AUGUSTA, GA – Saying they are “sick and tired” of waiting on surgeons hand and foot (mostly hands), operating room nurses at nearby Mercy hospital are threatening to leave if changes aren’t made. “This has gone on long enough,” reported scrub nurse Barbara Buckley. “Every day I dress these surgeons like I’m their mama. Putting on their gowns. Putting on their gloves. They are big boys and girls. They need to take care of themselves.”
Throughout modern medicine, surgeons have been relying on others to help them get dressed, often going their entire careers without learning how to put on a gown or pair of gloves, tasks commonly taught to school age children. A recent study found that surgeons are willing to wait hours for a nurse, scrub tech, med student, or da Vinci robot to help them get dressed. When asked about the methods used to arrive at this conclusion, the authors responded, “Don’t worry about it.”
Accounts from local nurses, contend that surgeons have become more dependent in recent years. Some surgeons now rely on OR staff to scratch itches, wipe brow sweat, and fan them when they get too hot. One nurse in Atlanta reported being forced to return a page for the surgeon and even had to hold the phone up to the surgeons ear as if he didn’t have his own hands.
According to Nurse Barb, “Surgeons these days won’t get anything for themselves, ordering nurses around like they own the place.”