Keeping You Safe & Involved in Your Care

STAY SAFE & SPEAK UP

Patients at Boca Regional are encouraged to SPEAK UP to help ensure the quality of their care. The Joint Commission, an organization that provides accreditation services for hospitals, sponsors this informational program designed to help patients be more informed about their care.

S :Speak up if you have questions or concerns. If you still do not understand, ask again. It is your body and you have a right to know.
P :Pay attention to the care you get. Always make sure you are getting the right treatments and medicines by the right health-care professionals. Do not assume anything.
E :Educate yourself about your illness. Learn about the medical tests you get, and your treatment plan.
A :Ask a trusted family member or friend to be your advocate (advisor or supporter).
K :Know what medicines you take and why you take them. Medicine errors are the most common healthcare mistakes.
U :Use a hospital, clinic, surgery center or other type of health-care organization that is carefully reviewed for quality of care by outside organizations. For example, The Joint Commission visits hospitals to see if they are meeting The Joint Commission’s quality standards.
P :Participate in all decisions about your treatment. You are the center of the healthcare team.


Research shows that patients who take part in decisions about their own healthcare are more likely to get better faster.

PATIENT IDENTIFICATION

Before administering medications, providing transportation or performing procedures and treatments, we will validate your name and other information such as your date of birth or Hospital account number listed on your identification band. You will be asked this information repeatedly throughout your stay. We understand that this may be repetitive; however, this verification process is a critical component of our patient safety program and ensures the right care is provided to the right patient at the right time.

MANAGING YOUR MEDICATIONS

On admission: You will be asked about the medications you are taking at home. Please bring a list of your medications, the strength and frequency. This list should include all prescriptions, samples, over-the-counter items, nutraceuticals, vitamins, herbal remedies and vaccines. Your physician uses this list to determine which medications should be continued, changed or stopped during your hospitalization and to evaluate for potential interactions.

During your stay: Your doctor may prescribe new medications for you. Be sure that you understand exactly what they are and why they are being prescribed. For your safety, you are not permitted to take your own medication.

At discharge: The final medication reconciliation is completed by the physician. You will be provided with a list of your medications that should be stopped and those that should be continued when you are at home. It is important that you manage your medication information by giving a list to your primary physician, updating the list frequently and carrying your medication information with you at all times in case of emergency.

RAPID REPONSE TEAM

Boca Raton Regional Hospital is dedicated to making our facility the safest place for our patients and families. Changes in conditions can happen any time a patient is in the hospital. This includes just after surgery, during medical tests or when a patient is recovering from an illness.

The purpose of Rapid Response Teams is to get help before there is a medical emergency. As a patient or family member, we consider you part of the Boca Regional healthcare team. If you ever feel your loved one is in distress, such as a change in level of alertness, new confusion, agitation or changes in breathing, please contact your nurse immediately! If your nurse is not immediately available, do not wait! Call our Rapid Response Team by dialing 5555 from any Hospital phone.

PREVENTING FALLS

Patients of all ages are at risk for falls. Common reasons for falls in the Hospital include weakness, dizziness, drops in blood pressure and being unfamiliar with your new surroundings. Follow these guidelines during your Hospital stay to help keep you safe:
  • Encourage family members and/or your support person to remain with you as much as possible
  • Ask if you are taking medications that make you more susceptible to falls because of the side effects of dizziness or drops in blood pressure
  • Always ask for assistance before getting out of bed or when using the bathroom or bedside commode
  • Wear non-skid socks or slippers; non-skid socks are available from your nurse
  • Keep frequently used items such as the nurse call button, telephone, tissue and glasses within reach

PREVENTING AND TREATING PRESSURE ULCERS

A “pressure ulcer” is injury to the skin and underlying tissues. They are also called “bed sores” and “decubitus.” Pressure ulcers are caused by:
  • Prolonged pressure causes changes to the skin and underlying tissues
  • Pressure cuts off the blood supply that brings oxygen and nutrients to the tissues
  • Sliding down in a bed or chair can also stretch and close blood vessels
  • Pressure that closes the blood vessels causes tissues to die and a pressure ulcer to form
Pressure ulcers are found most often on body parts that have the most pressure when you are lying or sitting, or on the heels. They can start out looking like an area of redness or a different color than normal skin and may become a scab or a wound. You can be at risk for developing a pressure ulcer when you are acutely ill, are unable to change position in bed or in a chair, have wetness from loss of bladder or bowel control, not eating or drinking enough and being of advanced age. These are steps you can take to prevent and treat pressure ulcers:
  • Allow your nurse to inspect your skin
  • Eat a healthy, balanced diet and drink enough fluids
  • Protect your skin from pressure by changing your position in bed at least every two hours, shift your weight in a chair at least every 15 minutes and avoid sliding or dragging in and out of the bed or chair
  • Protect your skin from moisture by keeping it clean and dry
  • If you have leaking urine or stool, use barrier creams to protect your skin, use absorbent pads while in bed and use briefs while out of bed

PAIN MANAGEMENT

Boca Raton Regional Hospital’s healthcare team cares about your comfort and your well-being. We recognize that each person will experience pain differently. As part of your individualized plan for pain management, we will regularly assess your pain by asking various questions such as the location and description of your pain, as well as what makes the pain feel better or worse. We will ask you to tell us what an acceptable level of pain is for you. Understanding that there are many ways to alleviate pain, we will tailor your pain management accordingly. We ask that you inform your nurse during early signs of pain so that we can intervene as soon as possible to keep you comfortable. Let your doctor or nurse know if you experience any unwanted effects from the pain medications.

PREVENTING INFECTIONS

Hand hygiene is the key to preventing infection. Our staff will cleanse their hands before and after direct contact with you. This may be done with soap and water or they may choose to use the antiseptic foam available in each room. If you have not seen your caregiver clean his or her hands, we encourage you to remind them. Hand hygiene is also important for your friends, family and yourself.

Alchohol-based hand cleaners are as effective as soap and water in killing germs. To use, apply the cleaner to the palm of your hand and rub your hands together. Keep rubbing over all the surfaces of your fingers and hands until they are dry. When washing your hands with soap and warm water, do so for 15 to 20 seconds (or the same amount of time that it takes to sing the “Happy Birthday” song twice).

Patients may require the use of an indwelling urinary or intravenous catheter or undergo surgery during their Hospital stay. A urinary catheter is a thin tube placed in the bladder to drain urine. Boca Regional takes every precaution to prevent infections associated with these devices and procedures. To prevent an infection of the urinary tract, the doctors and nurses will:
  • Insert catheters only when medically necessary and remove them as soon as possible
  • Clean their hands with soap and water or an alcohol hand rub before and after touching the catheter
  • Keep the drainage bag below the level of your bladder at all times
  • Keep the catheter from pulling by securing it to your leg
Your role in preventing urinary infections includes:
  • Not pulling, tugging, twisting or kinking the catheter tubing
  • Asking the doctor and nurse every day if you still need the catheter
  • Reminding the doctor and nurse to clean their hands before touching you or your catheter if you did not see them do so
A central line or catheter is a tube that is placed in a large vein, usually the neck, chest or arm. To prevent an infection of the bloodstream, the doctors and nurses will:
  • Choose the best location for safety and lower risk of infection
  • Clean their hands with soap and water or an alcohol hand rub before inserting the catheter
  • Place a sterile sheet over you and wear a mask, cap, sterile gown and gloves when inserting the catheter
  • Cleanse your skin with an antiseptic cleanser before inserting the catheter
  • Clean their hands and catheter port before giving medications
  • Decide if the catheter is still necessary on a daily basis
Your role in preventing bloodstream infections includes:
  • Telling the doctor or nurse immediately if the bandage comes off or becomes wet or soiled
  • Informing the doctor or nurse if the area around the catheter becomes sore or reddened
  • Reminding the doctor and nurse to clean their hands before touching you or your catheter if you did not see them do so
There are steps to prevent infections before, during and after surgery. To prevent a surgical site infection, the doctors and nurses will:
  • Clean their hands with soap and water or an alcohol hand rub before and after caring for you
  • Remove hair from the incision site, if necessary, with electric clippers – not razors – prior to surgery
  • Clean their hands and arms with an antiseptic agent just before your surgery
  • Wear special hair covers, masks, gowns and gloves during surgery
  • Administer antibiotics, if indicated, before your surgery begins
  • Clean the your skin with a special antiseptic solution
Your role in preventing surgical site infections includes:
  • Asking friends and family to clean their hands with soap and water or an alcohol hand rub before and after visiting you
  • Not touching the surgical wound or dressing
  • Reminding the doctor and nurse to clean their hands before touching you or your catheter if you did not see them do so


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