Sometimes things aren’t always thought out as well as they should be and in terms of our patients we need to be very understanding.
I’m guessing at one point or another everyone reading this blog has been sick. Have you ever been sick at a convenient time? Did your plans change because you were sick? Illness or injury are never convenient yet things happen.
Every day we have the privilege of caring for someone who’s having less than their best day. It’s important that we keep in mind the position our patients are in. If you work with me and you’ve ever told me you’re having a bad day you know my response is as follows. First, I am sympathetic and compassionate and I want to understand the reason for your bad day because I want to help it improve if within my power. Second, I almost always follow it up with “no matter how bad your day, you’re here and I appreciate that, our patients should never know you’re having a bad day because I guarantee you many of them are having a much worse day than you”.
There are a few simple things we can do to make an unplanned bad day better for our patients. First, we can make sure they understand that we’re here to help. We can explain what we’re doing and we can manage up other caregivers involved in their care. We can alleviate anxiety. Second, we can be sympathetic and kind and we can smile. Never underestimate the power of a smile. Third, we can escort them wherever they need to go. Our facilities aren’t large and for the most part they are easy to navigate but escorting a patient to their next stop is a great way to manage up the service they are seeking and it shows that their time is important to you. When you escort someone where they need to go they realize that they are important to you and your concern for them is evident.
Practice the 10-5 rule, escort don’t point and check your problems at the door. Three simple ways to help someone’s unplanned bad day be a little better. No one plans to get sick and our mission is to keep our patients from say “now what”.