“I expect to pass through life but once. If therefore, there be any kindness I can show, or any good thing I can do to any fellow being, let me do it now, and not defer or neglect it, as I shall not pass this way again. ” William Penn (1644-1718) There are many ways to define patient care in my own words. Doing my job to the best of my ability not only for myself but the patients that are in my care is of the utmost importance.
My dedication to my work is defined by my ability to communicate effectively, actively listen, treat the patient with respect, respect their autonomy and take part in the environment I provide care in. By defining my personal point of view on what good patient care is I am setting my own standards to which I will strive to achieve in work and in life. Communication is in my opinion is the most important thing I can do to provide quality patient care. Being an effective communicator has many aspects to it.
One is to help the patient feel like a human and not another test or number. Calling the patient by their name. Always talk directly to the patient and not “about” the patient. Give appropriate explanations about the procedure and explain what will be happening before, during and after the procedure. Answer any questions to the best of my ability and provide answers or solutions to ones I may not be able to answer, Follow up. Communication is not just speaking but actively listening, is not only verbal but also physical.
Looking someone in the eye when engaging in conversation is a great way to show you are listening. Hearing a patients worries and concerns and maintaining a calm composed presence can help ease their fears. Not taking a patients anger personally. I know that they do not want to be where they are and probably have many concerns. It is my job to be professional and not react to someone who may be rude or angry due to circumstances that have nothing to do with me. Practicing patience is an important skill to develop and hone in the health care field.
Involving a family member or whomever the patient may have brought for support is a good idea. Asking the patient if they would like that person or family member to be in the room during the procedure is a great way to relieve any stress they may have going in. Taking the time to listen and hear the patient while having understanding even in the most undesirable situations is my job as a health care worker. Another Important aspect is my dedication to my work. Making sure my room is clean and organized. Ensuring that every piece of equipment in my care is clean and working properly.
Ensuring the patient is covered and offering a blanket in a cold exam room is one way to make them feel comfortable. Offering a glass of water if a patient is thirsty. Whatever I am able to provide to make the patient more at ease I will. A reassuring smile and a squeeze of the hand may be all they need. Lastly Respect. To respect a patient concerns, questions, family, morals, values and religion is important to providing a quality of care that truly puts the patient first. Patient care has many different definitions, not one answer is wrong or more right than another.
It is important to consider what it means to me as an individual, as well as an employee that represents where I work and to take responsibility for creating a good patient care atmosphere. Patient care to me is always putting the patient first. The patients’ needs, concerns and autonomy all have to be respected. I can only hope that in my time as an ultra sound technician that I can provide the quality patient care that I would want given to my family or myself. As Mr. Penn said, be kind and do good things because we only get one chance.
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