How do you know if your senior will have the best care while in a hospital?
I don’t like hospitals and am not the only one. Not just to be treated there (luckily I’ve been safe and sound so far), but I also don’t like visiting people in hospitals. This may sound cruel, but whenever I go there, I suddenly get a strange feeling in my stomach.
Hospitals can be inhospitable places, thus it is important to not only prepare your senior for their time there, but yourself as well. Also, don’t omit any important information when talking with the doctor about your senior’s condition.
These are some helpful tips that will keep you safe during your time in a hospital.
Tips When Choosing a Hospital
When choosing a hospital, try to avoid freestanding emergency centers. These ERs are usually poorly equipped compared to a hospital’s ER. Before making a final decision, call several facilities and check if they have experience in treating your senior’s condition. Not all facilities are the same.
Tell the Doctor Everything
Make sure the doctor knows everything. Tell them about your senior’s condition and if they have any record of any other disease. They need to know what medicines they are taking, and were taking in the past. Are they allergic to any substance or were there any side effects? Don’t forget to mention any alternative medicines they may have taken.
If the hospital staff introduces a new medicine, ask how it should be taken. Before or after a meal? How many times a day and when exactly should your senior take it? It is also good to know what could happen in case of overdose and what the common side effects are.
Ask doctors and nurses about everything you need to know, but don’t do it while they are doing something important. The bottom line is – make sure you know everything you need to know, but don’t distract them.
Make Sure Everything Is Clean
You are in a hospital and you may expect everything is 100% clean. Wrong! Germs are everywhere, so make sure your senior has alcohol wipes beside them all the time. Clean all the bars and handles they touch, and make sure they know how important it is to wash their hands before every meal. Their immune system is weaker than usual so they may get infections easily. Also, it would be good to check it the medical staff washes their hands.
Hospital meals may not be 100% safe for your senior when combined with the medicines they are taking. If a certain food is high in potassium, for example, it may affect their cardiovascular system. To avoid that, ask nurses and doctors what foods should be avoided.
If you have time, it would be good if you could stay a night or two in the hospital, especially at the beginning. That way you will be by your senior’s side to calm them down in case they wake up in the middle of the night, not knowing where they are. This way, the transition to a hospital doesn’t need to be so stressful. It can be exhausting for you, but a few days in a hospital will be very helpful for your loved one.
When taking your older adult to a hospital, you should pay attention to various things. Staying safe in a hospital should be your and their primary concern. Choose a hospital wisely, tell the doctor everything, and don’t expect it to be 100% clean. Follow all these steps to achieve peace of mind and know your loved one is perfectly safe.
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