Blog by Loredana Dicsi – Membership, Internal Communication and Youth Officer
The majority of people stay once or twice in their life in hospital. Persons with disabilities will have this “chance” more then others, certainly some that have disability related illnesses. This year I was there twiceand had a “good experience”. Don’t be surprised I’ll explain it.
Did you happen to experience the following when going to medical appointments or in a stay in the hospital? You were not addressed directly, when moving to the consultation room were left behind because the doctor was running in front and had to say ‘Wait, please slower, or can I hold your hand a piece of your white shirt?” and many strange questions that were for sure not appropriate. These were some of the situation I went through as a functional blind when I went either alone or accompanied by someone. Most of the time I go alone and use assistance from the hospital to get to the door I need to be, and the assistance were always more or less ok. They got some training.
At my first stay in February, I was really surprised to experience that I was always properly addressed like any other person not like a child. Then the personal from volunteer to the professor always introduced themselves when they entered the room and reminded when we met before or if it was a first time I saw them. The first question when I was told at the imergency that I will be hospitalized the doctor asked if he may add to my dossier that I am visually impaired and what I can see. He explained that this helped those working with me afterwords to better address my needs. I agreed and indeed it was a difference. When I had to go to a specific department for a check I was asked if I needed a shoulder a an elbow or arm to hold. When I was brought my food I was asked whether I wanted to be told where is what on the plate and if I needed any help to open the jem butter or anything else.
I have been before in the same hospital and there was always a good wheele and was helped in the best way they could, but this was now something standard, a routine and they were comfortable with. I told one of the nurses that I feel a difference and I found out they were all trained and she was happy to hear that what they did is helpful.
It is very important to feel comfortable, treated with dignity and that you understand what you must do when you are back home for your recovery.
There remains other issues still of course, the systems they have to order your meny and watch t-TV or listen to the radio is a a tutch screen without voice and there is not yet an app, the papers you need to sign for insurance, or the one you are given are still not accessible, but I have all of them explained. So with digitalization I think this will soon be possible to receive them in an e-mail or via an app. My conclusion is that a big step forward is made though things remain to improve. This happened in a university hospital that has many resources. When the regional smaller hospitals will follow this good practice? To be seen, in anycase it is possible and that is the most important.