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Why do healthcare providers drink?

On Behalf of | Jun 14, 2023 | Medical Malpractice

No one should drink when working, especially when treating people. Healthcare providers are guided by strict ethics, and while many observe them, some don’t. And one of the ways they violate these ethics is by drinking while in the line of duty. But why would someone who understands the sensitivity of their work drink?

Here is why this happens:

Emotional exhaustion

Undeniably, healthcare providers are surrounded by different emotions while working. They see some people happy when a loved one gets better and is discharged, and they see those who are in pain from losing someone. They also get to see patients in physical and emotional pain. These occupational stresses and shifts in emotions can lead to emotional exhaustion. And some can resort to alcohol to relax.

For this reason, hospitals should provide employees with solutions, such as an in-house therapist and adequate breaks. Drinking should not be used to solve emotional exhaustion, as it can lead to costly mistakes.

Can you tell a provider is drunk?

Although some are good at hiding, you can tell when a healthcare provider is drunk. Common signs to look out for are: 

  • Shakiness 
  • Repeating the same information/questions 
  • Unsteady movements 
  • Slurred speech 
  • Irritability

If you notice these and more unusual signs, you should ask to be served by another provider. They may not be happy, as they may not want the hospital to know they are drunk, but you should do so to protect yourself. Unfortunately, in some instances, you may not discover these signs and may end up being injured.

If you are injured by a drunk healthcare worker, be it a nurse, physician, dentist or pharmacist, you should learn more about your case to make the right moves.