Descriptive & Professional Account
The Physical Therapist and other nurses, were trying to indicate a little forcefully how she needs to get up and at least try to move, but repeated communicating the same thing, was angering the lady and she was not willing to participate. Due to an apparent communication gap, she did not even understand what we were willing to convey. Though this situation might appear to be a case of Professional Communication, but I feel facets of Person-centred care is also embedded in this situation.
Reflection & Action
Post complete knee replacement surgery it is important for the patient to try to move her knee and start walking under the supervision of a Physical Therapist, or else delay occurs in recovery and eases the new replacement and facilitates in strengthening of the muscles (Temple, 2006), but I realized that forcing the patient in question, will not lead to any benefit unless we communicate effectively and calmly to her.
I understood that she will not understand the technical complications which might arise, and that is how I decided to first understand the reason for her protest – whether physically and physiologically everything was normal with her. I went to her, smiled and tried to talk about her, her life and attempted to create a bonding. Then I ensured that she was not complaining of any out of the ordinary pain or there is no presence of any other complications. Then I used visual aid, in the form of posters and explained slowly and used English in the simplest form, to explain to her why she should try and what will happen if she does not make an active attempt. It was like explaining to a 5 year old child and I also stressed upon the importance of positive thinking and the strength of her mind. She eventually agreed and started making an effort.
I realized that each and every patient is different, and each of them is hailing from different backgrounds and has their own sets of beliefs, values, philosophy, life goals etc (Maier-Lorentz, 2008). Therefore, applying the same techniques and patient care strategies on to everyone might not lead to the desired outcome. In the process we would face challenges, and we need to modify our care as per the needs and requirements of individual patients (Norris, Currie and Lecko, 2012).
This incident also highlighted the importance of communication in patient care, and how changing simple strategies of communication can give rise to desired outcome (Bramhall, 2014). We, as the primary caregivers have to act as the path through which a patient would achieve complete recovery, hence, it is of critical importance, that we as nurses understand the nuances of individual philosophy and can create changes in the manner in which we practice our patient care. The final outcome that, the patient understood what I told her and trusted me and took attempts to make herself mobile, was extremely encouraging and motivating for me. Finally, the patient achieved full recovery and left the hospital after 7 days of surgery.
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Lucas, B. (2008) ‘Total hip and total knee replacement: preoperative nursing management.’, British journal of nursing (Mark Allen Publishing), 17(21), pp. 1346–51. doi: 10.1056/NEJM199009203231206.
Maier-Lorentz, M. M. (2008) ‘Transcultural nursing: its importance in nursing practice.’, Journal of cultural diversity, 15, pp. 37–43. doi: http://search.proquest.com/docview/219364449?pq-origsite=gscholar.
Norris, B., Currie, L. and Lecko, C. (2012) ‘The importance of applying human factors to nursing practice’, Nursing Standard, 26(32), pp. 36–40. doi: 10.7748/ns2012.04.26.32.36.c9044.
Temple, J. (2006) ‘Care of patients undergoing knee replacement surgery’, Nursing Standard, 20(48), p. 48–60 11p. Available at: http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=rzh&AN=106336253&site=ehost-live.