ADVICE, P.R.N.: Confronting borderline abuse

July 2004 
Volume 34  Number 7
Pages 15 - 15
  PDF Version Available!

© 2004 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc. Volume 34(7)             July 2004             p 15 Confronting borderline abuse [ADVICE, P.R.N.: BURNOUT]

One of my co-workers is a highly competent nurse with a lot of experience in the unit. In the past few months, she's been showing signs of burnout, snapping at colleagues and acting “down” in general. Usually I just steer clear when she's in one of these moods. But several times lately, I've witnessed behavior toward patients that seems almost abusive. For instance, she lost patience with a man who was obviously confused and spoke very sharply to him while grasping his wrist .

Although we often work together, I don't know this nurse well enough to call her a friend. Should I confront her about her behavior, or would that be out of line? —D.R., CALIF.

Our consultant doesn't recommend confronting her directly ...

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