Unsuccessful bypass


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Abstract

I'm a nurse-manager working the night shift at a community hospital. Recently, the nursing staff budget for weekends was decreased. I felt the cutback would lead to significant understaffing, so I wrote a memo detailing my concerns to my immediate supervisor and the newly hired vice-president (VP) of nursing. They responded, in effect, that there was nothing they could do.Last Friday night, a physician who also happens to be a member of the hospital's board of trustees was in my unit. I've known him for years and we have a solid professional relationship. So I asked him if, as a board member, he could have the staffing budget reviewed again.Well, it seems he contacted the president of the medical board, who then called the nursing VP at home. The fallout? I received a written warning from the VP citing me for “gross insubordination.”I felt that my conversation with this physician was strictly informal. Maybe I shouldn't have brought up his position as a trustee. Even so, I think the disciplinary action was harsh. What do you think?—L.G., CONN.

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