Pros: earned valuable experience working with psychiatric patients.
Cons: frustration over chaotic and dangerous work environment
I was very excited to be part of starting up a new unit. My enthusiasm gradually turned to disappointment as each new acting manager came and went. The unit was under-supplied including work stations on wheels, medical supplies, paper and toner, There was a disregard by management, for staff safety, as no safe zone was established. Nurses and ancillary staff were being assaulted and injured by patients. Confusion over rapid response and code procedures with regard to gero-psych was ongoing as was confusion with transfer procedures to medical floors due to illness and/or infection. Inadequate staffing necessitated my increasing assignment as relief charge, despite vehement objections to Clinical Supervisor and each acting manager, resulting in high stress levels because of inadequate patient care and improper staff behaviors. The hardest part of the job was seeing patient ill-treated and getting no response up the chain of command. Most enjoyable part of the job was interaction with patients during group activities including karaoke and reminiscing therapy.