Friday, July 6, 2007

Black line finger

This is the black impression that occurs on the middle finger due to constant pressure from a pen.

CMS has now required that anesthesia document in their records when the pre-operative antibiotics were given. The main problem, anesthesia is not who are giving the antibiotics! They are given in the holding room. So again we have anesthesia having to run around to find that information and document it rather than taking care of the patient.

Often when going to the floor to see a patient in the hospital, I am amazed as I can't find any of the nurses. When I ask where they are, the answer is usually in the back doing charting. I understand now why there is a nurse shortage, there is not enough of them to do all the paperwork. When I asked JACHO and CMS representatives about the amount of paperwork, the answer was "to improve patient care".

I would rather have the nurse take care of my patients than their chart.

1 comment:

SeaSpray said...

I think I experienced a nursing shortage while in the hospital last week. When I had them - they were great.

I think what you are describing is ludicrous. What is the purpose for this? A final check to be sure the patient has been given the antibiotics? Why can't nursing or unit secretary document that they were given and then the anesthesiologist just has to verify their documentation without having to leave the patient?

I heard the ED nurses frustrations all the time. There are good things that come from some of this but it is overkill for a lot of it too.

I also think our overly litigious society has something to do with this too. I feel for doctors who have to get all squirrelly about protecting themselves from lawsuits.

Off topic but I remember after an exam the OBGYN doc was livid as he was discussing his malpractice insurance with me and how that the next year he might not even continue practicing in NJ, but he never left. He was fuming though and he was a real easy going guy.

Things seemed so much simpler 20 years ago but then maybe more mistakes were made, etc,. Yet it would seem things could go south with short staffing due to budget constraints and then as you said these nurses being pulled from direct patient care to push the papers through.