Thursday, June 7, 2012

Today's Hospitals: Innovations in Technology and Medical Care Part IV

Here's the last part of my topic : Today's Hospitals: Innovations in Technology.
Thanks for taking time in reading my posts. Your comments are welcome :)

Mom assisting daughter with a hospital meal 
Hospital Food is Getting Healthier

The hospital menus can be laden with high-fat comfort foods. There are some medical institutions that have even invited fast-food franchises to set up a stall on hospital premises. But today hospitals are becoming more positioned as models of healthy eating for patients and for employees. Diabetes-friendly, Heart-healthy and vegetarian selections are increasingly common. They also promote organic, and locally produce foods.

Woman advocating for her mother in hospital 
Patient Advocates Can Also Help
Consumer groups say your hospital stay will be safer and comfortable if there is another person there in your room to watch out for you and will be the one to ask questions on your behalf. Most often families assign and ask relatives or close friends to serve as patient advocates.

Woman arguing with nurse in hospital 
Patient Advocate's Strengths
Patient Advocates should be able to help you carry off your care, ask questions, express concerns on your behalf, and will be the one to do the research and keep track of your treatment options and medicines. Advocates are most helpful when they raise their concerns with a healthy dose of kindness and respect. There are families who hire professional patient advocates. Sometimes hospitals have patient advocates on staff already that will help you.

Pregnant woman researching hospitals online 
Quality of the Hospital Goes Public
There are some organizations that make hospital information public so that you can check out the hospitals' quality at anytime you want.There are several ways to find hospital information , including The Joint Commission's "Quality Check" program, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' "Hospital Compare" tool, and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. There are also states that offer hospital quality websites.

I am excited to read your thoughts! Just leave a comment on the comment section. Will be glad to read it. Thanks!!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

How to Choose a Hospital?

We all get ill for various reasons,at any point of our lives and for that we should know ahead of time and be aware of the medical center that can give you imminent treatment or test. It is very important for a patient to know what the hospital's services are that will suit their requirements.

First you make a list of your preferred hospitals, which gives you treatment of your medical condition. For example, if there is someone who needs a heart surgery then it might be possible that a smaller or nearby hospital doesn't provide such surgery. There also hospitals that are unequipped or they don't have specialized doctors to perform the certain procedure.
So How to choose a good hospital?
I have here a few points that you might want to consider:

1. Health Insurance Security: You should check if your health insurance or medi-claim covers that hospital.

2.Doctor Preference: You may have a preferred doctor. In that case, you'll have to check if that doctor is connected with any of the medical centers in question.

3. Distance: Is the hospital located at a convenient distance from your residence? You do not want to choose a hospital which is located very far away. And that the travel would take long and make it difficult.

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4. Security Question: Does the hospital allow an individual to attend by your bedside 24/7? It is very important that you check with the hospital authorities in case you want to look after your dear ones closely. 

5.Privacy Concerns: Do you want to be in private rooms? Does the hospital offers it? There are many medical centers that doesn't offer any private rooms; all they have are general wards. So, if you what to be in a private room because of your medical condition, inquire if your chosen hospital provides it. 

6.Safe or Unsafe: Does the hospital have a safe track record? Every state health department has a track record of every hospital. You can first review the hospitals on your list and find out which one you'd like to choose.
Remember not to forget to ask your doctor about their role in treating you at the hospital. Now, whichever hospital you select and howsoever long you stay; make sure you keep yourself safe.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Today's Hospitals: Innovations in Technology and Medical Care Part III

Detail of a presurgery checklist 
Safety Awareness
When performing complex procedures, even experienced hospital staffs can miss a step. However, to avoid these some hospitals are adapting new methods used in aviation and the military to help them improve patient safety. "Situation awareness" training –It is knowing what's going on with patients at all times .This helps staff in avoiding complications and reduce infection rates. Using checklists and time-outs for final verification before the start of every surgery reduces errors, too.

Doctor washing hands after seeing patient 
Fight against Infections
Hospitals are considered a place of healing. But 99,000 patients are estimated to die each year from dangerous infections acquired during their stay in the hospitals. These mainly include infections of the bloodstream, uti, and surgical sites. But here is the good news: Some hospital-acquired infection rates are dropping, like methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), which declined 28% from 2005 to 2008. The reasons for the drop include increased alertness, improved hand-washing hygiene, and other MRSA-prevention steps. 

Nurse fitting patient with surgical stocking

Fighting Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT)

There are at least 50,000 of patients a year that dies from pulmonary embolism. This is a very dangerous condition to where blood clots most often in the legs travel to the lungs, where they cut off blood flow. The risk factors for DVT or Deep Vein Thrombosis include surgeries and bed rest which is most common for hospital patients. Hospitals reduce this complication through the use of faster treatment and anti-clot medications before surgery, and by encouraging patients to move around after surgery. There are devices like the screening tools, compression stockings that helps the patients recovery. 

Man in hyperbaric chamber at wound care center

Specialty Hospitals Offering Options

There are already hospitals that has its specializations of surgeries, such as heart or spine surgery. Specialty hospitals often uses the very latest resources for their work. So more focused care also can mean acquiring quality care at lower costs.