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All hospitals are not created equal. Specialty and "boutique-type" hospitals are popping up in every sizeable town and the ones that used to be of the "general" variety, also have restructured, added or deleted services and found their niche in the new world of hospital services. To make it a lot more confusing, many free-standing surgery centers, 24 hour emergency centers along with other ancillary service centers are proliferating at a phenomenal rate. As a retired healthcare business development specialist, I can only imagine how hospital systems are scrambling to maintain and position themselves because the leaders with the newest and best equipment and services.
But, as a consumer, how do you know that the hospital you choose is really the correct one for you?
There is an enormous quantity of very clinical (and sometimes confusing) information about any hospital that is licensed to operate in the usa. You can find it all over the internet or just by calling the hospital association for your state and requesting information such as mortality and morbidity statistics (cheery reading) or the way the hospital scored on its latest Joint Commission survey. The Joint Commission is an independent group of experts in every areas of hospital operation, from safety, to bedside care, to the food served in hospitals. Most hospitals voluntarily submit to these often grueling (and surprisingly subjective, not to mention inconsistent) surveys because their ability to accept the majority of the larger insurance carriers requires a certain minimum score to participate.
But, most healthcare consumers want to have a "snapshot" of a hospital, make a quick decision....and expect the best. The following hospital tips have been published by the people who know the hospitals best: hospital professionals, themselves. They are often indicators of the way the hospital operates, overall, and will be a quick and easy way to determine what sort of care you are likely to get.
1. The hospital's appearance can be an important and surprisingly often overlooked indicator of how the hospital functions. Look at the flooring. Will be the carpets worn and dirty? Are the elevators polished and bright or do they look old, dingy and downright grimy? What do the general public restrooms look (and smell) like? Will be the hospital personnel well-dressed in proper uniforms? Is the signage appropriate and readable? Can you stay on course around without assistance? Will be the common areas bright and clean, with healthy plants and comfortable chairs? You may be pretty certain that if a healthcare facility looks bad, the care probably will be, too. (The exception to the rule could possibly be the downtown trauma hospitals in big cities. These often grungy places could possibly be the best places to go should you have suffered some horrendous trauma, such as a gunshot, dismemberment, etc. nha cai hang dau In that case, you'll hardly be noticing your surroundings. But, don't go there to have your baby and expect a lovely environment!).
2. Find out what the hospital is well-known for. This is often difficult as hospitals tend to advertise, just like any business plus they sometimes have quite inflated ideas of what they are (or should be). An example of here is the hospital that advertises itself as "for children" and directs lots of their advertising budget towards convincing the general public that it is. True Children's Hospitals are simply that: for children ONLY. They don't treat adults. They are the only real hospitals who can accurately declare that children are their specialty.
3. How hospitals staff their nursing units says a lot about the level of care you will receive in the event you wind up in one of these. However, this is not information that a lot of hospitals will give out. What you want to learn may be the nurse to patient ratio. A hospital that will staff down will have too many patients being looked after by exhausted and overworked individuals. Before you choose a hospital, take advantage of a visit to an acquaintance or friend who might be an individual there and use your powers of observation. Or, just go out by the nurse's station for awhile. If it looks and appears like chaos and there are a lot of call buttons going off no one answering, this is a red flag.
4. All hospitals usually do not charge the same for same or similar services. Surprise! So, how will you comparison shop between hospitals? One way would be to contact a healthcare facility association for the state and request that information. But, you can also call a few hospitals ahead of time to obtain an estimate on the cost of your surgery or procedure. You will need to give them all the details you can including which kind of insurance you have, the precise condition you have and what the surgery or procedure will undoubtedly be that you are contemplating. You will probably find that you could save several thousand dollars by choosing one hospital over another (assuming your physician/surgeon is licensed, and willing, to execute your surgery there).
5. Have lunch or a snack in the hospital's cafeteria. The same food is served to the patients, so pay attention. Is it fresh and acceptable? If not, you should cross this hospital off your list. (You'd be surprised by the amount of times folks have been made sick by consuming the food in a few hospitals). You should also know that most hospitals, nowadays, farm out their food services to outside companies like the ones who provide food services to large venues, like ballparks and convention centers.
This checklist can offer you with an extremely revealing snapshot of the hospital you are considering without wading through mountains of data. So when it boils down to it, the place you select should be one that you are feeling safe and relatively comfortable in. Should you choose just a little bit of homework before your choosing a hospital, you might find that it pays off ultimately with an improved hospital stay.
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