Not All of Us Have an Aunt Betty February 17th 2016

I don't mean to be brash or insensitive, but we are all going to die.  That's how life works.  So why not prepare for the inevitable?  I'm not talking about assisted suicide, euthanasia or anything like that.  I'm simply referring to "getting your affairs in order."  You know, if you're fortunate to have a life…

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Don’t Quit Before You Start. January 23rd 2016

It's almost February.  New Year's Resolutions may be a distant memory. Research consistently proves that a small percentage of people who make resolutions actually achieve them—something like 10 to 12%–with most having abandoned them by the end of January.  Not exactly a recipe for success. We all have goals.  But often in our work lives, the…

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Take a Seat. Please. January 18th 2016

Last week, I was talking with the wife of a hospitalized patient. Her husband, who has been in three different hospitals since Christmas Eve, had just had surgery and the surgeon came up to his room to speak with her.  She said to me, "He came in the room and sat down on the chair…

“That’s Sick.” November 23rd 2015

This past Saturday night, I was at a family event when my two 21 year old nephews were 'catching up' with each other.  Early in their conversation, of which I was part, one said to the other, "That's sick."  His response, "Definitely."  Meanwhile, "older" Aunt Betty and Aunt Kate, both nurses and both in jeopardy of losing…

Prescription Drug Use on the Rise November 6th 2015

More Americans than ever are taking prescription drugs, a new study finds.  But most of the top 10 drugs are for preventable conditions. 59% of adults used prescription drugs in 2011-2012, up from 51% in 1999-2000. For the study, published Nov. 3rd in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), the researchers used data…

When Did Everyone Get So Young? August 29th 2015

OK, I know I'm getting older and it's been a while since I graduated from nursing school, but when did all the staff nurses (and physicians) get so young?? Over the last few months, I have had many occasions to visit patients in hospitals.  Not just one, but several different facilities in various states. Yes,…

Maybe We Should See a Veterinarian? June 20th 2015

I'm always interested in hearing stories about the healthcare system.  Good and not so good. This past week, a friend shared with me her recent story about interacting with the healthcare system.  And it made me think maybe we should forget medical doctors and sign up with our pet's veterinarian. Each year, Debbie (c'mon, not…

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Health Care Transparency–The Incredible Journey February 27th 2015

Transparency.  Officially defined by Merriam Webster as "the quality that makes something obvious or easy to understand." Transparency in health care.  Might as well (affectionately) refer to it as the Incredible Journey.    There are many efforts going on currently that seek to create price transparency in health care.  Call me crazy but making the pricing of health care 'something…

We Grieve Because We Care. February 6th 2015

Last week, three of our patients died.  Two deaths were not "surprises" as both patients had terminal cancer.  The other patient committed suicide so yes, his death was unexpected for everyone.  As nurses, we know that death is part of life and depending on our nursing careers, we are often well acquainted with losing a…

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Create Your Own Personal Health Record January 21st 2015

Let’s face it. The more doctors you see, the more medical files you have. And the more scattered your medical records are, the higher your risk of drug errors, missed diagnoses, and other potentially dangerous glitches. The solution? Keep a set of your own personal health records at home. It just makes good sense. We…

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