"The only way that patients could be treated without being stressed out is for them to be at home," writes Teresa of Technicalities in a thoughtful post offered with TLC in response to InstaPundit's poignant lament about how hospital routines can wear down a patient's patience. Re his wife's current hospital experience Glenn Reynolds writes:
We just spoke on the phone today and she sounded good -- except that the hospital routine is wearing her down with the constant sleep interruptions. People joke about the sleep interruptions, or about the bad food, but it's really no joke when you're in there for a while. I wonder why they don't do better?
As a former nurse, Teresa has an insider's insight into some of the issues:
There are almost too many dynamics to even make sense of it, but perhaps if we look at a few we can see why hospitals, while necessary, can wear down even the best of people.
Do you run things by the patient's schedule or by a schedule set up in the hospital? The problem with running to the patient's schedule is that every person has their own unique schedule that they operate under when normally at home.
Hospital personnel -- generally operating under severe shortages -- have to accommodate shift changes, time sensitive medication, timing for procedures, and just the general daily care of all the people in the hospital. And many times there is a reason that they do things that seem completely ridiculous to someone who hasn't been given the least clue as to the why.
In the end, the trick is in knowing what is coming at you when you're in the hospital. The constant interruption of rest, the frequent poking and prodding, the stuff that seems crazy with no rhyme or reason. Allow that you are going to get more tired and out of sorts the longer you are in there. Get your procedures done and get out as fast as possible . . . then allow for time at home to "really" recover.
"First, do no harm" -- or some variation of the phrase attributed to Hippocrates -- is the ideal. The reality often falls short.