A vampire walks into an ER ...

Jackie Vance
Jackie Vance

Since Halloween is just around the corner, I thought this story is apropos. Especially since most nurses don't question the situations that walk into our workspace. At all.

Let me make illustrate this point: Not long ago, I was giving a day of lectures and told a joke as an icebreaker before each session. The first group was nurses; the second group was composed of administrators and rehab folks.

Here's how the icebreaker went: “Forgive me if I'm a bit grumpy today. I accidentally swallowed some scrabble tiles and I'm afraid my poop may spell disaster.” The nurses just chuckled while with the other group I got not laughs but, “Why would you swallow scrabble tiles?”

Again, I guess as nurses, we've kind of seen everything so almost nothing surprises us.  

So last week I was reading a blog by an emergency room physician about an “interesting encounter.” A woman walked into the ER quite sick and while being examined, claimed she was a vampire who drank human blood. Being an ER doc, neither he nor his nurses rushed to call psych. They still needed to figure out what the medical issues were.

Sure enough, the woman had some long pointed incisors, which she said were not caps but purposefully filed that way. Throughout the day, she was very informative about a world most of us do not typically know exists. There is a large underworld of human “vampires” and volunteer donors. They truly believe that they need to drink human blood to exist and find donors through social media who are into that codependent thing, I guess. One problem (I know, just one?) is that drinking human blood leads to all kind of wonderful health issues. 

The thing is, I've been in healthcare for 30-plus years already, so I won't be practicing when these “vampires” start walking into your neighborhood nursing home. But 30-plus years from now, you can count on them being around.

And I bet that nurses won't question it when it happens! They'll just deal compassionately with their new resident, without any sign of fear.

The only thing that will make them shake in their boots is the citation they'll be afraid they'll receive about not meeting the resident's dietary requests!

Just keeping it real (creepy)!

Nurse Jackie

The Real Nurse Jackie is written by Jacqueline Vance, RNC, CDONA/LTC, a 2012 APEX Award of Excellence winner for Blog Writing. Vance is a real life long-term care nurse. A nationally respected nurse educator and past national LTC Nurse Administrator of the Year, she also is an accomplished stand-up comedienne. She has not starred in her own national television series — yet. The opinions supplied here are her own and do not necessarily reflect those of her employer or her professional affiliates.

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The Real Nurse Jackie

The Real Nurse Jackie is written by Jacqueline Vance, RNC, CDONA/LTC, a 2012 APEX Award of Excellence winner for Blog Writing. Vance is a real life long-term care nurse. A nationally respected nurse educator and past national LTC Nurse Administrator of the Year, she also is an accomplished stand-up comedienne. The opinions supplied here are her own and do not necessarily reflect those of her employer or her professional affiliates.

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