- Author Brett Van Zyl
- Published March 29, 2012
- Word count 617
If you’ve just found out that you need to check into hospital for an operation, most of your time will probably be spent stressing about the fact that you’re going into hospital.
All the different scenarios of what could go wrong will be running through your mind like an Olympic athlete trying to break a world record. Yes, while it may be difficult not to worry, there are ways to prepare oneself with less stress before being admitted.
A good way to set your mind at ease is to remind yourself that the doctors and nurses involved in facilitating the whole process are professionals; this is what they do everyday. Have some faith in them!
Before going into hospital, here are a few things that you should take into consideration:
If you have a medical aid provider, make sure that all the formalities in terms of paperwork and approval have been taken care of before you’re admitted. Most medical benefit plans will only do business with certain hospitals and clinics.
Find out which hospitals your plan allows you to go to and choose one that will provide the best treatment for your particular situation or condition.
Make sure that you take your medical aid membership card and your ID number with you when you check in. When giving personal information at the front desk, highlight any special requirements you might have, such as food allergies etc.
Bring a list of any medication that you’re taking, this includes allergy medication. Provide information regarding required dosages and how frequently you need to take the medication. The hospital will continue to provide you with any medication that you’re currently taking, but will need all the relevant details to continue to administer them. Make sure that the nurse assigned to take care of you has a list of your important contact information. This way if the nurse needs to contact someone on your behalf then the details are on hand.
Patient safety is an issue that almost always comes up during hospital stays. The release of the report “To Err is Human” by the institute of medicine, shed light on the number of deaths related to hospital infections and human error by medical professionals. In many cases these mistakes could have been prevented. This report placed renewed emphasis on patient safety. In addition to individual patient rights, the
National Patient Rights Charter also addresses issues pertaining to safety.
Safety standards in hospitals and medical centers are continuously evaluated by institutions specializing in the development of safety and quality standards. So there are systems in place that are designed to protect people from human error. For example, administration of blood requires two people to check the patient’s name, hospital number, blood type and personal information before the blood is given.
Most hospitals also have committees that focus on controlling and identifying practices that contribute to hospital related infections (also Known as HAI – Hospital associated infections).
To minimize the chance of getting a hospital related infection get your doctor or nurse to brief you about it when you arrive. Take antibacterial spray and wipes with you and always ensure that you wash your hands with antibacterial soap.
And on a lighter note, take the right clothing. You want to be as comfortable as possible during your stay, so the most appropriate items of clothing would be your pajamas (just make sure you bring more than one pair).
Keep yourself busy and bring something with to keep yourself occupied. Try to bring something more stimulating, such as a captivating book or challenging crossword. This will keep your mind busy and off of the fact that you’re in hospital.