Tuesday, February 24, 2004


Prescription for health: Taking control of careSurgical site marks

I saw an article in the Freep this morning, while drinking coffee at Panera, on Eisenhower Parkway, where Lone Star used to be, in Ann Arbor.  The newpaper article is about medical errors.  I encourage everyone to read it, especially if they are having problems with the health care system.  It contains many tips such as:
  • Are you sure doctors are operating on the correct site? Ask your operating team to mark the area before they render you unconscious. Many hospitals now require teams to mark the correct site with an X.
There are a few things I would like to add.  Always read the label on the bottle when you pick up prescriptions.  If you have a family member in the hospital, visit often, say hello to the nurses and other staff, and leave flowers, pictures, etc. in the patient's room.  It is much harder for the staff to depersonalize a patient if there are fresh reminders every day of the patient's status as a real person. 

Sometimes the simplest things can make the biggest difference. Sometimes only you can prevent ...