Whitney Palmer

Healthcare. Politics. Family.

Patient-centered Care: A Nurse’s Perspective

Published on the Nov. 29, 2012, DiagnosticImaging.com website

By Whitney L.J. Howell

CHICAGO — You might consider yourself and your practice to be fairly patient-centered. Chances are, though, you’re not. Or, at least according to one nurse who’s worked with breast cancer patients for 15 years, you could be doing more.

“You need to see the world through the eyes of the patient,” Lillie Shockney, RN, nurse director of the Johns Hopkins Breast Center Cancer Survivorship Programs, told a group at this year’s RSNA annual meeting. “You need to understand how patients will see, hear, and feel the results – no matter what the news is.”

Always remember these women are scared, and they’re searching for clues about their condition in anything you do. If they can’t see the monitor you’re using to read their scans, does that mean you’re hiding bad news? If you’re out of the room too long, are you discussing something horrific about her case with your colleagues?

You can help allay these fears or help prepare a patient for bad news, Shockney said. Drop hints about what you see during the procedure. While you might not want to explain everything you’re seeing to the patient at that time, giving clues about anything good can help soothe her. Be careful that you don’t provide any false hope, however.

“I’ve been in the presence of some radiologists who’ve said, ‘You’re going to be fine,’” she said. “They were patronizing the patient, patting her on the shoulder, and I knew from looking at the screen that the next day, she was going to get bad news. Patients really do need to be prepared for that.”

To read the remainder of the story at its original location: http://www.diagnosticimaging.com/conference-reports/rsna2012/content/article/113619/2116952

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December 5, 2012 - Posted by | Healthcare | , , , , , , , ,

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