Ok, I’ve thought this over and here’s my two cents worth – I have heard patients refer to family members (or caregivers) as “my nurse” and I’ve heard employees (whose credentials I knew) refer to themselves falsely as a “Nurse” in the patients presence. I, too, have questioned these folks at to where they received their credentials as in “Where did you go to nursing school’ ? which usually causes them to leave the room without answering – If you’re going to choose to be part of a profession where there are multiple credentials present than you should represent for your “section” of professionals well – I believe that can be best defined as follows:
1) wearing appropriate uniforms
2) name badges
3) stating your title for the patient because the patient is entitled to know truthfully who is caring for them
4) practicing your skillset by providing the patient care as you have been educated to do
IF you want to be a higher-credentialed professional, go back to school and acquire the education needed to do so – then, and ONLY then – should you represent yourself as a higher-credentialed professional – doing otherwise is FRAUD and NOT appropriate in any environment where a patient depends on you – and no, it is NOT excusable for anyone under ANY circumstances to falsely represent themselves.
Patients depend on us, as medical professionals, to maintain a high standard of honesty, integrity and moral aptitude, that’s what I would want for my family and myself, I’m sure that is what any of us would want ! Anyone who works so hard to be identified as part of a medical team should be proud to name themselves by their credentials – I am an LPN of 20 years currently studying for my RN – but make no mistake about it, I know I am STILL an LPN and I am proud of it ! CNAs/CMAs are part of a TEAM providing care for patients, just as RNs/LPNs are part of the TEAM providing care, just as NPs/PAs are part of the TEAM – we all have an important role in the lives of our patient, so REPRESENT yourself correctly !