No one was available the day that Suzy needed someone to go with her dad to the doctor. She decided to take the day off from her job and take him. The receptionist could see the strained look on her face. Suzy knew that she would need to go into the doctors office with her dad but had forgotten her note pad.
She approached the receptionist and asked for a piece of paper and pen. The receptionist smiled and pulled out a very decorative pad and pen with the doctor’s name on it. “Here use this, the doctor wants all the caregivers to have something to record their questions and answers.”
The smile, notepad and pen made this facility CAREGIVER FRIENDLY!
Do you have some suggestions for making a facility or person CAREGIVER FRIENDLY?
I just read an insightful post that looked at the impact of anesthesia and antibiotics plus other factors on Alzheimers. I just took my mom for a procedure but never asked about the type of anesthesia and which one had a worst effect on dementia.
This post looks at several things that can help or hurt Alzhemers. I was very excited that online searches can really keep us sharp. So, back to my ebay research for better brain health.
Here is the very good post on alzhemers and how anesthesia, antibiotics and other factors impact the disease.
Ray and I have several reasons for deciding to delay or plain just not retire! Many of those reasons are captured in a blog post I just read.
What about you? Are you delaying retirement? If yes, why?
1 Make eye contact with both the caregiver and the person getting care when discussing medical alternatives, instructions or concerns.
So often the caregiver providing the information for a loved one is the only one who receives eye contact from the health professional. Now, it is natural to speak to the person speaking. But a quick connection with the person who is being talked about will involve that person no matter what the level of retention might be.
How does this help the caregiver?
Well, it makes the caregiver feel that they are not the only one involved in the decision making. Note that I said “feel” because it many cases they are the only ones who are making decisions. However, it also feels good to know that the health professional has not, in haste, left your loved one out of the discussion.
Take the case of Sally O who sat in a consultation with a doctor with her mom who was 89 years young with dementia. She listened as the doctor and his young attendee explained the effects of the new drug they wanted to use on her mom’s condition. She knew she would have to repeat every thing that was shared in a user friendly way later at dinner.
But Sally wanted the doctor to just look at her with some sort of assurance, some sort of hope. Then she would probably feel less alone in the process of dealing with her mom’s condition. Her eyes looked to the doctor and shifted towards her mom to give her a clue to look at her. But the doctor just asked her to explain it to her again later.
But the young attendee saw her body language que and took her hand and said “I hope you feel better.”
Sally only wished that the young attendee was ready to open her own practice.
What tips do you have?
For me being Caregiver Friendly, range from complex to completely simple. Many, many are preforming tireless acts, intervening with time and life saving steps plus more. Some are acts of volunteers and others are the hand holding and kind smile from a health professional to a caregiver.
I pondered over how good it would be to focus on this area after a recent visit to a doctor. My mom had to have an iron infusion. A wonderful nurse, named Veronica, said, “Sometimes, when we have a vacant recliner we make our caregivers lie down and take a nap”. She must have seen the fatique in my eyes and directed me to an empty recliner with a blanket. I hope I never forget that day. That room in that hospital was “Caregiver Friendly’.
Sure, I have lots of ideas just from those things I have observed while in the emergency room, doctor offices or even the grocery store. I have listened and chatted with many caregivers. Everyone has stories of pain and joy. The joy may be there in the midst of the pain. Yet, some have joy. A kind word spoken to them by a health care worker or fellow caregiver goes a long way to healing the drama associated with caregiving.
In the midst of the business of taking care of the needs of your loved one many health professionals are hard pressed to accomodate the caregiver. There are so many people to help and sometimes so few staff to preform do things that can make a facility Caregiver Friendly. But we must try.
I want everyone reading this article to help make it go viral. Please, share what you, an organization or office is doing. Please share your ideas and suggestions as a comment . Place a number next to the idea, suggestion or comment. I really am tallying all of them up. I really do want to reach 999 tips, ideas and best practices.
Thank you for caring.