Nurses are compassionate professionals, bullying ‘unacceptable,’ states ex-PNA-NY president

The author: 30 years a nurse

The author: 30 years a nurse

By Susan Gador

Allow me to share my personal opinion. I am not here to contradict any comments and opinions expressed in The FilAm series “When the bullies are doctors and senior nurses: How FilAm nurses cope (Part 1)” and “Gossip as a form of bullying (Part 2).”

“Bullying, lateral violence, eating the young,” or other similar phrases do exist not just in the nursing profession, but also in other professions, as well as in the non-professional arena (e.g. primary and intermediate schools, etc.). There is enough evidence in the nursing profession how this misbehavior affects the individual being belittled or bullied and likewise becomes a safety concern on patient care.

I want to enlighten, encourage, and educate my fellow nurses that this misbehavior is unacceptable. You need to “stand tall” and “speak up.” Educate yourself regarding your institution’s Code of Conduct on bullying or its parallel meaning. Be informed about your local State Professional Regulation and or Nursing Specialty Professional Organization for position statements on bullying, and keep updated on State or Senate legislation regarding the issue.

Nurses are compassionate, caring and dignified professionals. They are with patients 24 hours, seven days a week, 365 days in a year.

I have been a nurse for 30 years now and very proud of my many years of dedicated nursing experience. As a nurse, I have worked in many capacities: as staff nurse, charge nurse, preceptor, educator, mentor, clinical liaison administrative nurse, nurse practitioner and volunteer. As a preceptor and mentor, I can say that I can be stringent because my main goal is always patient safety. I remind my preceptee that the patient is a human being, not an object, and therefore needs that true, tender, loving, and safe care. I remind them to place themselves or family member in the patient’s role and think appropriately how they will feel if care is jeopardized.

I disregard and disrespect colleagues who consider themselves to be bullies. I truly embrace and respect colleagues who wholeheartedly share, acknowledge, teach, empower and accept their faults.

I am always grateful to my many mentors; nurses, physicians, family members, loved ones, acquaintances, colleagues in the community and my professional organizations and many others for your great patience, guidance, mentorship and respect in leading me to where I am now. There are too many to mention, but I’m sure they know who they are.

For those that I mentored and precepted, I am not perfect, but I hope I have made an impact on your career, your professional growth, and your life. My humble and sensitive apology if I made your rotation with me a little tough. All the best and kudos to all my nurse colleagues!

Susan Gador was president of the Philippine Nurses Association of New York from 2010 to 2012.

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