Patient Safety Awareness Week: We Are All Patients

~ Diane Linn RN MSN OCN, SEARHC

It’s Patient Safety Awareness Week.  A time to focus on all the many things we need to do every day to keep patients safe.  I am a Registered Nurse, but sometimes I am also a patient.

Since each of us tends to our personal healthcare, we are all patients – even Registered Nurses.  When I have my blood drawn in the lab, I appreciate everything that is done for my safety.  For example, on the most basic level, the lab tech washes his or her hands and wears gloves for their safety and mine. Checking my two patient identifiers to ensure that my blood is labeled properly, so the results show up correctly on my chart is another safety measure taken.  As I leave the lab, I notice the floor is being mopped creating a clean environment for my safety and the safety of other patients.  There is yellow signage warning me of the wet floor, also keeping me safe.  The environmental services employee mops one side of the hall at a time, so there is a dry floor for me safely pass.  As I leave the hospital, I notice that the walkways are shoveled and someone had tossed out some salt and sand for good measure. The parking lot is also well-lit so that I can see my way to the car.

These things are good reminders that we are all patients, and we all share the responsibility for patient safety.

Happy Patient Safety Awareness Week

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