Thursday, December 19, 2013

At Least The Bath Is Done

Have you ever noticed that patients' baths seem to be the barometer for how the shift is going?  It doesn't matter what else is going on, if the patient hasn't been bathed yet, it just seems like the day is chaotic and unorganized. 

Patient baths are the marker for what has been or has not been accomplished.  Regardless of what has been done or not been done, patient baths are the indicator of a successful or unsuccessful shift. 

AND, this is equal for night shift and day shift, no matter what the unit's/hospital's policy is about when patients should be bathed.  If we can go to report and say that "at least the bath is done", all is well and we have done our jobs.

Zane Robinson Wolf, in her book Exploring Rituals in Nursing (fascinating book, you really need to read it) says "As nurses lay hands on one to cleanse, comfort, and heal, they accomplish many agendas for patients and themselves.  By virtue of this private work, they implicitly wash away disease and impose order..."

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