I am frequently hospitalized because I have Crohn’s Disease and I am relating things that have happened to me. You need to stay on top of what’s going on when you are in there to protect yourself. Don’t ever assume that the hospital is doing everything right when providing care to you.
Secondly, if at all possible, have your spouse or another loved one with you that knows your health problems and medications to be sure that the hospital is giving you the proper treatment and medications. If you were hospitalized as many times a year as I am, you would understand why I am stating this.
Be prepared with a couple lists that show your current medications (prescriptions and over-the-counter ones) and a list of your current health problems. Keep this information up to date because, usually, when you have to go to the hospital, you aren’t feeling good and possibly in a lot of pain. You surely aren’t going to update this information just before you are heading for the hospital. And know where this information is so you can grab it as you are heading out the door for the hospital. Have extra copies with you because, sometimes, the doctors or nurses don’t return the information to you after they plug it into their computer…..like what happened to me during my most recent hospitalization a couple days ago.
I have written about our local hospital several times in the past and always had positive things to say about the experience. Not this time. It was not good. Anything that could go wrong seemed to happen to me.
I get to the ER and have to wait over two hours in the waiting room. I had some internal bleeding and was worried as to where this bleeding was coming from.
Once I get in to an ER room, the doctor waiting for me, wrote down my current medicines, and how I am taking them, incorrectly. I had this information on a sheet and expected that they wouldn’t make a mistake. I take over 30 pills a day so it is rather important that I receive all my medicine, and at the correct times. Make sure that you get the doctor or nurse to show you a copy of the medicine that they are using to medicate me and get any errors straightened out right away.
This hospital visit, the nurses assumed that the list they were using was correct the way the doctors had prepared it and they wouldn’t call in a doctor and get it corrected. Can you imagine them not listening to me, the patient? It wasn’t until the day I was being discharged that I was able to get the correct medicines and at the times that I was supposed to get them. I finally had my wife go to the In-Charge Nurse and she came to my room with the attending nurse.
Going three days and not receiving my correct medicine and asking them over and over again to call a doctor and get the matter handled caused my wife and I both to be a little upset! Wouldn’t you be upset if it happened to you? Anyway, when the nurses came to my room, I sat up and raised my voice regarding my attending nurse and her not listening to me. Oh my God, they called the hospital security (their police) and stationed them outside my door like I was a criminal, which embarrassed me a great deal. So, be sure you don’t raise your voice if you are a patient, or this same thing could happen to you. This is something that I will never forget and it will be covered in the report that the hospital requests that you fill out after each stay.
Also, keep an eye on the nurses when it comes to things to which you are allergic. Every single time that I have blood drown or IVs installed I have to make sure that they don’t use regular tape, to which I am allergic.
When blood is drawn or IVs installed, don’t let a nurse continue to poke you more than a couple times. Request that someone else perform this function. Don’t worry about hurting someone’s feelings. This is your body that they are messing with.
That’s enough. These are things that can happen to you and how hospitals can be hazardous to your health. When a hospital has no competition, they start thinking that you have to do what they want you to do. But you don’t. It is your body that they are treating and they have no right to mistreat you, the customer.