Patient safety – Day 1: My Patients are Someone’s Loved Ones

“What is the worst thing this could be” – something we tend to forget when it comes to patient care.   The film on Lewis Blackman was extremely powerful and heartbreaking for me; very grateful that Helen came out to share her story though it is very tragic (I do not think I would have been able to if I were her).   The story brought us some really significant points of patient safety.  It is very crucial to have effective communication with the team members including the family members.  We always have to be aware that the family members, for the most part, know the patient quite well, therefore, collateral information is always helpful.  Poor communication and coordination struck me the most since the nurses, residents and the attending all assumed that Lewis was “fine” and most probably the family was overly concerned.  The lack of communications and wrongful assumptions predisposed the patient to a detrimental error resulting in death.  One thing I constantly remind myself (does not matter how exhausted I am) that my patients are someone’s loved ones and it is my full responsibility to take care of that individual to the fullest.