I found myself in hot water the other day because of the call bell. One of my peers received two ambulance patients at the same time, and since I wasn't too busy, I figured I'd run in and give a hand. I got the patient settled in, did my assessment, inserted a luer and drew some blood, did an ECG... all the usual. Then as is my usual practice, I explained what the process would be and that there might be a wait. I then grabbed the call bell and let her know to press the bell if she needed anything.
After a while, the patient pressed the call bell to ask for something or other. Immediately my colleague asked "who the heck gave her the bell?" I of course said I had, and she immediately launched into a long discourse on why she never ever gives the patient the bell and why it's a bad bad idea, and how she would not be able to get any work done with the bell going.
So I have my own thoughts on this, and I will share them in due course, but I want to get your thoughts - nurses and clients alike, and anyone else... what are your thoughts on the call bell? For nurses specifically, do you give your patients the bell? Do you encourage them to use it? Do you make responding to call bells a priority?
Eagerly looking forward to your responses :)