop talking to the hospital staff about the situation."

Umm, are you serious?? I am so upset, I don't know what to do. But what really bugs me is that this woman had the nerve to say this. If something horrible happens to my loved one while in a hospital due to a mistake on the hospital's part, you're darned right I'm going to talk about it!

I guess I'm just venting AND wondering if I am being too hard on this woman. Is it common for a director of a department to request that someone who has been through something similar to not pass word around about it?

I'm just so pi$$ed!!!
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Comments

  • michellermicheller Posts: 470Registered Users
    I am so so sorry. I hope everything will be OK with your grandpa. Higs to you and him.

    As far as what the director told your grandma - as Whitney would say - Hell to the no! She can't tell your grandma to stop talking, give me a break, she is not an employee. As a matter of fact, if I were your grandma I would talk to as many people as possible now, before they are told by this director to shut up, so that she can find out as much info as possible about the situation. The director will clearly "lawyer up" quickly and tell all employees not to say anything.

    Its scary how often stuff like this happens in hospitals, I have friends who do med malpractice cases, and they tell me all the horror stories, and how common it really is.
  • shellibeanshellibean Posts: 4,500Registered Users
    That is terrible. I hope your grandpa gets better.
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  • MeghuneyMeghuney Posts: 4,263Registered Users
    I agree. I don't know that woman was thinking about. I guess she thought my grandfather's wife was an idiot or something...but I just can't believe the NERVE of that woman!! :evil:
  • PartyHairPartyHair Posts: 7,713Registered Users
    Plain and simple, she was trying to intimidate and frighten your grandmother.
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  • SystemSystem Posts: 39,060 Administrator
    Yep, she's trying to do damage control, but it's too late. She's scenting a malpractice suit.

    I sure hope they get your grandfather stabilized.
  • iris427iris427 Posts: 6,002Registered Users
    Meg that makes me SO mad!!!

    This woman is clearly more concerned about getting sued than your family's welfare. Who is her supervisor? I would be complaining all the way up the chain of command if a hospital made such a serious error and then had the NERVE to tell my family not to talk about it.

    Hospital workers are often told that when a mistake happens they are not to apologize or say anything that could come back at them in court. For example--if they apologize, a lawyer could use that as evidence that the hospital admitted to making a mistake. That's why this woman is acting this way. It's bullsh*t.

    I'm so sorry you are going through this and I hope your grandfather recovers.
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  • MeghuneyMeghuney Posts: 4,263Registered Users
    Honestly, it doesn't look like he will. They are saying it's TOTALLY unrelated, but now his kidneys have stopped working and he has some internal bleeding. They are wanting to open him up to see where the bleeding is coming from, but his wife isn't so sure about that. He's 82 (I think) and has already been through SO much. It's sad.

    They said this new condition is totally unrelated, but he was doing ok except for his heart condition and the hole in his foot until this incident. It's so sad! I cried when I saw him like that. He was so skinny..you could see the bones in his legs and he was in an "altered" coma. He was breathing through his mouth so his mouth was wide open and I just broke down.

    I remember being a little girl and him walking behind me when I first was learning how to ride my bike - him killing a snake in the yard one time when I was trying to play outside and him standing over me at dinner trying to make me eat my vegetables. Just thinking about it is making me so upset. :cry:
  • ManthaJayManthaJay Posts: 32Registered Users
    I really hope your grandfather will be ok.

    Nurses accidentally overdosed my dad on Dilantin a couple months ago, and sent him into convulsive seizures and into the ICU on a ventilator for 4 days. He's relatively ok now, and I hope you are as lucky as we were.

    Scary, isn't it, how how common these mistakes are. Don't let the hospital intimidate you, they are more afraid of you right now than you should be of them.
  • MeghuneyMeghuney Posts: 4,263Registered Users
    Really, their arrogance and disrespect has done NOTHING but made the situation worse for them. My grandfather's wife, my father, my aunt and I are far from the type who are easily intimidated. TRUST ME. :evil:
  • iris427iris427 Posts: 6,002Registered Users
    ManthaJay wrote:

    Scary, isn't it, how how common these mistakes are. Don't let the hospital intimidate you, they are more afraid of you right now than you should be of them.

    ITA Meg I'm so sorry for what you are going through. I'm glad to hear your family is not intimidated by all the white coats and hospital execs.

    Hospital mistakes like this are more common than people realize. It's scary to think about.
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  • maria_imaria_i Posts: 1,765Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    iris427 wrote:
    Hospital and doctors* mistakes like this are more common than people realize. It's scary to think about.

    ITA. I´ve learned this the hard way.


    Meg, I hope your grandpa recovers soon. I'll be praying for him.



    * This is mine, not from iris427 quote
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  • slinky1slinky1 Banned Posts: 1,612Banned Users
    iris427 wrote:

    Hospital workers are often told that when a mistake happens they are not to apologize or say anything that could come back at them in court. For example--if they apologize, a lawyer could use that as evidence that the hospital admitted to making a mistake. That's why this woman is acting this way. It's bullsh*t.

    I'm so sorry you are going through this and I hope your grandfather recovers.

    Ditto. This happens with supervisors and bosses at work, too (in more serious situations). They can't say certain things, and at all costs, they tend to try to make things look like your fault when it is between you and the company. It is too bad that things have gotten this way in some places.
    ;)
  • noellenoelle Posts: 377Registered Users
    Your poor grandfather! I'm so very sorry. I hope they get him comfortable and stabilized. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. And the way they treated your grandmother was deplorable. There is NO excuse for that behavior.
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  • Oregano  (formerly babywavy)Oregano (formerly babywavy) Posts: 5,297Registered Users Curl Neophyte
    Do you mean an LPN? I'm not entirely sure, but the rules for LPN's are getting pretty strict now, and I thought they had to double check the medication they're giving out w/ an RN on the floor before giving it to the patient. If that's the case then somebody was obviously not doing their job. Either the nurse didn't check w/ her superior, or the superior didn't enfore the rule.

    Anyway - that is a horrible story, and I would be completely LIVID if that person had the balls to try to tell me what I should and shouldn't say! At that point she should be lucky I wasn't calling a lawyer! I totally don't blame you for being so angry. I wish you lots of luck w/ your grandfather, Meg.
    ~ the artist formerly known as babywavy ~

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  • MeghuneyMeghuney Posts: 4,263Registered Users
    babywavy wrote:
    Do you mean an LPN? I'm not entirely sure, but the rules for LPN's are getting pretty strict now, and I thought they had to double check the medication they're giving out w/ an RN on the floor before giving it to the patient. If that's the case then somebody was obviously not doing their job. Either the nurse didn't check w/ her superior, or the superior didn't enfore the rule.

    Anyway - that is a horrible story, and I would be completely LIVID if that person had the balls to try to tell me what I should and shouldn't say! At that point she should be lucky I wasn't calling a lawyer! I totally don't blame you for being so angry. I wish you lots of luck w/ your grandfather, Meg.

    No, she was an LVN. A Licensed Vocational Nurse.

    And there are a lot of people that should have caught it...the pharmacy, RN and so forth and so on. It's crazy!!!
  • Oregano  (formerly babywavy)Oregano (formerly babywavy) Posts: 5,297Registered Users Curl Neophyte
    Meghuney wrote:
    babywavy wrote:
    Do you mean an LPN? I'm not entirely sure, but the rules for LPN's are getting pretty strict now, and I thought they had to double check the medication they're giving out w/ an RN on the floor before giving it to the patient. If that's the case then somebody was obviously not doing their job. Either the nurse didn't check w/ her superior, or the superior didn't enfore the rule.

    Anyway - that is a horrible story, and I would be completely LIVID if that person had the balls to try to tell me what I should and shouldn't say! At that point she should be lucky I wasn't calling a lawyer! I totally don't blame you for being so angry. I wish you lots of luck w/ your grandfather, Meg.

    No, she was an LVN. A Licensed Vocational Nurse.

    And there are a lot of people that should have caught it...the pharmacy, RN and so forth and so on. It's crazy!!!


    Ugh, I think that's even worse! That's like when I was 5 months pregnant w/ my daughter I got into an argument over the phone w/ a Medical Technician at my doctors office who refused to order my asthma medication (while I'm in the middle of an attack) because he didn't think I was managing my asthma properly.

    Some people just get a little too big for their britches.
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  • MeghuneyMeghuney Posts: 4,263Registered Users
    Wait..I mean that the woman who gave my grandfather the wrong medication was an LVN. The woman arguing with his wife is the Director over ICU.
  • fraufrau Posts: 6,130Registered Users Curl Neophyte
    meg,
    i am so sorry this has happened. please, read up on your grandfather's illness and the drugs he is taking and the side effects. be aware and tell your grandma in layman's terms to help her know what the heck is going on. be strong!

    i just want to add that that type of misake happens mainly because of the way a person writes. i know that it will not make you feel any better but perhaps knowing that the lpn may not be a total idiot:
    75 micrograms is written like this ug
    75 miligrams is written like this mg
    some doctors write mg when they meant ug, simply because they both start with m, i guess. sometimes a point looks like a 0 or vice versa.

    what helps is someone being familiar with drugs and their dosage.
    the average person usually takes about 200 to 800 mg of ibuprofen to relieve pain. if someone gave you a prescription to take 8000 mg it should send off a red flag because that would be like taking 40 pills. an informed lpn/nurse would know that and should've confirmed the doctor's request. i guess the key is knowing where the fault lies.

    also, they're going to say that nothing they've done in error is related to your grandpa's current condition to avoid a lawsuit.

    good luck.
  • MeghuneyMeghuney Posts: 4,263Registered Users
    frau wrote:
    meg,
    i am so sorry this has happened. please, read up on your grandfather's illness and the drugs he is taking and the side effects. be aware and tell your grandma in layman's terms to help her know what the heck is going on. be strong!

    i just want to add that that type of misake happens mainly because of the way a person writes. i know that it will not make you feel any better but perhaps knowing that the lpn may not be a total idiot:
    75 micrograms is written like this ug
    75 miligrams is written like this mg
    some doctors write mg when they meant ug, simply because they both start with m, i guess. sometimes a point looks like a 0 or vice versa.

    what helps is someone being familiar with drugs and their dosage.
    the average person usually takes about 200 to 800 mg of ibuprofen to relieve pain. if someone gave you a prescription to take 8000 mg it should send off a red flag because that would be like taking 40 pills. an informed lpn/nurse would know that and should've confirmed the doctor's request. i guess the key is knowing where the fault lies.

    also, they're going to say that nothing they've done in error is related to your grandpa's current condition to avoid a lawsuit.

    good luck.

    Girl..it wasn't written!!!! IT WAS AN ORDER in OVER THE PHONE. He (the doctor) said it TO the nurse and I still don't see how 75 even SOUNDS like 750!! My father is a pharmacist and we have gone over this and over this trying to see HOW this could have happened.

    And my grandfather's wife is my dad's age...she knows EXACTLY what to do and we're cheering her on.
  • fraufrau Posts: 6,130Registered Users Curl Neophyte
    uh...oh dang...
  • RheannaRheanna Posts: 2,614Registered Users
    Reading your post made me SO angry. I'm so sorry for what has happened. You've already received really good advice from others, and hell no, your grandma shouldn't have to keep quiet. I'd talk to as many people as possible in her situation.

    I am so sorry about your grandfather, and I hope they can get him stabilized. Your post about remembering him when he was little made me teary-eyed. I just lost my grandfather a couple weeks ago, PM me if you need to talk. ((((HUGS)))))
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  • PeppyPeppy Posts: 3,290Registered Users
    I will keep your family in my prayers.
  • curlyarcacurlyarca Posts: 8,449Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    I think LVN and LPN are the same. I think they are licensed by the same board.

    I don't know about Texas, Meg, but I don't think LPNs here in Louisiana are allowed to take orders over the phone.

    You may want to check up on that. And I would advise your family to not shut up about that. I agree with what has already been said: the director was trying to intimidate your grandmother into shutting up. A whole bunch of CYA, that's what.

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  • goldygoldy Posts: 5,463Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    curlyarca wrote:
    I think LVN and LPN are the same. I think they are licensed by the same board.

    I don't know about Texas, Meg, but I don't think LPNs here in Louisiana are allowed to take orders over the phone.

    hmm.. the lpn is licensed by the state bon and takes the nclex-pn.. i'm not sure what, if any, exam the lvn has to take.. we don't have any lvn's here in fl that i know of, they all bear the title of lpn and sit for the nclex-pn..

    i'm also not sure about the phone order.. meg, you could google texas state board of nursing and snoop around the site.. you should be able to find some info regarding the lvn and there practicing rights.. as babywavy said there may be policies in place that would prohibit her from giving a med without it being double checked by a rn.. but each state is different, and in my practice i've seen that each hospital is different in their policies as well..

    tell your grandma to keep doing what she's doing, being an advocate for her husband..

    also jcaho wants all verbal (including telephone) orders "read back" to prevent errors, so you can look into that as well..
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  • MeghuneyMeghuney Posts: 4,263Registered Users
    Interesting. Thanks so much for the information. I must pass this on to my father and grandmother. It may have been written, but I was told by a nurse in the hospital who'd been briefed on the incident that it was over the phone. I'll ask my dad and my grandfather's wife to be sure.
  • Oregano  (formerly babywavy)Oregano (formerly babywavy) Posts: 5,297Registered Users Curl Neophyte
    Meghuney wrote:
    Wait..I mean that the woman who gave my grandfather the wrong medication was an LVN. The woman arguing with his wife is the Director over ICU.


    No, ya I got it. :D
    ~ the artist formerly known as babywavy ~

    Please excuse any typos. For the time being, we are blaming it on my computer.
  • jfrizz2jfrizz2 Posts: 32Registered Users
    Nothing to add just giving you ((((HUGS)))) in this situation.
  • j'adorej'adore Posts: 1,966Registered Users Curl Neophyte
    Girl, the part that pisses me off is that this kind of crap happens all the time! I have heard way too many similar stories. :x Get in dey asses, girl!
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  • geekygeeky Posts: 4,995Registered Users
    I'm sorry your family has to deal with this on top of your grandfathers illness. I think your grandma should give them hell.

    {{{hugs}}}
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  • MeghuneyMeghuney Posts: 4,263Registered Users
    j'adore wrote:
    Girl, the part that pisses me off is that this kind of crap happens all the time! I have heard way too many similar stories. :x Get in dey asses, girl!

    Don't worry..we will. As soon as I get a break where I can talk freely, I'm calling my grandpa's wife to talk with her about everything. She's no dummy, but I want to make sure she's talked with a lawyer.

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