"The best and the worst communication from nurses"
About: The Royal Victoria Infirmary / Neurology The Royal Victoria Infirmary Neurology NE1 4LP
Posted by Florence2014 (as ),
When a patient attends hospital they are likely to be apprehensive. Human compassion for, and courtesy towards, other human beings should not be too much to hope for.
I recently attended my local hospital for a lumbar puncture. On arrival outside the ward, and feeling anxious, I buzzed for entry as directed and heard "push the door", spoken very abruptly. When I reached the nurses' desk I found a staff nurse with her head down, writing notes, who did not look up or speak, although it was obvious that I was there. I assumed that it was the same nurse who had opened the door, since she was sitting beside the entry button. As I waited in front of her with no acknowledgement of my presence, wondering how long to wait before having to interrupt her, an administrator arrived and directed me to a waiting area. I found myself wondering if the nurse had ever heard of the current 6 'c's nursing initiative, several of which were not in evidence (Care, Compassion, Competence, Communication, Courage, Commitment).
Shortly afterwards things improved with the arrival of the nurse who was to remain with me: Gwen was cheerful, reassuring and professional - everything her colleague was not. The procedure was duly completed, with the nurse and doctor involved both demonstrating professional skill and understanding. Unfortunately, first impressions are very powerful and I would hate to have been in the 'care' of the person on the desk, too busy to look up for even a moment to offer any courtesy or welcome to a patient. It would not have taken more than a few seconds and would have made such a difference.