I cannot hear you!
This morning I took a senior client to see the Dr at the hospital for an appointment. It
It went well, we found out where to go, we found out why we were there, what the appointment was for and what to do next.
However, as my grandson Jacob says, " it was a bit of a conundrum eh Nana?" Yes it was, why did my lady not know exactly where to go, certainly at 80 years walking all over the hospital was not useful. Why did she not know what she was there for - that might have relieved her angst prior to the appointment and my biggest question ... the professionals there were kind but did not, in my opinion, acknowledge her disability and deal with it appropriately, why?
I have great respect for nurses and doctor so don't get me wrong on this but do they all get training on how to deal with older people, to remove the anxiety and get the best result for that person?
My lady suffers from hearing loss and depends a lot on reading lips. The first registration desk lady after 3 mentions of my clients name looked up and I said..she cannot hear you unless you look at her and speak clearly...her reply? I have to look at my computer to see what it says :( The second registration lady was better and made eye contact and spoke clearly...much better. The third person with head down said I have to check your bracelet, my lady did not hear her and jumped when her wrist was lifted up. At each station I told them of her loss and suggested how to communicate with her.
The Dr. a lovely person I am sure, had an accent and was very busy making notes, very important I agree, asking lots of questions rapid fire.....no answer....why ....my lady couldn't see the Dr's face and the questions came too quickly. I mentioned the hearing loss. Questions continued, about medications, eating, drinking water, pain and my lady said....can you talk louder I can't hear well. Another question about medications with no answer, I said that my lady has a hearing loss and to look at her so she can read lips and perhaps go a little slower.
So a 10 minute appointment that included conversation about surgery, swallowing, eating, pain, a fall, a heart issue, medications and drinking water, well, all I can say is - glad I was there to take notes for my lady and her family and to give reminders, to the staff about what my lady needed from them.
Truly, that could have gone much better for my lady! We had coffee and went over everything and later today her family will have my notes on the appointment. I did appreciate the Dr writing down the name of the condition for me.
As a CPCA®, Certified Professional Consultant on Aging..I understand how the mind changes over time, thought processing is a little slower and not being able to hear adds a complexity to conversation and understanding. Contact me if you want the same CPCA® advantage as me when working with senior clients, in whatever capacity, kindness is easy, understanding may take a bit more.