Former comedian Rodney Dangerfield’s most famous line was “I don’t get no respect.” This seems to be a constant complaint that I hear from many BMETS and engineers. The thing about respect is that no one can give it to you. It doesn’t happen overnight. You have to earn it and you have to re-earn it everyday and you earn it by the way you act.
There are many people who write about how to gain respect. Invariably, they all suggest that the most important first step is to show respect for others. Basically, this is a re-statement of the Golden Rule to do unto others as you would have them do unto you. It’s simple; if you respect others, they, in turn, will respect you. Although this is a very simple rule, it seems to be forgotten by many in our profession. Too many members seem to take pleasure in bashing nurses or making crude jokes about their lack of technical skills. We should not tolerate engineers and BMETS who engage in this activity. It is time to stop this practice. Those who bash nurses are an embarrassment to the rest of the profession. They are an embarrassment to those who work every day to build bridges between nursing and biomedical engineering.
When you bash nurses, you show disrespect for them. It is true that they do not have our technical skills, but they have many skills that we don’t have. Just like sports teams, hospitals are comprised of players with specialized skills with each working harmoniously to achieve success. In baseball, there are pitchers, catchers, infielders, and outfielders. While some players may seem to be more important than others, each plays an important role that makes the team effective. Hospitals are no different. Just as each skill is important to the to a baseball team’s integrity and success, a variety of specialties are required to achieve successful outcomes in patient care. Nurses have an important role to play, surgeons have an important role to play and you have an important role to play. I do not understand why anyone would work in this field when they do not respect their fellow team members. Those of you who persist in bashing nurses should probably consider seeking other employment and leave the profession to those who work diligently to build strong bonds between BMETS, engineers and nurses.
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