So, you’re in the hospital, your nurse has been out of training for three weeks, and she makes two mistakes. What do you do?
A) Ignore them and hope they don’t kill you
B) Yell at her and threaten to call your lawyer
C) Scream “there’s someone pretending to me a nurse in my room”
D) Point out the two mistakes and ask her to correct them
Well, my nurse removed a cap from my port, which exposed it to room air. Luckily, she had clamped it, otherwise I think it may have started spraying/leaking blood? I’m afraid to ask what happens with an open line. Possible infection?
Then while she was replacing the extension, she forgot to prime it with saline, nearly pushing a 6-inch section of air into me. Not sure it would have done anything, but I wouldn’t want to risk seeing if my blood stream could absorb all of it.
She thanked me for pointing out her mistake. But after that I got attitude for the rest of the day. It didn’t help that I didn’t trust her and questioned other decisions she made, which wore on both of us.
Then when my wife and daughter came they could feel the tension. Being in the hospital is bad. Having a pissed-off nurse adds a “power drill to the head” layer to the experience.
So, after four days of a mix of excellent nurses and mistake-making green nurses, I took matters into my own hands and called the Panda floor and asked if they had an open room. Luckily, one just opened up, and for reasons unknown, they like me.
Within 30 minutes I was kicking it on a floor where I don’t feel like a mutant and nurses are more experienced in Panda care.
And oh what a difference it makes. I didn’t realize how stressed I was dealing with mistakes and the fear of them. Now I’m where I belong and I can be low-key and not bother anyone. I can sit and write on my iPad, watch ESPN and eat my bamboo without fear of an electric zoo prod to my fluffy, cute panda rear.
[photo of panda by Richard Giles, Creative Commons]