Every day, hospitals are filled with people of all ages who came in the doors from many diverse backgrounds. All of them are looking for the care of an expert. Some may be able to speak for themselves, while others may depend on a relative or other caregiver.
The hope is that doctors will treat every patient with the same level of care and professionalism. While the background of a patient may be a factor for diagnosis and treatment, it should not contribute to negligence or substandard care.
This is what you should watch for when you need to advocate for a loved one’s care in the hospital.
Press for more information
Over the years, negligent care of someone who relies on an advocate for support has gotten subtler. Rather than declaring a patient is not worth their time, a doctor may only give limited information or provide minimal care.
If you get the impression you are not receiving all the information you need to care for your loved one, speak up, and ask questions. While there are times when a diagnosis is straightforward with limited treatment options, you will only know if you ask.
The doctor may have something to learn
Often, when a patient is not able to communicate with words, it is easy to assume they agree with everything that is happening or to bully them into a decision they are not comfortable with. After spending time with that person, however, both in and out of the hospital, you may have a clearer understanding of your loved one’s wants and needs.
While the doctor may understand the medical side of the diagnosis and treatment, the doctor may not understand how what your loved one wants. This is your opportunity to help the doctor understand how this person shows they are comfortable or in pain.