- Nurses told Business Insider there are some things they wish they could tell patients, but can’t.
- Nurses wish they could tell patients not to trust every doctor you meet, and that some only have around three minutes to get medical history and drug information.
- Nurses also wish they could tell patients not to treat them like maids in a hotel, and that they have bad days, too.
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Nurses interact with patients day in and day out.
While most nurses love working with others, some wish they could tell their patients more about what it’s really like caring for them.
For instance, nurses told Business Insider that they wish they could tell patients to stop treating the hospital like a hotel, and to stop demanding their immediate attention at all times.
Some nurses also wish they could tell patients to be wary of doctors, or to get their children vaccinated.
Here are 10 things nurses wish they could tell their patients.
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Nurses don’t automatically love the doctors they work with.
"When we say you have a right to ask for a second opinion, that means I personally wouldn’t let that doctor touch me," said David, an OR nurse in Arizona.
Patients can be in the dark about whether they have a bad doctor. A 2018 investigation in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel found at least 500 physicians who have been publicly disciplined or barred from practicing medicine in one state practice in other states because of an outdated, incomplete federal database that tracks doctor transgressions.
A hospital isn’t a hotel.
Many nurses said that patients think hospitals are a hotel, and treat nurses like maids who can stop work and grab a pillow at a moment’s notice.
"Some really think the hospital is a hotel and we are just waiting to be at their service," said a nurse from Pennsylvania who wished to stay anonymous. "I will be walking down the hallway with blood from another patient and people will really stop me and ask me to bring them new sheets right now."
Nurses can’t immediately tend to a sore throat when there are patients with more serious injuries.
Other nurses said patients with lesser illnesses don’t always understand nurses need to tend to more intense injuries first.
Mayte, a nurse in Iowa, said she wishes she could tell patients they are not always the priority: "I could have another patient that needs me now or else something bad could happen," she told Business Insider. "I’m not brushing off their needs, but it’s not a priority."
Sean, a nurse in New Mexico, wishes he could tell patients that their sore throat isn’t something a nurse will prioritize: "The guy that we dragged in the front door who’s been stabbed multiple times is an emergency. Sit down and wait or, better idea, go to your primary care or an urgent care in the morning."
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