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Q&A Friday – Sleeping On The Job

Dave Soltau - January 29, 2021 - 0 comments

Hey, how’s it going? It’s DaveTheNurse with the Health & Wealth Academy in Scottsdale, AZ. Here’s another great question sent via email for our Friday Q&A.

“Dave, what are your thoughts on caregivers sleeping at night? I’m currently managing a patient 12 hours 8pm-8am and they go to bed at midnight. All tasks are complete, so the caregiver is sitting up with nothing to do. Help!”

Here’s the deal when it comes to sleeping: Two things you have to take into consideration when you’re taking care of a client. No. 1, what is the opinion of the family? Remember, this family has hired you to manage their loved one. And No. 2, what is your personal policy and procedure as a company on sleeping?

On a rare occasion, you will manage a patient that expects you to stay in the room, and close your eyes, and be in the room when they’re sleeping. The likelihood of you staying awake is a big zero.

Do you fall asleep? Of course! It’s very important that number one, you understand what the expectation of the patient is, number two, the expectation of the family, and number 3, what is your policy as a company.

We are not fans of having our employees sleep on the night shift. Why? Because without fail, when they close their eyes, that patient will get out of bed and may fall and break a hip. If you work for us, you will stay awake.

In certain situations, we’ve talked to the family, and said: “I understand that you want our team to stay in the dark room next to your father, but if that’s the case, there’s a strong probability that our employee will close their eyes and fall asleep.” That’s a reality.

What I’d rather you do is move around the house, keep the lights on, and be available for that patient as a safety person only, which means you are aware, you are awake, and you’re getting paid to be available.

So when it comes to sleeping, am I a fan? No, I am not. Does the family have a right to say, “yes, they can sleep in the room, or no, I’d rather they be awake.”? Absolutely, let the family make the decision, but accept the reality that it’s going to be based on your policies and procedures, as well as the desires of the one paying the bill.

I hope that answers your question. Thanks for asking!


If you have a question you’d like me to try to answer, send an email to me at and I’ll do my best to answer your question.

Get to know more about me on my website and learn more about my Nurse Entrepreneur courses on the Health and Wealth Academy website.

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