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Saturday, June 19, 2010

A report about day shift

So after working 10 years as a night shift RT I've finally graduated to days. I've now been on days for the past four months. It was actually a tough transition at first. It was hard getting used to all the people being around, and the LIGHT.

Yes, that's right, after working the graveyard shift pretty much on a regular basis since 1991, I feared the sunlight might make me melt. However, that has yet to happen. I'm still in tact.

When I started this blog I had the following in my banner: " I work solo nights and prefer it that way. The dragons are sleeping at night, if you know what I mean."

Ah, the dragons. You know who they are. They are the bosses who scream every time a dot isn't crossed or t dotted. They are the ones who are more concerned over paper work than saving lives. They, as you may know, are perhaps former RTs and RNs who have morphed into intractable dragons.

So now I work with the dragons. I wasn't sure how this would go, but I've learned as long as you say what they want to hear you're all right. So long as you understand their way of thinking, you're all right. You can question them, but you better watch your step or.... ROOOOAAAAAAAAAR!!!!!

Trust me when I say this, when you work for a small hospital, and every dime counts, the roar is a lot louder than it is at bigger hospitals, or hospitals that are merged. I know this because I work with RTs and RNs who have also worked at large hospitals.

So, now here's the big difference I've observed working days versus working nights. On nights, I grumbled and griped about doing useless breathing treatments. On nights, however, I worked by myself, and I had to do all the useless breathing treatments on the floors AND all the useless breathing treatments and EKGs and Holters and etc. in the emergency room and everywhere else in the hospital.

Thus, if I didn't have to do all the useless treatments, I might have a good night. So I was more likely to complain. Although, be it said, my complaining more or less came out in the form of humor as you can tell from this blog. "Allbetterol Anyone?"

On nights, when there are very few procedures, I didn't have anything to do and could just sit around and blog or gossip or whatever I wanted to do. And there were no bosses to tell me what to do. And, no matter how slow it got, I never lost hours because nobody wants to work nights.

On days things are different. On days, if it's slow, one of us goes home. So, since it's slow around here quite a bit lately, I've lost at least 8 hours a week. That's not good. So, I find that when I work days I actually want useless treatments.

I'll repeat that last sentence: On days I find that I actually get happy when a doctor orders a useless treatment. I want them because it means I will not have to be sent home. I will not lose hours.

On nights I didn't care how many patients there were. On days I want at least 10 patients so both of us day RTs can get our hours.

Other than that, all the expected changes have occurred in me. Yep, I'm not so exhausted every day. After about 1.5 months of being on days I started to feel like a different person. "Gosh," I said to my wife one morning, "Is this what it's like to feel normal."

So, now that I work days, I'm less grumpy (to be expected), am more wide awake, get much more sleep, don't complain (as much) about useless treatments (just tolerate them), have learned that the dragons are tolerable to work with (so long as you say and do what they want), and the light doesn't make me melt.

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