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Saturday, May 4, 2013

Battle Zone: Your Local Hospital

Clipart from Clip Art Heaven

Hospital stays, never pleasant, but lately they've become battle zones. In the last month I've been in the hospital, my daughter has been in the hospital, and my youngest daughter was in a car accident. My son-in-law was in the accident with my daughter and he's been in for surgery. Other extended family have also been in the hospital.

We've all come to the conclusion that the hospital is NOT a good place to be. It's also not a healthy place to be. And complaints are rarely acted upon in a positive way. Here are a few instances of what we experienced at local hospitals:
  1. blood drawn without gloves
  2. pic line cared for without gloves
  3. rooms not cleaned (floor had debris on it for three days before the patient crawled under the bed and picked it up)(in another instance the bathroom was not cleaned for the entire stay.)
  4. ceiling tiles had dust bunnies hanging from them so when the heat or air was on you could see them moving with the air circulation, not cleaned for entire stay.
  5. nurse's aid wore heavy perfume causing patient to vomit, when a replacement was asked for politely, the nurses did not come in for the rest of the shift.
  6. drugs were not given on time or at all in some cases. It was scanned into the computer as given but never administered.
  7. waits of over 25 minutes after pushing call button for nursing staff.
  8. food served that was against what nutrition staff said was what the patient needed.
  9. some staff were actively hostile when asked for assistance.
  10. Patient discharged early, hospital blaming it on the insurance company, but when the insurance company was contacted they said they would have approved it.
  11. Commodes left to fill up to the brim.
  12. Commodes with no cover.

OK, so maybe some of those things seem like small things to you, but believe me, no one wants to pick up a hospital borne infection just because someone was too lazy to put on gloves, or didn't do a full job cleaning hospital rooms. And we certainly don't want drugs to be scanned into the computer without being given. We don't want a patient to experience additional bleeding because no one has bothered to check the dietary needs as set forth by the nutritionist. And so on, and so on and so on.

So before your next hospital stay, find out who you need to contact if something is wrong. Know who to call and where to call them. We're looking at possible transfer of a patient at this point, not something we want to do, but...


  1. Oh my gosh Nancy! This is awful. I worked for a hospital before. NONE of these are small things. NOT ONE!! Have yo talked to patient advocacy? I am so sorry your family has been having such a rough time. Is there anything you need?

  2. Aren't meds inventoried by scanning? So if they were scanned, but not given to the patient, where did they go? Obviously they were taken out of stock, as they were scanned. Someone at that hospital is up to no good...

    1. Amanda, some meds that were scanned were topical ointments so they were just not given. But they were antibiotic ointments that were critical to care. I don't know how these nurses sleep at night. Plus my daughter is disabled and I really wonder how much of her slipshod care is a result of them thinking she won't notice what is wrong. Boy did they choose the wrong kid to pick on!!!!!

  3. PS, my father in law died from an infection picked up in the icu. Eeeek

  4. I talked to them, things improved for a brief period of time, then back to the same old slip shod ways. I was horrified. I used to work in a NICU, I know how critical it is to avoid infections. I know just how serious some of these infections are and how easy it is to get one. Suffice it to say "I'm mad as hell and not going to take it anymore!"