|A.Hanson, Minnesota 2014|
I get this question a lot in the hospital as well as outside the hospital. The answer is that I do tons of different things.
Here is a snapshot of what I have done in the last week:
Discussing a patient's wishes for their medical care should they be unable to speak for themselves. Helping them to complete paperwork to appoint a healthcare agent (MDPOA).
Brought a teddy bear to a toddler in the ER who fell off her bed and knocked out several teeth.
Did detective work to figure out the identity of a John Doe patient in the ER. Called county sheriff and asked them to send an officer to the listed address. Found a family member and met them at the doors of the ER. Connected them with healthcare staff.
Found a buddhist monk to visit a buddhist patient.
Read psalms and sang hymns to an agitated elderly patient at the request of a nurse, to assist nursing staff in calming the patient enough for treatment.
Had a discussion with the husband of a patient who was dying. The patient's husband wished she could be at home. Talked about how to make the hospital more home-like. Advocated for patient and family with nursing staff to make these wishes happen (patient's own pajamas and blanket, and being held by her husband).
Sat with a family for hours while doctors attempted to stabilize their loved one who had suffered cardiac arrest. Prayed with them, held their hands, and brought them water.
Prayed with a family whose matriarch had just died.
Visited a teenager who had an accident that left him paralyzed.
Blessed the Cath labs at the request of the staff after they had experienced several tough deaths there.
Served as a designated requester for Donor Alliance, to ask for consent for tissue and cornea donation, from the family of a recently deceased patient.