If we can't call them nurses what SHOULD we call them? Do we need a better title for front line caregivers in facilities?

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Recently Auntiedodo wrote "Please DONT CALL THEM NURSES, it’s an insult to those of us who actually are."


The women in mom's nursing home are frequently referred to as nurse by the residents, although among the staff they are called "the girls" (as in, "I'll get one of the girls to come and help you"). Uhm, no.


Personally I'm at a loss as to what form of address to use if I can't remember their actual name. For example I see _______ is getting out of her wheelchair and is going to fall, I'm not gonna call for a PSW! Aide! Caregiver! (Girl! lol)


Nurse gets used because it is one syllable and it traditionally described a person who gave care, even though the title Nurse should be reserved for those who have earned it. Any thoughts?

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When I worked in a hospital if someone called for help, we all went forward. We soon sorted out who was needed.
At one time I was a Sterile Services Technician - my kids called me a 'Scrubber' (We dealt with all the instruments from the whole of the hospital - so our knowledge was great BUT we also cleaned them lol Hence the 'Scrubber' title.

Just shout HELP! :)
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Thanks, FF for your explanation about the tags. I never knew that!
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Any nurse who is insulted by what someone else is called needs to take a look at their paycheck. I am a degreed engineer, that too is a term the gets thrown around....so what!
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I have much more respect for nursing staff who are neatly turned out in matching scrubs not something they picked up at a garage sale.
WhereI am currently an inpatient, they all have matching scrubs and the RNs have RN embroidered on their tops. The CNAs aids, patient assistants what ever you want to call them are called techs.
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Couldn't agree more, Shane.

And it is simple. So simple, indeed, that the fact that it's often not done makes me think that either the organisation or the personnel prefer the staff not to be individually identifiable.

What makes me seethe is the way it's dressed up as not wanting to "confuse" people. So you'll get junior doctors taught that patients much prefer first names and don't understand levels of seniority and in the ER you'll hear "😀 hello, I'm Kate, I'm one of the doctors" and we're all supposed to feel right at home and comforted by this.

We are not supposed to narrow our eyes and growl: "name, rank, specialty IF you please - !" before we let them start poking us with sharp objects.
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Name tags. All staff are required to wear them and often do not. This is a pet peeve of mine.
I am a RN. It didn’t bother me while my mom was in a nursing home if someone called a CNA a “nurse”.
What should they be called in an urgent situation? Irrelevant to me in the long run. I knew who the RN’s were.
In a hospital I see that RN nametags have some notation - usually a big “RN” on their name tag. I am all for this.
But in doctor’s offices it is completely different. No one wears name tags so you don’t know who is who.
Simple name tag, Employer. Purchase them for your staff & make sure they wear them.
In nursing homes, doesn’t bother me what they are called as long as they come when summoned.
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I remember "Emergency" and "Dixie" the RN . She sure was one "cool cucumber" and could handle anything--the patients, the doctors, even John Gage, EMT (played by Randolph Mantooth).

Where I grew up each School of Nursing had their own style of nursing cap so you knew which School of Nursing a nurse had graduated from before you even talked to her. (Sorry guys!) A cap that looked like the soufflé med cups = Margaret Mary SofN, an A-frame cap = the University, a wide Blue strip = LPN SofN, a white Powder Puff= St. Luke's SofN, and so on....

At our School of Nursing, the nursing caps were shaped like a box. The "Capping Ceremony" was SO important that families came to it. I still remember receiving my nursing cap. The Two "Striping Ceremonies" were important because it meant that you had "graduated" from one "grade level" to another "grade level". So on Graduation Day, we had TWO Black stripes on our caps.

But in the "REAL" world, caps were a pain and a hassle to wear. Since I worked on an Orthopedic Unit, I kept hanging my cap on the traction ropes. The caps were also a good source of bacteria. A friend of mine did a study for her BSN Senior Project and discovered that the shower room floors were cleaner than the nurses' caps or their stethoscopes. YIKES!?!

Trying to decide what to call the caregiver staff at hospitals and nursing homes will always be an issue. So why not discuss it?
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When it comes to wearing scrubs, I like the idea of differentiating between the different staff members in health care settings, at the nursing home almost everyone is wearing scrubs including aides, RNs and RPNs, NP, housekeeping, dietary and the occasional doctor dropping by. We've even got a few family members who stop in after work wearing scrubs.

Lots of jobs require you to wear a company uniform or at least a company shirt. I was always pleased when the nurses and aides who came to our house wore their uniform shirts, when one nurse showed up looking like a goth teenager I almost didn't let her in!
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HolidayEnd, ah THAT CAP, I am reminded of the nurses cap whenever I watch some of the older TV series, such as "Emergency". I noticed "Dixie" who was the RN had two black stripes on her cap where others had just one, I guess to let the nurses know who was the charge nurse. Sometimes Dixie was wearing high heels. Seriously? High heels??? And sometimes had long fingernails and false eyelashes... oh, dear.
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" I thought this topic was done with but now we are going to dig it up"

I'm not sure what you are saying HolidayEnd or exactly which part of the discussion has you so riled up?
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