This week I’ve had a slightly difference experience to the ones I usually blog about for HC Link. A close family member of mine has had surgery and is in the ICU. While I certainly have lots on my mind at this time, I also can’t help looking around me and noticing the ways that hospitals promote the health of their patients and their families.
My first experience of this hospital was when my family member and I met with the surgeon several weeks ago. A hospital fundraiser was underway. Understandable that fundraisers are necessary, but selling Krispy Kreme Donuts?
Yesterday in the ICU waiting room, I noticed a series of wall displays of patient information. Good idea, as many people in that waiting room are there for hours at a time (as most of the time you can only visit your loved one for 10 minutes at a time). However this one gave me pause:
Social isolation is one of the factors that influences health -- social inclusion is one of the social determinants of health recognized in Canada -- and I can only imagine how feeling isolated and alone makes patients feel and affects their healing. The impacts of social isolation and the benefits of social inclusion aren’t always recognized. I think this empty display speaks to the lack of resources available not just in this display, but overall.
Now to the good news.The hospital does address isolation by allowing visiting at any time.
This hospital -- like many -- has a program to allow vulnerable-feeling pedestrians to walk to parking lots, bus stops and residences safely. A quick call to hospital security gets you a burly escort to your destination of choice.
And here’s one from a BC hospital that HC Link’s Robyn Kalda took: humour and hand washing!
I could go on, but I need to get back to the hospital. Healthy healing everyone!