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mary ann ferrannini
How can I protect what I write
I have an annoying problem. I have been involved for 20 years in writing policies and procedures, chart forms and all kinds of forms to make our jobs easier. I revised a daily worksheet and a system to keep track of all the PICC dressing due each day. I love doing this and really do not care if I get any credit or not for worksheets and tools ..it is for me and my co-workers. I do care about the policies and procedures though!!! The problem is that recently when I write a policy or a section of the policy the CNS signs her name to it. I am finding this very offensive and believe she is stealing my work...and of course she wants to steal it b/c it is good work with a lot of evidenced based practice policy and procedures and a lot of effort put into it.  Is this unintentional or does she know what she is doing...she does not even put me down as a reference. On my new PICC procedure i wrote my name in large print on a special cover page with author written next to it and said something like I am the sole author of this nursing document. HELP what else can I do... I get physically ill when I see her name next to my hard work.
lynncrni
At first I thought you were

At first I thought you were asking a question about copyright issues, but that is not the case if you are an employee of the hospital. As an employee, what you write is done on paid work time, so it is the property of the hospital, not you. The hospital policy would then dictate whose name goes on it. If you are writing anything on your own time such as a presentation, etc, you own the copyright just because your name is own it. The key is proving it was yours if someone used it inappropriately. That is the reason for copyright registration, however this is not required for ownership. When writing for publication, you must sign a form agreeing to grant copyright ownership to the publisher.  

Lynn Hadaway, M.Ed., RN, BC, CRNI

www.hadawayassociates.com

Lynn Hadaway, M.Ed., NPD-BC, CRNI

Lynn Hadaway Associates, Inc.

PO Box 10

Milner, GA 30257

Website http://www.hadawayassociates.com

Office Phone 770-358-7861

Wendy Erickson RN
I am the coordinator of the

I am the coordinator of the PICC Service but also chair the Nursing Policy and Procedure Committee.  At the end of each P&P it lists the author of the policy, references, and then is signed by the P&P Chair and the Chief Nursing Officer.  So for the PICC policy, I am listed as the author.  When I assign committee members to review policies (the every-three-year review), they are listed as the author/reviewer.

Check your organization's policy on how P&Ps are approved, who signs them, etc. With our method, no one else would have the opportunity to "take credit" for a policy unless they actually wrote it.  Hope this helps.

Wendy Erickson RN
Eau Claire WI

mary ann ferrannini
This is what happens...I am
This is what happens...I am asked to write the policy and procedure and I usually do this on my own time at home. I turn the policy in and then the CNS puts her name on it. I noticed on a few occasions she has changed a word such as cleanse the cap to say scrub the cap. I understand when I write these I give them to the hospital and I accept it, but I do not believe that is the way a professional should conduct themselves.(the taking credit for something she did not write) I would not even mind if she put her name as well just as long as they use mine. I know this nurse knows that IV therapy is not her speciality as she is the Oncology CNS b/c recently she was asked to correct a previous blunder on the CVC protocol. I politely wrote the section step by step on how to d/c a CVC and also added how to perform a tip culture. So even though the hospital will own what I write how can I deal with this and still be the team player I want to be.
Marilyn Hanchett
As someone who has had work

As someone who has had work ripped off more times than I care to remember, I have a very real sense of your frustration. Here are some tips that may be useful.

1. Avoid the "sole author" trap. A good P&P should be the product of all stakeholders, not just the author of the document. Use your expereince to facilitate participation and collaboration. Focus on "owning" - if you must - the process, rather than the product, and you find that you are far less concerned whose names, if any, are listed on it.

2.  Avoid doing this type of writing at home, on your own time. Yes, I KNOW this can be difficult but is is also VERY important. Reserve YOUR time for those documents for which you can rightfully claim authorship and ownership. As you do this, you will notice that you will not care so much about who "claims" what at work.

3. In addition to #2, nurse authors - of all types and interests - are always needed. Consider applying your experience in a new area: develop a publishable CE program, write for a journal, try your hand at an editorial. I have written not only P&Ps, but entire manuals and have found that the satisfaction from that type of work disappears over time. It is necessary, of course, and therefore important. But satisfying? I think you are more than ready to seek  fulfillment in your writing via another, newer and more challenging route.

 4. Last, accept the fact that there will always be someone ready to take credit for your work - or even steal it. A copyright designation may or may be a deterrent and is meaningful only to the extent that you are willing to pursue it legally - a costly business at best.

Consider instead (or in addition to copyright): You are not responsible for the bad behavior of others and their actions, in the end, do not diminish your talent or your contributions. The dilemma of those who attempt to leverage the contributions of others to advance themselves and their caeers is as old as time; you and I cannot solve it. Be aware, be careful but most of all - be creative.

Marilyn Hanchett RN

mary ann ferrannini
PS. How do you copyright
PS. How do you copyright something? I appreciate all the comments and I love this forum!!!
lynncrni
Simply attach the following

Simply attach the following to anything you write

© Your name, year, All rights reserved

That is it. You can also register your copyright for a fee at  www.copyright.gov/register but this is not required to own the copyright. 

 

Lynn Hadaway, M.Ed., RN, BC, CRNI

www.hadawayassociates.com

Lynn Hadaway, M.Ed., NPD-BC, CRNI

Lynn Hadaway Associates, Inc.

PO Box 10

Milner, GA 30257

Website http://www.hadawayassociates.com

Office Phone 770-358-7861

Wendy Erickson RN
Have you talked to this CNS
Have you talked to this CNS and told her how you feel?  I would think that would be the next step. 

Wendy Erickson RN
Eau Claire WI

mary ann ferrannini
Thank You, Thank You I am
Thank You, Thank You I am going to do that from now on and go from there.
fentanylius
Go to www.legalzoom.com you

Go to

www.legalzoom.com

you can copyright everything for very cheap!

Andre

mary ann ferrannini
Marilyn H, Thank you so much
Marilyn H, Thank you so much for your kind and lovely suggestions. I certainly will take them to heart and print the page so I will remember. I honestly do the work b/c it is in the best interest of patient and our team. Thank you again for your wisdom!!! Mary  
Leigh Ann Bowegeddes
I think it is time to ask

I think it is time to ask this CNS to take responsibility for some specific policies that need to be written. Call her on her habit of taking credit, and give her some to do herself, so that she can experience the joy of the entire process.

 

Leigh Ann

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