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Old 03-25-2012, 06:47 AM   #1
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Default Canada's Dirty Hospitals

I knew Canada's hospitals - some of them anyway - were dirty. I had no idea it was this bad. We have an increasing problem with nosocomial infections... 250k per year is what's estimated with 12k people dying. The short video is worth watching. The full half hour show horrified me.

I can vouch for everything stated, both from an inpatient point of view 6 years ago & as a visitor & patient advocate as little as 4 weeks ago. Then, I watched a room get 'turned' from discharge to new admission - in 12 minutes. The first patient had a GI problem; the new admission a serious respiratory condition. If the new admission ended up NOT contracting anything GI, it would be a miracle.

We can & should do a lot better than this:

***Poor hospital cleaning revealed as major problem***


http://www.cbc.ca/news/health/
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Old 03-25-2012, 08:00 AM   #2
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Same here, CS. The "cleaning" is cursory. A wipe here and there, bag up the trash, and move on.
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Old 03-25-2012, 08:07 AM   #3
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I often refer to hospitals as charnel houses & I'm only half kidding. As in so many organizations, when they're looking to 'cut fat' from the budget - the line staff who are most crucial get cut & the admins keep their positions & bonuses.

Correct use of an apropriate number of cleaning staff CUTS costs by leading to fewer infections, faster recoveries & fewer readmissions. This is common sense, as well as time tested.

Added to my: "Someone has to go to hospital" bag - strong disinfectant cleaner, rags & gloves.
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Old 03-25-2012, 02:05 PM   #4
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It all changed here when the cleaning (and food services) were contracted out, and the local union jobs disappeared. Our hospital is now "serviced" by American companies that won the bids. Kind of like our provincial highways are now maintained in the winter by an Australian company. I swear all common sense has died.
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Old 03-25-2012, 10:44 PM   #5
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Last time I was in the hospital the person cleaning my room did a pretty good job. She used disposable shop towels. They are like paper towels but heavier duty, I used them to clean machinery. They sprayed all serfaces with cleaner (I requested no bleach-allergy to it), as she wiped a surface she threw away the towel. For the floor she used a Swiffer type mop that sprayed the floor. After she finished she threw the cover away. I was very surprised because the time I had been in a different hospital they used rags and a mop bucket and dirty water.
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Old 03-26-2012, 12:52 AM   #6
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On another board I post on, if I say anything even remotely negative about Canadian healthcare, hospitals, the government fixing of drug prices, or whatever, I get swarmed by angry Canadians defending their healthcare system. They seem to be extremely sensitive to any criticism of it on that board.
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Old 03-27-2012, 09:19 AM   #7
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Blind defence of any system is counterproductive. Firstly "Canadian health care" per se is not entirely accurate. The only theoretically universal feature is that it's tax payer funded & how exactly it's funded varies. In my province there ARE premiums, if your net income is over $20K per year. The annual premium for a family of four is less than a month's premiums for a couple under a variety of US regimes.

Even within a province, access to various services is far from universal & quality of care also varies widely. It depends to a large extent, on where you live. And increasingly, even areas that offered a rich variety of doctots & services are seeing shortages.

Our problems & issues may vary, compared to the US but make no mistake - they exist in spades!

Followung up on the original story I posted, at least one district is already reacting to the expose aired the other night:

***CBC's 'dirty hospital' report sparks changes***


http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/story/...ital-folo.html
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Old 03-27-2012, 03:15 PM   #8
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When things are quiet (a word never to be spoken on a hospital unit...you are asking for Trouble!) then there is time to clean everything. If you have 5 or 6 people an hour discharged with people waiting for the beds in the ER or via direct admit...people push others to 'go faster' and faster means...do less.

It doesn't help if the hospital has had cut backs and instead of cutting the top 10-20% pay they lay off workers.

Then there are complaints it's dirty. Gee...how could that happen?
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Old 03-27-2012, 04:33 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CanadaSue View Post
Blind defence of any system is counterproductive. Firstly "Canadian health care" per se is not entirely accurate. The only theoretically universal feature is that it's tax payer funded & how exactly it's funded varies. In my province there ARE premiums, if your net income is over $20K per year. The annual premium for a family of four is less than a month's premiums for a couple under a variety of US regimes.]
Even as a Libertarian, I could go with a form of this.

Obviously we have to fund something because we are forced to pay for the consequences. (Which is why I say shovel that birth control OUT the door.)

We should establish a basic floor, and it should be very basic. Like clinics for ongoing healthcare, wards for hospital beds, only generic medicines, etc.

Past the established poverty line mean more premiums but would mean more services.

However, participation in the free program means that we get more control of your medical healthcare. You don't take care of yourself, obese, smoke, don't make yearly appointments, you are penalized.

You should NOT get the same premium medical services if you lay about as someone who works a full times job. (Layabout does not include the truly handicapped, etc.)
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Old 03-27-2012, 04:45 PM   #10
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One of the county hospitals around here had a lot of wounds that would not heal. They took the time to question folks about diet and what they drank and things like where they slept.

Most, after counseling, learned how to eat better, gave up soda, gave up chips, put clean sheets on the couch or bed (yeah, many sleep on a couch or chair to sit more upright due to problems breathing)...and guess what? People not only lost weight but the wounds healed.

At what point does a layabout become handicapped Pote? Someone can have various problems that eventually lead to what we would see as truly handicapped...do we still not give 'em full care cuz they once were 'layabouts' or do we then spend the bucks on them?

See why that won't work?
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Old 03-27-2012, 05:05 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Potemkin View Post
Even as a Libertarian, I could go with a form of this.

Obviously we have to fund something because we are forced to pay for the consequences. (Which is why I say shovel that birth control OUT the door.)

We should establish a basic floor, and it should be very basic. Like clinics for ongoing healthcare, wards for hospital beds, only generic medicines, etc.

Past the established poverty line mean more premiums but would mean more services.

However, participation in the free program means that we get more control of your medical healthcare. You don't take care of yourself, obese, smoke, don't make yearly appointments, you are penalized.

You should NOT get the same premium medical services if you lay about as someone who works a full times job. (Layabout does not include the truly handicapped, etc.)
Of course, the problem is that once you grant the government the power to be a service provider, then a welfare state is inevitable. 'Just a little socialism' never works in the long run.
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Old 03-27-2012, 10:07 PM   #12
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What Ought said. What Potemkin describes is the basic rationale behind Medicaid, a program which has the signal distinction of being both hideously expensive and providing godawful medical care. Of course the patients bear a lot of the blame, but still...
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Old 03-27-2012, 10:42 PM   #13
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I'm curious...and this is sorta off topic but we are wandering into the socialist thing again....would it be better if the things provided for in a socialist form were offset by those receiving being required by the same gov, to do something in return?

You get medicaid but you MUST put in xx hours a year to help a designated gov program?
You get food stamps and MUST put in time to stay qualified?

Instead of giving it away, make them earn it, in a way?

---------- Post added at 07:42 PM ---------- Previous post was at 07:39 PM ----------

Oh and Sue...you live among many who get lots of freebies without working for them...do you think that would help in Canada? Stop the freebies and make folks do some work for them, if they are at all able?
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Old 03-27-2012, 11:46 PM   #14
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I have heard the proposal more than once that those who chose to go onto government assistance would lose the right to vote, and regain that right two years after they stopped receiving benefits. The waiting period is to prevent people from getting government aid, withdrawing from the aid program a week before an election, then going right back on it afterwards.
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Old 03-28-2012, 12:32 AM   #15
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Oddly enough - I'm heading off to the hospital right now. My elderly lady is 'sick' again & her hubby is at his wits end.

Gonna be a long, slow night in emerg. I'll observe...
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Old 03-28-2012, 04:56 PM   #16
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Okay I observed... & oh man, cleaning was found sadly wanting. You notice more when you start looking for it, don't you?

The first thing I noticed entering through emerg was a sign stating: "It's okay to ask staff if they washed their hands." Yeah - good sign. The next one - about the ongoing C. Difficile outbreak? Not so good. I was fighting the urge to dramatically point at things & solemnly intone: "UNCLEAN!"

There was no short of unclean. We were there all night & then some so I made a point of finding & using different bathrooms. Some would have been deemed too nasty for a back alley tavern. Two cleaners were in emerg all night but they don't do cubicles between patients - not properly. The gurneys - cursery wipe of the surface. Everything gets a cursery wipe. All the equipment hanging off the ceiling & back wall - nope. The walls themselves were gross.

At least they have hand sanitizer dispensers wall mounted about every 10 feet. I probably used them all. Upon returning home, clothing went into the wash & I think I used most of the hot water in the building scrubbing down. I still don't feel clean.

Emerg was that rare thing when we came in - dead quiet. Not a soul in the waiting room & I don't think I've ever seen that. But inside the emerg department - lots & lots of nasty infections. Thankfully, they had us down in a corner but my friend was still surrounded by: suspected MRSA case, a baby I swear had pertussis, a patient the meds students were puzzling over until a senior resident came in, examined, then chewed them out royally for leaving a systemic sepsis case in the main ward - lovely.

Everything else was psychiatric & one older gentleman with cancer - his referral was to palliative care.

I hate emerg. Because of referrals like that, I REALLY hate emerg.
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