Few things are more stressful then being in the hospital. The very fact that a person is there means that something frightening, serious, or potentially dangerous is going on – otherwise that person wouldn’t be in a hospital. Scary statistics about medical errors are frequently spotlighted on the news, friends have probably regaled you with tales of their own medical horror stories, and you may have some horror stories of your own. To top it off, when you need to be hospitalized you are likely imagining every possible thing that could go wrong.
Read this guide early, preferably before there is even a thought of hospitalization for you or a loved one in the forseeable future. Use Your Hospital Guide as a general educational tool to familiarize yourself with the environment, culture and personnel of these medical institutions. If you or someone close to you is going to be hospitalized, take a deep breath. You can maintain a fair amount of control in a hospitalized situation. Your Hospital Guide will help you work with doctors, nurses, therapists, and other hospital personnel to get the best care possible for yourself or your loved one.
Your Hospital Guide is divided into sections. Section One: First Things First, includes the introduction, which provides a brief overview or “tour” of the book, as well as a chapter elaborating on my most adamant piece of advice to you: always have someone with you in a hospital. It also has a chapter that briefly discusses the subjects of advance directives (who you want to make medical decisions for you if you for some reason become unable to do so yourself, and how you would like those decisions to be made) and code status (a written order that specifies whether a person is to be resuscitated in a medical emergency if they stop breathing or if their heart stops), since hospital personnel will ask you about these when you are hospitalized, and you should understand them.
My next book posts will convey content from this first book section. I hope you find the content helpful and informative. Please leave comments to let me know what you think, and please ask questions!