Sunday, October 17, 2010

What? Just 'Cause I Don't Drink the Koolaid?

A couple of weeks ago I was looking at the schedule and noticed that I had not received any charge pay for the entire month of Sept, and was apparently not in line for any in October. We are such a small shop that it is just "gimme" cash and is usually distributed equally among us. It is not a ton of money, but since they pay us through a peashooter anyway, an extra $20 or $30 a week at least pays for coffee or a manicure. Whatever.

I also noticed that SIC had received wayyyyyyyyyyy more of it than anyone.

It was a moment of WTF-ery that I felt deserved investigation. Since it was on a weekend and my boss wasn't around, I left a note.

The next day I got a call from Mikki. Apparently, at the last staff meeting my boss announced that charge pay would be withheld for anyone not up to date with competencies, a fact that was not shared with about half of our small staff. SIC sure got the memo, I observed; how convenient.

Our competencies are fairly useless, consisting of a monthly rhythm trip, like so:

So the idea is to identify the rhythm, count out the distance between each of the little teeny squares to determine the intervals and a whole bunch of other useless shit, then declare if/how it should be treated. Waste of time.

I hadn't done a single competency for the whole year; or the year before that. I think because I was in school, my boss sort of gave me a bye because I always do my certifications like BLS, ACLS, PALS, and TNCC. Now she was changing the rules of the game and drawing a line in the sand: if you want money, cough up the competencies.

Mikki knew I was a little pissed about this, not so much as holding charge pay hostage but how it was a big secret that seemed to benefit one or two people; she was practically hysterical. "Don't quit!", she begged, "you can copy mine, I just gave then to Sherry 'cause she hasn't done them either. Really, I mean it!".

As if I would quit over this. Or copy. I just didn't do 'em because I thought they were stupid. Sue me.

My contention is that surely, other knowledge might be more useful, such as inservices or competencies for stuff that we hardly ever see BUT MIGHT ACTUALLY NEED. Like what's in the delivery kit, how to prime the fluid warmer, or how to set up and maintain the IO (intraosseous) equipment (you really don't want to know what that is if you aren't medical, trust me). Other knowledge it might be good to know is specific to our unique facility such as a review of what to do with a deceased person after hours, or should we share our supply of lactated ringers with a local vet for use on a horse. Yes, we actually had a request for a case of IV fluid, unfortunately we only stock about 4 of that kind.

Did I break down and do competencies? Yep. We had 3 (THREE!) patients last Saturday night and I did every one of them, then stuffed them in the the boss's inbox which effectively pre-empted my written rant. Money talks and bullshit walks; OK, so I drank the Koolaid. If for no other reason than to prevent SIC from getting more $$ out of it.