For the second activity, we watched a video about patient safety. This was a disheartening story about a woman’s mother who had been living at the senior’s care center but had not been very well tended to. The personal support worker (PSW) was the first person to notice necrotic growth on her mother’s heel which led to severe infection. When she alerted the family who went to call the nurse, the nurse replied with, “Your mom is a DNR,” and did not tend to the wound immediately.
When the ambulance was called, there was difficulty in gathering the medical history and medications she was taking due to the lack of communication amongst the staff at the center. When they reached the hospital, they were informed that the infection had spread to the bone and the prognosis was not good. The reflection by the daughter highlighted some shortcomings of the care provided to her mother. The most pivotal of which was the lack of coordination of care between the personal support worker, nurse, and the family.
This video made me reflect on the importance of communication between all members of the team especially the patient and her family members. When discussing the video with my group, we were surprised that the PSW had not spoken up sooner. However, a group member who was a PSW commented on how the hierarchy within the healthcare team prohibited her from speaking up. Hence, it is important that all members of the healthcare team feel the ownership of patient care and that they are a valued member. Some of the suggestions that we had were to call out individuals disrespecting other members of the team. Additionally, we were surprised that the family had not been brought into the discussion at many points during the patient’s care. Hence, we all agreed that this perspective should have been explored and that the onus is on the entire team to be able to incorporate them into patient care.