Staying Alive 4 of 6

Now that you have a puppy on your lap as you read your book and have regular checkups with your female doctor what else can you do to stay alive?

Next: Stay Out of the Hospital!

fullsizeoutput_211a

There was a time when the term “hospital clean” meant sterile and spotless. Today, unfortunately, the meaning could be the opposite. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) lists nineteen nosocomial (hospital-acquired) infections three of which are antibiotic resistant. These can be life-threatening infections and they are transmitted in various ways including, but not limited to, patient to patient. Viruses and bacteria can also be spread by health care workers, contamination of furniture and other articles and through the air.

Hazards other than infection can result from surgery, treatment, immobility, and falls. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) tracks the rate of the following complications resulting from hospitalization: (notes are parentheses are mine)

  • Pressure Ulcer (bed sore)
  • Pneumothorax (lung collapse)
  • Fracture (broken bones from falls)
  • Hemorrhage or Hematoma (bleeding)
  • Acute Kidney Injury Requiring Dialysis (kidney failure)
  • Postoperative Respiratory Failure
  • Perioperative Pulmonary Embolism or Deep Vein Thrombosis (blood clot during surgery)
  • Postoperative Sepsis (serious, often life-threatening, infection of blood or other tissue)
  • Postoperative Wound Dehiscence (incision opening following surgery)
  • Unrecognized Abdominopelvic Accidental Puncture/Laceration (accident in surgery of the abdomen or pelvis)

What Can You Do?

There are times when hospitalization cannot be avoided. During those times one has little choice but given the option of outpatient care that is usually the best recourse. Understanding the risk of infection, in particular, should make one hesitant about visitation in hospitals. Situations vary and there are times when a hospitalized patient needs someone with them. If that is not the case protect yourself and them by waiting until they return home for visits. 

“A hospital is no place to be sick.” Samuel Goldwyn

Writing this reminds me of many years ago when I was in the hospital for a couple of days. My then eleven year-old daughter gave me a book for a gift when I left home to have surgery.   Although I no longer have that book, I clearly remember the title, “Staying Alive!” Thanks for the smiles, Allison!

Theme graphic & photo by Pixabay

Stress Test

A Test of Stress

She (we’ll call her “Barb”) dressed in her exercise clothes and walking shoes and set out early for the hospital; so early that the rush hour drivers were still at home flossing and spraying.

As she pulled into the parking lot Barb had her choice of primo spots, but hardly appreciated this because her mind was on the fact that her system was as empty of caffeine as the lot was of cars.

The person at the front desk could have been a bit more friendly, but the sign-in process was simple and Barb was ready for the treadmill which looked less than the expected state-of-the-art equipment.

Reba Raines didn’t seem all that enthusiastic as she pointed and indicated that Barb should move to the machine. “Straddle the belt” she directed in an absent-minded way. Barb complied, at least she thought she did but she heard again with more presence, “Straddle the belt!” so she quickly moved her feet to the treadmill frame and watched as the belt began to go slowly forward. Barb stood awkwardly until given the command to “walk” and assumed that she was not expected to walk where her feet currently were so she carefully stepped onto the belt.

It didn’t take long to reach the target heart rate . . . it will take days before the results are relayed to Barb who left for the nearest cup of coffee.

pulse-153388_1280

Graphic by Pixabay

Hospital Heist

pexels-photoWhen we hear of a theft from a hospital most of us immediately think: “drugs.We hear of employees who slip syringes and pills into their pockets for self consumption or for sale and know they do this at great risk of being caught and punished. Addiction is at powerful epidemic proportions in Kentucky at this time, so hearing a news report of a hospital theft is not shocking.

Once though, twelve years ago I read of a theft at a hospital in Owensboro, KY that was of more interest. In fact, so unique I clipped the article from The Courier-Journal and still have it today to share with you. Here are some of the facts, perhaps you can help me to understand what might have been the motive of this particular hospital heist. The theft took place on Christmas Eve, so perhaps the culprit just needed something to give her family members on Christmas morning? Or maybe the loot was going to be sold at a late night pawn shop to support a drug habit? It is sad to imagine this individual desperate enough to risk being caught by surveillance cameras watching her as she committed this crime.

Those electronic eyes did their jobs well and saw this person clearly as she lifted 50 artificial eyes from a lobby display case. And, the best part of all in this tale? The person arrested was Melissa Jane Wink.

I swear and here’s my proof: 

img_3598

Theme photo by Pixabay