Why Nurses Should Rule The World, Part 13

, , , , , | Healthy | September 29, 2019

My mother has Alzheimer’s and lives in a care facility. Not long ago, she was taken ill and they sent her to the local emergency room for some tests as a safety precaution because she can’t communicate and so it was unclear exactly what was wrong with her.

Mum’s husband and a carer went with her from the home and I joined them in the hospital. Understandably, my poor mother, who had no idea what was going on — even though we tried our best to explain — was confused, upset, and maybe even a little frightened.

The nurse taking care of Mum wasn’t unkind as such, but she was brisk and abrupt, and she made little to no effort to try and reassure Mum or interact with her. Again, understandably, Mum became ever more flustered and upset despite our best efforts to keep her calm and reassure her ourselves.

Then, the shift changed, and a new nurse was assigned to take care of Mum. She interacted with Mum; she spoke to her, touched her, calmed her, and reassured her far more than Mum’s husband, the carer, or I had managed to achieve. She even had Mum cooperating.

When Mum was finally released, I went and thanked that nurse for helping a frightened and confused woman feel calm and safe. The nurse was totally shocked that I thanked her. Later, my sister, who’s also a nurse, told me that while people are quick to complain, they rarely say thank you. Nurses do a very hard job, working with people who are ill, frightened, confused, and many other things besides. They’re not perfect, but on the whole, most of them do an amazing job. Please don’t forget to say thank you.

Related:
Why Nurses Should Rule The World, Part 12
Why Nurses Should Rule The World, Part 11
Why Nurses Should Rule The World, Part 10

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