Thanks for the input everyone!
I have continued to roll this around in my mind. I've been trying to picture myself doing the work and how I would do it that would be more "clean" etc. I think I could do it. THEN I've been trying to imagine if I would be the nurse that would make the patient feel comfortable and cared for when they arrive for their procedure, etc. There isn't really time to chit chat and hand hold, so I would need to be getting my work done and putting them at ease all at the same time while I'm sticking them for their IV, etc. I'm not much of a chit chatter anyway, so I'm OK with that part. It's weird - I never really thought about it, but working in the NICU, I could just do my work, do my tasks, and not *have* to make small talk with the patient, so it's not really a skill I ever developed.
I can't imagine pointing out this nurse's lack of hand washing to anyone at this point - I don't even work there yet! lol I have been trying to figure out if there is a non-offensive way to say to the nurse manager, "You know - part of what squicked me out was the lack of handwashing going on." I just can't think of a way to say that and it not be offensive or inappropriate (ie "not my place" to say it...).
It just seemed she was always in such a hurry to get stuff done. Even taking out IV's she'd drip blood on the floors, linen, etc. Twice she got her glove all bloodied up and instead of changing it just wiped it on the pillow. She has been there 10 years, so I don't know if some of it is just her own comfort level with other peoples' germs or what. (she *did* clean up the blood splatters on the floor right away with some wipes they keep in the cabinets) I could never quite figure out what she was in such a hurry about. I kept waiting for it to get busy and she kept telling me how busy we were. ::shrugs:: Of course, I was just observing and not doing, and didn't have someone tagging along behind me while I worked. lol
Here is my PRO and CON list:
PRO: good pay, good location, great hours, 10-14 IVs a day (my favorite skill), well organized, routine work (I like routines!), they are willing to spend as much time orienting me as I need (I have been home with kids for 18 years!! I'm currently working as a substitute school nurse - not a good fit for me but that's a whole other story!!) I could also view this as a stepping stone job that may give me that 1-2 years of "recent nursing experience" that would help me get an even better job - kwim?
CON: general ickiness, questionable infection control practices by other staff (well - I can only speak about this one nurse, really), pulling rectal tubes
( I should just get over it!!)
Her practice sounds abhorrent. I was my hands every time I strip off my gloves, and NEVER touch my face at work. The finger licking? Ew. Just ew.
If the oesophegeal dilation was that distressing, it might be worthh speaking to the anesthesiologist about just what a person may experience/remember. It may help with your feelings of distress.
And every day lends itself to a new kind of squicky, from C-Diff code browns to VAC dressings covering multiple weeping necrotic fistulae. I smile, nod, and swallow hard. And shower before coming home. Where my duty shoes stay on the porch. Outside.
I know he won't remember it. I guess normally the nurse would have given him a bit more sedation/pain meds just before the dilation, but they were having a hard time keeping his O2 sats up so didn't want to give him any more. I think it might be one of those things you get used to when you're around it awhile - it was just not what I was expecting at all. PLUS - my husband just had that procedure last year and it was like - WOW - my poor hubby! And the oral appliance looks creepy. It just does. No way around that. lol
You know, I guess I always assumed people who went into healthcare were special and amazing because they weren't bothered by the gross-out stuff. Now I realize you all get squicky, too, and what makes you special and amazing is that you keep doing it anyway. Thank you!!!
Isn't that a nice thing to say!!
When I was in nursing school I had a patient having a bone marrow biopsy. I was in the room to be his "support person". Bones gross me out. Completely. SO - I was sitting beside his bed, he was on his side facing me, and I had my head down on the edge of the bead, sweating bullets, pale, shaky, holding his hand and patting it saying, "Just relax! It'll be OK!" into the bedsheets. lol I don't know if I was trying to convince him or me!!
So - sorry - I kind of veered off topic. If I could just get my mind wrapped around the "ick factor" and how to manage it for myself, I think this could be a really good job, you know?? I'm glad to know that I'm not an over-hand-washer and that we all agree she wasn't utilizing the best practices!!