Older Adults Patient Education Issues Essay and Interview
Write a 500‐750‐word essay on the influence patient education has in health care using the experiences of a patient. Interview a friend or family member about that person’s experiences with the health care system.
Personal Interview with Joanne Burnside a 70-year-old female family friend who is a retired registered nurse. She is divorced with two grown daughters one of which is also a registered nurse (Hilary) who lives about 20 minutes away and the other (Amy) is on disability for bipolar manic-depressive disorder as well as physical disability due to degenerative back disorder who lives with Joanne. Joanne was recently hospitalized due to a urinary tract infection that led to sepsis.
- What was the reason for your most recent hospitalization?
I don’t remember how I ended up in the hospital apparently, I had been there a few days before I understood what was actually happening. My daughters had to tell me what had happened. Amy had found me on the floor and had called my oldest daughter Hilary, who came over to help. The girls told me that I was very weak and confused. They called EMS and I was transported to the nearest emergency room. Well, it turns out that because of a urinary tract infection I had become septic. I was really weak and was unable to take care of myself. I ended up being in the hospital for about two weeks. The first week on Med Surg and the second week I was moved to the rehabilitation floor.
2.Did a patient education representative give you instructions on how to care for yourself after your illness or operation?
I remember meeting a service coordinator after being transferred to the rehab floor. The doctor, nurses and service coordinator had set up some treatment goals for me in order for me to be able to return home (be able to walk with assistive devices for more than a few feet and be alert and oriented x 4). I had to attend physical and occupational therapy to build up my strength and to learn how to use assistive devices in order to be able to get around my house on my own such as a walker which I really hated because it made me feel old.
- What were these instructions?
My oldest daughter had spoken to my physical therapist and the two of them had met with the service coordinator and doctor about setting up home health care for additional help because I wasn’t quite ready to do it all on my own yet and my home need to be rearranged so it was easier for me to get around once I got there.
4.Did a health care professional, pharmacist, nurse, doctor, or elder counselor advise you on your medication, diet, or exercise?
While I was the first floor of the hospital the doctor had started me on an IV antibiotic and fluids. I had my blood drawn daily he explained to me that it was to see if the antibiotic was working. After I was transferred to the rehabilitation floor, he was able to switch me to oral antibiotics.
The nurses that I had were encouraging and supportive of me. They even gave me a menu so that I could choose my meals which helped me eat better.
My physical therapist was encouraging and would work with me a couple of times a day. I started out in a wheel chair he had showed me some exercises I could do in bed or sitting in the chair to help my gain strength.
5.What did they advise?
I was advised to finish all my medication and was given handouts on sign and symptoms of a urinary tract infection. I also had do have a follow up with my primary care doctor and he filled out forms for my oldest daughter for FMLA so that she could take care of me while I was recovering.
6.Who assisted you at home after your illness or operation?
I wasn’t in a good place I ended up being medically retired because I had missed too much work and rebounding from this illness took much longer that I had anticipated. My daughters worked together with the nurse that had come in from the home health agency for an additional month. They assisted with my meals and made sure I was drinking plenty of fluids. They helped me get to the restroom, assisted with my shower and getting dressed until I was strong enough to start doing things on my own.
- Do you know of any assistance services, i.e., food, transportation, medication, that would help you stay in your home as you get older?
I’m fortunate I have two daughters one lives with me and one lives close to me and they have helped me to continue to be able to stay in my home. The service coordinator also informed them of transportation services for Medicare patients. I would use the home health care services again they really helped me get my strength back I am hesitant and worry about moving out of my home and into a long-term facility.