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Confidentiality 

A Facebook vent

 

Sarah’s day on the residential care unit had been long and tough. She felt stretched by a client's family, who had asked her the same questions multiple times and had later called the unit to complain that she had been “busy” and “unhelpful.”

After her shift, she logs into Facebook, and updates her status to read, "so much for being patient and listening—some people apparently just don't want to hear—maybe dementia is hereditary?"

Ask yourself

What do you think about Sarah's post? Is it ever okay to post work-related comments on social media sites?

Does it make a difference if names of people and places are not included?

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Frequently Asked Question

Professional practice issues

Question

I’m expected to work in an unfamiliar practice area. Can I refuse?

Answer

Your employer has a right to reassign you to another area. You were likely hired by an agency or health authority and cannot refuse to be reassigned.

Consider what care you can safely provide, while practicing within your level of competence. Clearly communicate this to the most appropriate person such as your immediate supervisor and discuss any concerns about your reassignment.  Refusing a reassignment is generally justified only when the risk of harm to clients is greater if you accept than if you refuse. If you don’t have the competence to work in the assigned area, collaborate with others to determine the best option and follow up in writing.

Working in an unfamiliar practice area can be challenging and anxiety provoking. Using these strategies may help:

  • Ask for an orientation to the clients, environment and resources.
  • Review your assignment with the charge nurse and discuss the care requirements for your assigned clients.
  • Outline your competencies as they relate to the client care required, indicating what care you can safely provide and what you cannot.
  • Communicate regularly with the charge nurse/team leader about changes to your clients and their plan of care.
  •  Ask for nurse to be assigned as your resource person.

You’ll find more information and guidance in the resource Working with limited resources.

For further assistance contact practice@crnbc.ca.

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