Some studies on COVID state it sheds for more than 90 days. Please protect your family this holiday season. The Healthcare Front line need your help.

If you have a loved who has to be hospitalized for COVID-19 here are the following steps to share with those that are caring for your loved one to help increase communication and decrease the interruption for the care of your loved one. The following is a suggestion we have been doing here at Meridian Medical Dental Healthcare in our community that is an international practice. The first step is to:

1. Create a password to make it quick for the nurse to identify you as a family member or who has permission to share healthcare information. Remember they are trying to protect the patient. Please be courteous and kind.
2. Ask the nurses when is the best time to call and keep it to one family member to call and share the information between family members
3. Ask if they have been started on remdemisivr, ivermectin or convalescent plasma, you may consider asking your family primary care physician to be the advocate to share the information between the hospital and family.
4. Ask if the X ray has had a change.
5. Ask if the Oxygen saturations are improving and how they are receiving the oxygen. You want your loved ones to qualify for nasal cannula it’s the least invasive and if they are able to tolerate the nasal cannula and keep their saturation of oxygen at 93 or above we are moving in the right direction. Oxygen mask or
a venti-mask which is exactly what it states a mask the difference is the venti-mask works a little different to help improve the oxygen levels of your loved on it and can go to higher levels of oxygen.
6. If your loved one has had dementia or is suffering from sun downing ask if the patient can have a sitter it will help keep them calm. A sitter can also make sure they are not trying to pull out IV’s or pull off their oxygen mask. In many cases some healthcare facilities may offer the family member to be the one to sit with their loved one as long as they are following protocols of the hospital. The key is to keep everyone safe.
7. Many times patients become disorientated due to the lights in the hospital. If you call your loved one seems disorientated find out what you can do to help, be a sitter, offer explanations on what calms them down like music or a family members voice. Use Face Time and Zoom when possible.
8. If you find yourself and your family in that small percentage that is not receiving information back you have the right to intervene for your family member. Know that every hospital has a hospital administrator on call for these type of situations and hopefully you will not have to go this route as you can first start by asking to speak with a nurse supervisor, the house supervisor and many times the social worker can help you and your family to receive the necessary information for the security in knowing your loved one’s status.

As an advocate for patients and their families we have found that every hospital has a different protocol. As an advocate we offer the ability to offer our expertise to the doctors and share information through dialogue. We are here to help support our doctors, nurses, healthcare teams and the patient and their loved ones. It is working with a symphony and we need everyone to be at their best. Be calm when discussing with nurses and doctors, if you receive shocking news ask your primary care physician if they can help be your advocate. Information is key!