Thursday, June 19, 2014

I found Room 3

"Where's the lady from room 3?"
I looked through the open room 3 door....empty.
The Physician Assistant's question was a good one.

I had been kind of busy.
You see I was working Convenient Care (known as Fast Track or Urgent Care in some hospitals), and I was the only nurse, without a tech, due to a call out.
Convenient Care is supposed to be quick in and out visits, nothing complicated, but I had all 9 rooms full with 3 IV's going and one admission.
Naturally, room 3 was the admission.

The PA called XRay, who had taken room 3, and inquired what was taking so long.
"You brought her back how long ago?"
This was going from bad to worse.

The PA was out the door, muttering how room 3 didn't seem like the type of person who would just walk out.
While she was gone, it hit me, why was the door on room 4 closed?
I knocked, opened and there was the lady from room 3, sitting patiently on the stretcher.

You have to understand, from out side the room, they all look the same.
And, from inside the room, they all look the same.

We hadn't lost our patient, just misplaced her.

That would be the end to a humorous story, except it isn't.
Hospitals are being run with less staff each passing day.
This area was staffed by 2 nurses and 2 techs not long ago.

There is great economic pressure placed on healthcare, from the outside and from within.
From the outside, governments are being run leaner than ever and insurance companies like the money they take in and would just as soon keep it in their pockets.
From the inside, hospitals are a for profit business (even the non profit hospitals) and the people who get to make the decisions seem to end up with the profits.

Now if someone starts a mom and pop business with their own capital and sweat equity, and does well financially, then good for them, they took the risks and put in the work, they deserve the rewards.

I don't know anyone who built a hospital from the ground up with their own money, their own risk, and their own sweat.

I know business is business, it's the way of the world, and and all that.......
but this is healthcare, this is people's well being, and we shouldn't be misplacing patients.

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