I am writing this letter to deliver accolades to the nurses of the Medical Daycare Department and Medical Day Care Bookings as well as a “what the heck?” scratch of the head to the hospital administration of St. Joseph’s Hospital. The Medical Daycare Unit is bearing a huge burden of IV antibiotics/blood transfusions/iron infusions and many other procedures for thousands of patients a year with seemingly no support from administration.
Most of these patients in the past would be inpatients. The nurses in this department say they have been advocating for the past 10 years that they need more space and staff to deliver a basic standard of care for the community with what they say is no response. In the last 10 years the number of patients cared for in this department has gone from 334 to 6,125 per year. Patients requiring IV antibiotics have increased from 156 per year to 2,905 per year. Patients receiving iron infusions have gone from 0 to over 1,000 per year. Same four chairs and one nurse.
The administration touts that the patients taking up space in the hospital (alternate level of care) are one of the major problems “bottlenecking” access to inpatient/surgical beds. When patients who are waiting for blood transfusions become so weak that they fall and break a hip while waiting days for a four-hour treatment end up needing months of care in an ALC bed, how is this “managing” community needs? When an elderly patient is in need of heparin injection (their numbers have gone from 51 to 1013 in 10 years) develops lung or leg clots and now is in need of ICU or long-term inpatient care, how is this being fiscally responsible or delivering “care with compassion”?
Only when it is a loved one will it hit home.
I am hoping that the hospital administration use their “masters degree in health care administration” diplomas hung on the walls of their well-furnished offices to do more than cover nail holes. You are charged with managing and administrating the health care of this community. Do your jobs and fix this.
Barbara Mellin, RN