When should I speak up?

I work at an aged care home as a personal assistant. I like it as I find I learn something new every day and caring for these residents I find rewarding. Some days are hard, some days are good.

I have found that the place I work at there is a lot of bitching/gossiping, call me naive but I thought this would be a place where bitching/gossiping would be a bare minimum, its team work based. Well that’s what I thought until today when firstly I got told one of the rooms I looked after a bed wasn’t made by 9am. The reason the bed wasn’t made was because I had another resident in my group who was really ill and I forgot. Now this might seem small and a silly reason to get written up by, but if I saw someone whose bed wasn’t made and it wasn’t my groups and I wasn’t doing anything I’d go make it or if someones socks weren’t on I’d go put there socks on because I am part of a team  I wouldn’t go bitch to the other co-workers that blah blah didn’t do this, I’d help out. Anyway that was the start of my good day but it gets better.

We have a resident who is on their end of life plan and they were clearly in an uncomfortable position, having buzzed saying that they were in pain, I attempted to reposition him myself. Seeming that working by myself wasn’t working, I called upon one of the more ‘experienced’ ladies who also is quite scary. She quite willingly assisted but made it clear things had to be done her way. Firstly the way she used the slide sheet was wrong and we were hurting our backs, because we ended up lifting him up the bed, secondly I got told that I was not strong enough to lift this resident. Thirdly the poor resident was in a worse of position than he was before. I was not content and went to find someone else, I did and in the end we got this resident comfortable and did it in the correct manner, telling the lady that helped me what had happened her response to me was “She’s just more experienced and there’s nothing you can do.”

It’s my fault stewing on this now really, I should have gone up to the head nurse and told her what had happened, and how she pretty much man handled the resident. Things have to change, I should’ve spoken it was wrong to handle a situation like that and I definitely know in nursing school that we are taught the right way to position ourselves and the residents to make them more comfortable, in a manner that will protect us and the resident. I should learn to be stronger and voice what is wrong. I am the new generation in this field, things need to change, we should all be a team and help each other out.



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