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Nobody is spared the anxiety of a patient in a hospital bed, with the generic food trays, the tubes and the tendency to make awkward jokes inside a tense and often tentative environment. But these strangers are experiencing the same unfamiliar setting, and an immediate bond is formed. These are now your brethren, your people, your family.
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Excessive noise in a health-care environment is not just annoying but studies have shown that it adversely affects patient healing. A U.S. study found the average noise level in hospital wards to be close to 95 decibels -- 10 decibels beyond the noise level at which U.S. federal law requires ear protection for prolonged exposure.
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My family and I essentially lived at the Grand River Hospital's ICU the last two weeks. We were there to give comfort to my mom as she fought a valiant but losing battle with cancer. As odd as this may sound, they were two of the most inspiring weeks of our lives.
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Chances are that if you have been a patient in a large metropolitan hospital or are regularly treated in a teaching clinic, you have interacted with a resident doctor. Medical residency is that crucial period between our first days as newly-certified doctors and emerging as full-fledged, licensed physicians.
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One of the benchmarks that Ontario Minister of Health Eric Hoskins would like to study is patient satisfaction. There are various metrics that he's proposed, including ability to access family physicians within 48 hours, and of course how satisfied patients are with their care. This is all part of wanting health care to be more "patient centred." One would think that if you have a better health-care outcome, you're going to have more satisfied patients. Somewhat surprisingly, however, real world data around this very topic shows that the opposite, is in fact, true.
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Without a doubt, the ones that help me the most are the many wonderful nurses that I have worked with over the years. Without the help of these hard working people, who often have to carry out the most menial and unpleasant tasks, there is simply no way that my patients could get the care they deserve. This is why the current treatment of nurses by the Ontario Government is so appalling and offensive to me.
My son, Jacob, was admitted to the hospital on January 23, 2015 for a respiratory infection complicated by Pelizaeus-Merzbacher disease (PMD), a degenerative neurological disorder. He would turn 13 years old on May 15 and his bar mitzvah, the ceremony and celebration commemorating his entry into Jewish adulthood, was supposed to be May 18.
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While the majority of people haven't found the courage yet to talk with expectant parents about the risk of losing a child, how to survive such tragedies and continue to live, we need to be even more diligent in ensuring that we have experienced specialists in place that are available every time parents are facing the tragedy of losing their baby.
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There are many common misconceptions about CPR -- created, in part, by prime-time medical television programs showing patients being brought back almost miraculously from the brink of death. There's no doubt that CPR can be a lifesaver in certain situations. But CPR is not quite as successful as it's portrayed on TV.
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It seems there is a disconnect between Canadians' personal views and their idea of how well the health system works for society at large. Canadians tout the public health care model as a big part of our national identity, say their experiences are mostly positive -- but then worry the system is failing.
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This isn't just an American problem. Hundreds of thousands of Canadian children are growing up without enough. Low-income children, especially minorities and aboriginals, are growing up at an increased risk of preventable diseases -- diseases both classically medical and mental health related that arise as a result of their early living conditions and will affect us all. These numbers don't simply represent difficult childhoods; they mark a huge group of Canadians who are growing up without the supportive environments they need to develop into healthy adults.
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Instead of falling for false comparators, how can we have a broader, proactive conversation on the future of Canadian health care? Boston's book highlights how isolated and frustrating the experience of a patient seeking treatment for a life-altering disease can be. She describes much of her frustration as stemming from rushed appointments that left little time for asking questions. What improvements in system efficiency or changes to compensation models would enable physicians to spend more time providing quality, patient-focused care?
For those who work in high stress professions, dishing slang is pretty normal. Another important purpose of hospital slang is to help health professionals cope with patients who are in pain and suffering as well as those who die on their watch. There are probably more words and phrases used to talk about patients at or near death than almost any other clinical condition or situation.
In my experience restraints can be traumatic for somebody and usually intensify a situation. I urge the correctional and healthcare system in Ontario to undertake a serious review as to how restraints are used on people because how they're currently being used in my opinion is nothing short of unacceptable, degrading, and inhumane.