Wednesday, July 16, 2014

"How to be a Patient"

I'm going to start teaching classes on how to be a patient in the hospital.  From my most recent stays here, it is apparent these classes are very, very necessary.  Now I could go the traditional route and teach patient advocacy, and things like, "How to fill out a healthcare power of attorney," but I've got some other ideas I want to teach.  I want to teach how to make a hospital stay a pleasant experience for everyone involved.  I think it might help the staff too - and who doesn't want to help the awesome staff that makes me healthy again?

My first class would be "Patient Basics."  Otherwise known as, "Don't be a pain in the ass."

First rule:  Keep your voice at a level that won't carry to other rooms unless it's a life or death situation.

Other Important Rules:
~The "silence" button on your IV pump is your friend.  Please, call your nurse when your pump beeps and then silence it.  There is no need for you to scream and shout down the hall that your thing is beeping.

~I know being here sucks, I know you're in a ton of pain, you've told your nurse who is currently with you, that you're in a ton of pain.  Stop shouting about your pain.


~Food does not magically appear.  You have to order it and then wait.  Don't yell at your nurse because your food didn't arrive 5 minutes after you ordered it.

~People are nice if you are nice to them, in general.  Smile and talk to the staff - they are humans, too.  It'll make your stay much better.

~Say "Please" and "Thank You" to the staff.  You can't go wrong with being polite.

~Learn the difference between your nurse and your nursing aid.  Know the difference between what each can and can't do.  It'll be really helpful.

I'm going to offer other classes like "Knowing the difference between your doctors" - a class that completely focuses on the differences between medical students, interns, residents, fellows and attendings.  I will teach ways to help them learn how to be good doctors and how to take care of you at the same time.  I can also educate basics about the different specialties and when to ask for a consult or a 2nd opinion.

I think I could also offer a "Fun ways to occupy your time in the hospital" class, full of activities for every level of sickness. Even f you can't even sit up, or if you can just sit in bed, or if you can walk around the hospital, I've got fun activities for you!  IV pole riding, Code Blue Bingo, Sharps Basketball, Making art out of medical waste left in your bed - all WONDERFUL activities.

I could even teach patients how to make edible - possibly even enjoyable - meals out of the stuff that comes up on your tray!

Think I could make a career out of this?

1 comment:

Nicole Gagnon said...

I'd but it, even though I'm a nurse and wife of a CFer so you're preaching to the choir. ;)

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