How to Deal with Angry Doctors: 8 Practical Strategies for Nurses

how to nurses can deal with angry and difficult doctors

Nurses deal with a lot of people every day. Sometimes, you will need to deal with angry people who, in most cases, are doctors.

If you are wondering how to deal with them in the most professional way possible, here are some practical tips for you:


Never take it personally.

Some nurses get too emotional and sensitive. As professionals, we need to be resilient. Focus more on your priorities. Remember that most doctors get frustrated by the situation, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they hate you personally.


Always remain calm.

Don’t reciprocate anger with another negative emotion. Try to stay as calm as you can and start dealing with the problem at hand. Never respond with anger.


Ask what the problem is.

You need to know what caused the doctor to be angry, the consequences it may have brought and how you can help to fix it. Every problem comes with a solution. If you will be able to identify the problem, then you can also come up with solutions to deal with it.


If it is your fault, apologize.

Sometimes, the doctors are just waiting for an apology. It will not make you less of a person if you learn to recognize and accept your mistakes, and apologize for them. We all make mistakes, but make sure that you will learn from yours.


Tell them how you feel.

Be respectful while you do this. Communication is the best key to a healthy relationship, and it is best that you have a good relationship with the doctors you work with.

Also Read: 20 Effective Ways to Deal With Angry Patients (And Families)
Help resolve the issue.

You can start by thinking of options, cancelling out whatever you think will not help with the problem and choose the best one. Again, someone who is angry about something will calm down as long as you listen and try to compromise.


Understand that doctors are often tired.

And you know how cranky people could get when they are tired and stressed out with work. Just offer some help and let them know that you are there to listen and help. If you keep this point in mind, you will realize that you shouldn’t really feel bad whenever they get angry; instead, you should help them realize that getting mad at people will never solve issues.


Shake it off.

Nurses have always been known to be very resilient and tough. They go through so many events in a day, and they still get back to work energized and strong the next day. Learn how to shake things off after a certain confrontation with a doctor. Tomorrow is a new day!


The bottom line is that you have to maintain your professionalism even when in the middle of an argument with a doctor. You have to remember that you are a nurse and nurses are there to give quality care to patients. You are just doing your job so continue doing what you love doing — helping other people get better.


About the Author: Mary Elizabeth Velarmino Francisco earned her Bachelor of Science in Nursing Degree from the Ateneo de Zamboanga University, Philippines. She is always happy to share her passion for writing and blogging. With coffee running through her veins, she enthusiastically battles each day, one article at a time.