Patient Advocate?.. examples?

  1. What are some common patient advocacy examples.. not something like "I saved patient by writing to my congressman to change the law and now patient has low-cost cancer treatment"... I would like an example of something simple that is done everyday. I wonder ... Is going through your assessment and then finding out that they have pain and then you go and give them a pain medication.. does that count??.. probably not lol.. Anyone have some examples I could really use them
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    Joined: Aug '11; Posts: 52; Likes: 4


  3. by   Double-Helix
    The example you provided would not be considered advocacy. That is an intervention. You realize the patient has pain, you have an order for pain medicine, you give the medicine. Advocacy means that you are the voice for the patient- you speak to someone on their behalf to help meet their needs.

    Do you have an assignment to come up with examples of patient advocacy? If so, I'd challenge you to come up with your own senarios. But I'll give you some tips to help you get started.

    Advocacy is when your patient has a need and you, as the nurse, speak up for them to help them get their needs met. For specific situations, think about the following:

    • You patient just had surgery. You give her pain medicine, but an hour later she is still in a lot of pain. The order says she can't have another dose for three more hours. What do you do
    • Your patient is a vegetarian but receives meat on her dinner tray. What do you do?
    • Your patient is Muslim and it's very important to him that he pray at certain times every day. However, the patient has a procedure off the unit scheduled during prayer time the next day. What do you do?
    • A new mother is critically ill following a hemorrhage after birth. She is in the ICU and desperately wants to see her baby in case she dies. But the hospital does not allow infants into the ICU and the mother can't be moved. What do you do?
    • A patient is about to be discharged with several new prescriptions. Before you complete the discharge, the patient confides that she is homeless and cannot afford to take the medications to get better. What do you do?
    All of the above situations provide an opportunity for you to advocate for your patient. How would you effectively advocate for your patient's needs in the above situations? What other situations can you come up with?
  4. by   Heogog53
    in the or, i speak for the patient. by reminding doctors that she is allergic to x medications, i am advocating for my patient. if my patient has questions prior to going back to the or, we don't go until the patient feels comfortable with all the answers. when a patient in pre-op has a giant support system, part of what i do is advocate for them and their needs as well as the patient.
    it's not "business as usual" per se, but explaining or translating jargon to both patient and critical family members is advocacy. making certain that a patient, once admitted to the health care industrial complex conveyor belt, with explanations in more jargon, explaining (in an academic center) who all these people are and why are they discussing all this goobldegook. it's is advocacy to explain to a patient and/or families exactly what each lab, test, procedure and surgery are done for, and also explaining that going through with x,y,z tests are over-ordering and that the patient has the right to refuse procedures, tests, labs, surgery until the patient understands the purpose of everything that is to happen

    one last, but increasingly important aspect of nursing is using applied anthropology with our increasing number of immigrants whose customs are so entirely different from the way most americans live.

    simple, true story; i was checking in a sikh gentleman for surgery. he'd come from the floor wearing in turban, as it is essential for a true sikh man not to cut his hair, as one part of honoring his religious beleifs. he couldn't go to the or with his turban on. we discussed it, with the outcome required giving him a box of puffy blue hats, then pulling the curtain shut, so that he would not be exposed by anyone accidentally. he ended up using about 12 hats to make sure that his head was appropriately covered according to his religion. oddly, most nurses have been doing this partially as ojt. now it has a a formal name; culturally centered care, a brand new idea(?).

    these are examples of patient advocacy. respecting not only what the patient requires, but ensuring that both little and large issues are taken care of to decrease stress, anxiety, being culturally and ethically sensitive.
  5. by   gabby112
    These ideas are great
    I will challenge myself to develop those ideas, Thank you