Embarrassment detours us away from knowledge. Assumptions interfere with understanding. Ignorance leads to poor decisions. And so, let’s exchange some thoughts about . . .
I thought about these three—embarrassment, assumptions, ignorance—when I finally spent a few moments learning about a health concern that has been frequently referenced during my hospice’s weekly patient care meetings.
While reviewing patients, all of them nearing death, we mention odd words like cachexia and ascites. I eventually learned what those meant. We have discussions with health care medicalese like POLST, PRN, and SOB. The meaning behind those acronyms became second nature to me. I also didn’t have to ask a nurse or do a web search for “anticipatory grief” or a Foley catheter. There were some things I already knew!
Years ago, while attending those initial weekly meetings (officially dubbed IDGs, or InterDisciplinary Groups), I recall hearing the term “gas exchange.”
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