Scutwork and cleaning up other people's bodily fluids...

Discussion in 'Clinical Rotations' started by MacGyver, Aug 12, 2002.

  1. MacGyver

    MacGyver Membership Revoked

    Aug 8, 2001
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    I've heard some nasty horror stories that may be untrue regarding how med students/residents and even fully trained doctors are expected to clean up their patients and handle their bodily fluids in non-medical ways.

    For example, are med students/residents told to wash or clean up homeless patients? I thought nurses usually did that stuff. Is that common practice or does it just happen once in a great while if there happens to be no nurses on the floor?
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  2. Firebird

    Firebird 1K Member
    10+ Year Member

    Mar 15, 2001
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    Your signature quote is scary.
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  3. kenfused

    kenfused Senior Member
    Partner Organization 7+ Year Member

    Jun 24, 2002
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    I'm not sure what you mean by handling bodily fluids in "non-medical ways", but that sounds scary to me!

    I'd say cleaning wounds and stuff is ok, but hopefully you won't have to be cleaning other things/ Urine/Stool, is pretty nasty!!
  4. Winged Scapula

    Winged Scapula Cougariffic!
    Staff Member Administrator Physician Faculty Lifetime Donor Verified Expert Verified Account 15+ Year Member

    Apr 9, 2000
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    Attending Physician
    Well if it soothes you any, I have NEVER been asked or told, or even expected to clean up patients/homeless people, etc. Matter of fact, nurses are often suprised when I clean up after myself (for example, when looking at a wound, removing a chest tube, doing a bedside procedure), often attributing it to my femaleness.

    If a patient has a messy BM when I'm in the room, we call the nurse - never once has someone said (at least in our presence) that we should have cleaned them up, or asked a medical student to stay. I HAVE helped clean up a patient vomiting in the Trauma Bay or CT scanner, but to be part of the team, not because I was asked or made to.

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