Let no one suffer or die alone.
Let no one suffer or die alone.
Why this petition matters
DEMAND BETTER CARE FOR THOSE WITHOUT A VOICE.
I made this petition to make sure that no one else suffers or dies alone in a hospital. This issue affects our entire country as almost everyone has been personally affected by the rigid visitation policies that have deemed patients and their families powerless.
Through COVID we have begun to strip patients of their rights. Many patients that are intubated, have an altered mental status, or are unable to consent for themselves have had reduced or no visitation due to COVID 19. These are policies or guidelines set by the hospitals. What has been forgotten are the patient’s rights. Patients who are unable to advocate for themselves deserve to have an advocate at their bedside at all times. This person is not only there to support the patient, but to ensure that the patients wishes are upheld and that the patient’s “Bill of Rights” are adhered to by all involved in their care.
As a nurse, I have seen countless families separated due to the current state of the country. Healthcare staff see intubated patients in bed alone daily. We have forgotten the power of human touch, interaction, and support.
I experienced this first hand as my family and I fought to be at my dying brothers beside. He was intubated in the ICU and one person was allowed in for 4 hours total each day. These were critical days to see if he would wake up. Days where family interaction could make a difference. After a false positive COVID test, Matt was held in isolation for 6 days. His own doctor told our family he didn’t think the test was correct. However, we were immediately told we could no longer see him. After 3 negative tests and a negative antibody test, Matt’s healthcare team asked for a family meeting. Our family was asked to make life altering decisions for Matt.
After refusing to make decisions and advocating to be at his bedside, we were finally allowed to see him again. Those six days seemed life changing as the minuscule progress Matt had previously made was gone and he seemed lifeless. Just after being allowed back in the room, our family was again confronted with the decisions to make for Matt. Transfer to long term care where Matt would be attached to machines to perform his every function or withdrawal his life saving care.
Since Matt’s passing, our family has been tortured by the loss of those six days and the question “could it have made a difference?”. We wouldn’t wish those thoughts on anyone, however there are thousands if not millions of families in the same predicament. The rules made by healthcare systems have been ever changing as we face a pandemic that brings constant unknowns and changes. However one thing remains the same, human touch matters, family support matters, a mom holding her baby matters, and families receiving closure matters. Hospital guidelines are fluid, ever changing, and NOT evidence based. They are stripping patients of their rights.
I propose, that regardless of isolation status, any minor or patient unable to provide consent for themselves be allowed one person at their bedside at all times. I propose that not one more patient spend time alone while they fight for their life.