Those who are supposed to care

Sometimes we as health care practitioners (HCPs)are the ones who are ill or injured.  When that occurs, we generally believe the other HCPs around us, and particularly, those whom we work so hard for, will treat us with caring respect. For some HCPs, especially some employers, that is simply not going to happen regardless of the nature of the injury.  Large facility employers have adequate policies in force to protect both the employer from lollygaggers and the employee from heartless owners who purposefully disregard obvious painful, debilitating injuries.  Smaller places of practical care often  have policies which evolve spontaneously, usually to the benefit of the employer.  It is not until times of such disability that employers reveal what type of wizard is truly behind the curtain.

In the course of our employed lives, which accounts for roughly 70% of our time on this earth, realizing that our employer is not the wonderful, caring being we had believed them to be.  The slow realization that the previously beloved employer is focused only on money production can be agonizing.

After much thought, two end products should result when the employees care more about each other than the employer could ever claim in front of the Almighty.  First, the injured practitioner should give swift, adequate, professional notice.  Save yourself.  In order to be the best NP one can be, it is an absolute necessity to care for oneself and about oneself.  Working for any practice that only treats employees well when those employees are, um, well, is like continuing to date someone after they have shown themselves to be untrustworthy.  Save yourself.

The second end result should be to evaluate future employers more carefully.  Weigh smaller versus larger practices.  Ask about written policy handbooks.  And what to expect if policies are overhauled.  Are employees grandfathered?  It is important to know.  Save yourself from jumping too fast. 70% can be a long, long time.

Sadly, finding out how an employer treats injured employees is often something we understand after the process has started.  Worse is that this has to be written about at all.  Our society has become so completely romanticized with the PC of everything that it is difficult to understand how any employer can be so callous as to watch an employee physically suffer day after day and then verbally and policy-driven attack them.

However, if you are genuinely kind, truly and authentically kind to co-workers and patients, rest assured those fine people will be tremendously supportive right through to the last-minute of the last day.  And that, my friends, is why being honest and kind triumphs over hardened money-driven hearts every single time.

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