If you are looking for a new book to read and have an interest in how the humanity of patients and families can be maintained while under hospital care, you may wish to check out Through the Valley of Shadows by Samuel Morris Brown.
Using insights from cognitive psychology, Dr. Samuel Brown discusses new approaches to reduce suffering for patients and their families when they need high levels of care, including concrete strategies to apply before, during, and after a serious illness.
What would it be like to be an ICU nurse? Below is the introduction to a blog post that provides some insight into this question.
We received a MET call (Medical Emergency Team) from the general ward to immediately come and assist. The patient’s name was Mr. ‘Stevens’. He was 81 and was in our hospital due to severe exacerbations of COPD. He was in acute respiration distress and had a low blood pressure. There was no time to discuss whether he should come to the intensive care unit or not. Mr Stevens had never discussed this before with his doctor, nor with his sons and in this moment of distress, it was now an option for him. The only thing that was clear was that he wanted to be relieved of his shortness of breath, his pain and his anxiety. There was no chance to talk about the consequences of the decision to enter intensive care. The urgency of the situation forced him to just accept it.
However, in his eyes you could see that he had much to say… there were words that he couldn’t get out, things he wasn’t able to say when he arrived. We all knew this when we saw him coming in to our unit. We could see the emotion, bubbling under the surface, all the feelings he wanted to express, but couldn’t any longer, simply restrained by his utter weakness in the final hours of his life.
The above video – “The Difference Between Care and Caring” recently won a number of local and national awards, including Best in Show at Edmonton’s ACE Awards.
What an incredible night for the Royal Alexandra Hospital,” Andrew Otway, president and CEO of the Royal Alexandra Hospital Foundation, said. “This was a video that really came together so beautifully and effectively because of the staff and leadership at the Royal Alex. We are so immensely proud of this hospital, the people who work here, and the difference they make each day.”
Click here to read more about the video and the family involved.
Negative relationships can exist between physicians and their presence can impact patient care. As Dr. Karthikesan explains, “The doctor-patient relationship paradigm depends closely on the doctor-doctor relationship. Bad and damaging cultures foster a hostile atmosphere that erodes trust, tarnishes good communication and promotes disrespect within the medical community. The role doctors play in harming each other ubiquitously affects the patient’s care, however unintentionally. The question becomes, how can the relationship between physicians be improved or as Karthikesan asks, “So what went wrong in the noblest of professions and how do we fix it?”