Archive for Safety

Bed Wars

hospitalbedNo one wants one.

No one likes them.

Some have cranks and levers, wobbly wheels, and are cumbersome to move or adjust.

Newer ones are more complex, have silent electric motors, links for computer cables, and (though pricey) lightweight metal alloy frames.

But who wants to lie in a hospital bed of any kind? Not for overnight, and certainly not for the rest of your life.

I view the hospital bed as one of the intimidating symbols of hospice care. Of course, it’s more than a symbol once it arrives at your home.

Whenever the hospice clinical staff discusses current patients, it’s nearly inevitable that at least one patient has balked at shifting to a hospital bed.

Wouldn’t you refuse? Read More →

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

The Foley Catheter

Where did the Chevrolet brand name come from?

Where does the Chevrolet brand name come from?

Out of respect for the slightly squeamish, the dedicated avoiders, and the overly nervous, I’ll start with a trivia quiz.

What do Louis Chevrolet, Rudolf Diesel, Jack Foley, Bill Gore, Jules Leotard, and John Stetson all have in common?

Have you ever owned a Chevy? How about a Chevy with a diesel engine? While you were driving that vehicle, did you toss a Gore-Tex jacket onto the seat because the forecast called for rain? Before you entered the car, had you been to yoga in your leotard? Maybe, because it’s your favorite hat, a Stetson was already jauntily positioned on your head? Read More →

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Gun Control

“Is it safe?”

That was the riveting question repeatedly asked in the 1976 film “Marathon Man.” In a grim and crucial scene, Laurence Olivier’s menacing character demanded to know—as he used dental tools in the worst way—if what he needed to do could be safely accomplished. Dustin Hoffman’s “innocent man” paid an excruciating price for every hesitation, every uncertainty.

Is it safe?

Is it safe?

I sometimes think of that scene when one of our hospice’s social workers reassures other staff that a patient’s house is “safe.” When we talk about a new patient entering hospice care, the “safe question” must be asked and answered.

Which is to say, are there are any guns in the home?

According to 2012 statistics, 66% of the nearly 1,600,000 hospice patients in the United States were treated at their place of residence by a hospice team. About 27% were in a hospice facility and the remaining 6-7% were served in an acute care hospital.

Obviously, many hospice nurses, aides, social workers, and chaplains will be welcomed into private homes. Read More →

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather