What perception would you have of a nurse who's late, distracted, texting friends and has a wrinkled uniform,while you were interacting with her?

Expert Answers
pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In the situation that you describe, my perception would of course be very negative.  I would not feel that this particular nurse was very professional and I would not feel that she had my best interests in mind.  Because of that, I would feel much less happy with the quality of care that I received at that particular office and I would be less likely to return.

Nurses are typically the people who have the most impact on a patient’s perception of a particular medical facility.  Nurses are the first medical personnel with whom the patient interacts.  The patient will therefore form their first impression of the practice as a whole largely by watching the nurse.

In the situation that you describe, my observation of the nurse would lead me to have a very negative perception of her and of her office.  The wrinkled uniform would not be a huge problem for me, particularly if it were later in the day.  I understand that work inevitably leads clothes to look less tidy than they were at the beginning of the day.  Lateness is somewhat more annoying, though patients have to expect some degree of lateness simply because it is difficult for doctors and nurses to maintain precise schedules. 

What really matters is the degree to which the nurse appears to care about the patient.  In this case, I would feel that the nurse did not care about me.  When I need medical care, I want the providers to act as if I am the most important thing on their minds when they are in the room with me.  I want to feel that they care about my health and my well-being.  If a nurse seems distracted, I will feel that she does not care about me to any great extent.  If she is texting instead of paying attention to me, it will be completely clear to me that I am not her first priority.  I will also not think that she is very professional at all.  I will form a very negative perception of her and the office in which she works.

Nurses are professionals whose business is to provide care for people who need it.  They should always present themselves in a way that indicates that they care about their patients.  The nurse you describe is not doing this and therefore I would perceive her in a very negative way.

susieshy eNotes educator| Certified Educator

 Nursing is a profession that requires a lot of humility and humanity. A correct mixture of these two traits would produce a professional nurse. 

Patients' depend on the nurses' quick response to their needs. Tardiness in the conduct of their duty would create a burden on another person, either the patient or a co- worker. As a patient, I would be adversely affected by a late-coming nurse and as a co- worker, I might have to work more to cover up the duties of my late colleague. 

 Attentiveness is another trait characteristic of any health care worker, particularly with nurses and physicians. A nurse who is distracted with personal problems or other issues, would be unable to concentrate on the task at hand. As a patient, I would soon discover if my nurse is distracted and would be saddened by the thought that my health care provider is not interested in me. That would be the only way a patient would interpret a nurse's distraction at work. They would take it personally, that the nurse is not interested in caring for them.

Texting at work, in front of patients or colleagues might elicit different reactions from them. As a patient, I would again that the nurse is not interested in my problems but wants to be involved elsewhere. Texting during caring for me would make me distracted too and would affect the degree of care the nurse provides me. If i were a colleague, I might be tempted to do the same myself, leading to indiscipline. 

Dress, grooming and personal cleanliness go hand in hand with any profession that requires direct person to person contact. This affects the morale of the profession and also the customers of the profession, in this case the patients. The professional image of a nurse would be tarnished if a nurse came to be with an unkempt look. 

Nurses like people in any profession are well aware of the perceptions society has of them and to keep up with the dignity of the profession, they need to conform to the benchmarks of their profession.

glendamaem | Student

My perception is that she is not committed to her job and she is only doing it for the sake of earning money which is ironic because it is the responsibility of every health worker to attend to their patients whole-heartedly as their health or much worse the patient's life is at risk if their needs are neglected.

devinsmith | Student

My perception would be that she was very unprofessional. Being a nurse is a lot to handle, because you're the main person interacting with the patient. You take care of their initial needs and care for them as they go through the healing process. Being late and having a wrinkled uniform are excusable because sometimes things just happen. However, texting a friend while you're supposed to be caring for another persons health is grounds for termination in my opinion. At that point you have no respect for your job at all.