iv pump alarm

Local RN Reprograms IV Pump Alarm to Play Michael Bolton; Patients No Longer Report Difficulty Keeping Arm Straight

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BUFFALO, NY – When one hears the epithet “problem solver,” one recalls the inventors of Duct Tape, Ativan, Propofol, and Discharged AMA.  Today, at Niagara Area Hospital (NAH),  it is reserved for an RN on the medical/surgical unit.

iv pump alarm
I don’t know if it gets any better than when he sings, “When a man loves a woman”

Local male nurse, Thomas Ruvio, is being hailed by patients as the savior of silence, as one of his patients praised, “He finally shut up that damned beeping so I can get some sleep in this rotten hell hole.”

This present day Y-chromosome Florence Nightingale has thus been inundated with calls and emails from hospitals all over the world requesting information and insight after being the first documented person to explore the backside of a hospital-grade IV pump.  In our interview with Tom, he was humble about his heroics.

“I had never dared to venture from the front screen with the buttons.  Usually I just show up cursing under my breath, push the SILENCE button, shake the patient, and tell him to stop bending his arm.  You know how it usually goes.  It’s bothering everyone else, especially his roommate, and besides his line is going to clot off and then I’ll have to summon the energy to place another IV.  But this time was different, there my patient was, snoring away, ‘PATIENT SIDE OCCLUDED’ blinking away on the pump screen, the usual shrill banshee beep of the alarm.  His sleep-deprived roommate throwing balled up slipper socks in an attempt to sink one into the snorer’s open mouth, and as I picked his roommate’s sockballs off the floor, I looked at the pump’s back, and there it was!”

There it was indeed as Tom stumbled upon an unused mint condition 30-pin iPhone dock on the backside of the pump.  “I can’t believe we never looked back there.”

“What music would no one be able to sleep through?  And just like any red-blooded American would think of, I put on my Michael Bolton’s Greatest Hits playlist, which I swear is my wife’s playlist, not mine.”

Now Tom’s patients and their lines are safe.  Many find themselves unable to make it through more than 30 seconds of “How Can We Be Lovers” without deliriously screaming themselves awake and straightening their arms.

Several patients were surveyed about the change, and a majority described a physical or psychological inability to bend their arms while hooked up to the IV pump.  One patient elaborated, “It’s like my brain knows better, a Pavlovian response or something.”

Despite the apparent use of soul music mind control, the recent patient satisfaction surveys are positive and many of Tom’s patients at discharge ask, “How am I supposed to live without you?”  Preliminary NAH administrators estimate Tom’s discovery will save the hospital millions in energy costs simply by the decreasing the alarm beeps.  Administrators are excited now because nurses can attend more to note writing instead of being summoned to straighten out patient’s arms.

When we asked Tom what it was going to take to get all hospitals to implement such an effective tool for treatment plan compliance, Tom said “That’s easy: Time, Love, and Tenderness.”

“I promise it’s my wife’s playlist!”

  • Show Comments

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    Sarah Bledig Portugal


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    Robin Fahringer Mitchell Machajewski

    “It’s my wife’s playlist!” Heehee!

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    Becki Mather-Smith

    Gomerblog – I can’t believe it took me til reading your article about ICU nurses being excited for their OR pt to arrive so they could detangle lines to know you existed. Didn’t know it was satire til I saw my friend, Rahul Chawla (Intensivist) had posted it. It all made sense at that point! Keep ’em coming!! Love you guys!!
    And you should work with HiHof; you have no idea what you’re missing!!! ;)

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    Marsha Parker

    Just reading the headline made me laugh out loud. I used to tell co-workers if I ever get admitted in a coma just play rap or country music and I will wake up just to punch them in the face.

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    Genius idea!

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    Becki Mather-Smith

    Whatever. It was your idea!

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    Ed Smith

    Something my Son would do :)

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    Jessica Halley Rae

    Martha Bowers

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    Melissa Fish


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    Joseph Geffen

    Funny. My dilaumed pump plays Rick Astley “never gonna give you up”!!!

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    HiHof Mangan

    Thanks Becki! It was a team effort with Gomerblog

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    Lori Madsen Sayles

    Ann Stoysich Adler- need this for our alarm committee

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    Lisa Szymczak

    Too funny!

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    Melanie Larsen

    That’s funny!

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    Alison Gagliardo

    Not bad Rob. Of course, Lionel would be better.

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    Rissa Stackhouse

    Wouldn’t that be great???

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    Veronica Nicole Fries


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    Jen Mehrstedt


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    Jozette Dunlap

    As much as I like this, I may suffer a nervous breakdown listening to Michael Bolton all night!

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    Becki Mather-Smith

    My coworker, HiHof Mangan, helped write this article! ;)

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    Tracipatti McMather

    Omg too funny, where do you find this stuff? But how do I live without you?!

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    Pam Black

    I’m going to look for that port next shift I work!

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    Andre Sookdar

    Oh God this is effin hilarious.

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    Robert Reynolds

    My favorite

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    Helen Aanstoos

    Another good one

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    Kathleen Lyons O’Bryan


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    Becki Mather-Smith

    HiHof Mangan!

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    Aereal Runyans

    Adam Brakefield

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    Lacy Foster

    Leticia Barraza

  • Avatar
    Kim Eichhorn

    Barb Gehringer Buccigrossi

  • Avatar
    Rob Cameron

    Dan Hornsby Alison Gagliardo

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