During the summer months people are generally more active which makes both the young and old more susceptible to injury. Unfortunately, fatal accidents tend to increase during the months of July and August as people are out later due to the longer days. More people are on the roads during the evening as they are on the way back from a pool party or a gathering with friends. Parents, spouses, and all types of caregivers need to aware of this volatile period and take caution to make sure everyone returns home safely. It requires vigilance by those whom are driving or responsible for the party they are with to get them home.
Besides for fatal accidents the rate of non life threatening injuries also increases. This includes incidents involving water sports, biking, car accidents, burns, and heat related incidents. Athletes need to be well hydrated as they play during high temperatures and intense humidity which raises the heat index. Dehydration becomes commonplace and requires the patient to be transported by ambulance to a hospital and receive intravenous therapy. Treatment for sprains and broken bones typically is a short hospital stay depending on the hospital and volume of patients in the emergency room. If one is concerned about the wait in a hospital patients can now go to urgent care centers and have the injury addressed sooner than later.
The negative aspect of being treated in a hospital
When one is transported to a local hospital they are cognizant of the injury and anticipate a rather short stay. In most cases the bruise or breakage can be treated in the outpatient section of the hospital without actually being admitted. After they are seen the doctor will evaluate if hospitalization is required. Once a patient is admitted to the hospital they become more prone to infection depending how the immune systems calibrates to the new environment. It’s not uncommon for a patient to contract a random disease which may extend their stay. This tends to occur when infants and older adults that are being treated and their immune cannot address the bacteria which is host in the ambulatory setting.
Why is infection so prevalent in hospitals?
The last place a caregiver would want to take a sick person to is an environment which has bacteria and microbes floating around in the air. Even though these facilities properly dispose medical waste it’s impossible to rid the air from infectious airborne diseases. It would be brilliant if healthcare facilities can incorporate an air filtering system which would lower the levels of infectious air. Types of airborne diseases include the common cold, influenza, chicken pox, measles, mumps, pertussis, tuberculosis, and diphtheria. Today most of these can be combated through proper vaccination but there is always the small percentage of people who get sick even after receiving the vaccine. Though it’s still early, people are asking how effective is the 2018 flu shot? Results from Canada have shown that the flu shot had a mere 17% effectiveness against the H3N2 flu virus. There is not much enthusiasm for those folks who received the flu shot and happen to find themselves in a hospital setting dealing with a summer related injury.
What can hospitals do to prevent patients from contracting non injury related diseases?
Infection prevention starts with one’s self awareness of that bacteria is looming on surfaces everywhere. In a recent study conducted on the bacterial contamination on mobile phones, researchers have found a total of 17,032 bacterial 16S rRNA gene copies per a phone. To get an idea of how much bacteria that is, the toilet seat in the bathroom plays host to 1,703.2 bacteria’s. According to Technology News, the average mobile user spends over four hours a day on their phone. What even more amazing is the people that don’t get sick while interacting with 17,032 bacterial compounds 16% of the day. Since that’s the case it would be beneficial to keep anti bacterial wipes nearby and give those beasts a cleansing. The saying goes “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”. Before we recommend ideas for healthcare facilities its important that we as humans are doing everything in our control to sanitize properly. Keep in mind that during the bubonic plague (which killed an estimate 75 to 200 million people), it was the poor sanitary conditions which helped spread this deadly disease. The concept of taking a daily shower and washing one’s hands with soap was uncommon among humanity.
Getting staff trained an infection prevention
Hospitals, nursing homes, and clinics must make every effort to train its staff on infectious agents like acinetobacter baumannii, clostridium difficile, clostridium sordellii, escherichia coli, hepatitis A, B, & C and others. When a nurse is treating a patient, they should be knowledgeable on how to clean and handle bodily fluids. Improper disposal of bloodborne pathogens is not only a hazard to society but can result in the facility receiving a hefty fine. OSHA training online is readily available and one can get educated on all of the most important aspects of infection prevention in hospitals.
Are there any MRSA hospital precautions that one can take to protect themselves?
When a patient comes to be treated with an open wound they are susceptible to a MRSA infection. Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infection is the result of staph bacteria which is unaffected by antibiotics. This super bug comes from invasive treatment like surgeries, joint replacement, and IV tubing. MRSA has become rampant in hospitals, nursing homes, and clinics and has left doctors puzzled as how to treat it.
Before you or a loved one goes to a medical facility, find out about the sanitary condition of that clinic. There are many websites which you can check the ratings and confirm any negative elements about the environment. Nursing homes that have unhappy residents is typically a result of nursing and personnel shortage. Unfortunately it’s the of owners which seek higher levels of profit and limit the amount of staff to care for its patients. The outcome of a nursing shortage can be an implication of poor handling of medical waste. Try and avoid these types of healthcare facilities when seeking your next treatment. Also always make sure that someone accompanies you and demand proper treatment. After the patient receives anesthesia they will never know how and who is treating them.
Can technology address the issue of airborne diseases in our healthcare facilities?
There are products for sale on the web which are called HEPA Air Purifiers that filter the air from mostly allergens. In most central air conditioning systems there are specific types of filters which allow the air flow and retain allergens and dust particles. Some of the air purifiers claim to fight bacteria but don’t guarantee it. It’s because microbial bacterial is so small that it will pass through most filtering systems. Unlike pollen and dust particles which could be seen bacteria is microscopic hence the name, microbial bacterial. The only way hospitals would be able to filter out all the germs in the air is by having an airflow systems which is able to trap microscopic elements and then cleanse them with an antibacterial solution.
Precedent for patient discharge in a hospital setting
After a person is treated an evaluation of his or hers overall condition is done and vitals are checked frequently. All of the results are noted on record and synced with the patient’s medical records. The doctor will then review all the materials and then determine if they can go home. When dealing with older adults, a nurse or family member at home will be confirmed to assist in the recovery process.
Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust is located in Truro, England and provides treatment to local patients and is affiliated with the Peninsula College of Medicine and Dentistry. This organization put together guidelines on Theatre Practice Standards – Post Anaesthetic Care which includes criteria for patient discharge. Below is a synopsis of the conditions which are required for sending a patient home.
* The subject in recovery is fully cognizant and able to breath on their own with protective reflexes in full swing.
* Patient must maintain normal oxygen levels or that which is suitable for their current condition.
* Blood pressure readings must be approximate to normal which implicates a healthy cardiovascular system.
* If the patient has post anesthesia nausea or pain it should be properly addressed with rest or medication. The nursing staff should be aware that many people don’t take well to anesthesia and may need extra time in recovery until they get back to themselves.
* Temperature should be a normal read and no trace of infection should be present.
Caregivers must make it their business to get the patient out of the hospital setting once it’s been determined that its safe to go home. Waiting around is not only a stress on their loved one but could potentially be dangerous with their immune system not at full capacity. Infectious disease floats around hospitals and the last thing you want is it to find host in someone recovering from post operation. When family is around it will help move along the discharge process quicker. Keep in mind that there are multiple patients for one doctor and caregivers need to be an advocate for them.