Patient Safety

Smoking/Tobacco Use

Cigarettes, smoking materials, and smokeless tobacco are not sold within the hospital. Smoking/tobacco use is not allowed anywhere on hospital property, including inside buildings, on lawns, sidewalks, and/or parking lots.

Electrical Appliances

Because some personal electrical appliances interfere with devices used for patient care and safety, only certain personal items may be used. Please notify admissions of all personal electronic devices you have with you.

Fire and Disaster Drills

Fire and disaster drills are conducted periodically to ensure that hospital staff can operate smoothly in the event of such an emergency. Do not be alarmed if you see or hear evidence of a drill; they are performed with your safety in mind.

Medication Administration

All medications you take while you are in the hospital are prescribed by your physician, dispensed by the hospital pharmacy, and are administered by a nurse. Self-administered medication is allowed only under special circumstances and when authorized by your physician.

Valuables

Patients are asked not to bring items of value to the hospital. If you do bring a valuable item, it will be placed in an envelope and deposited in the safe. You will receive a receipt that you must have to retrieve your item(s) from the safe, and a note will be made in your medical chart. Ferrell Hospital cannot assume responsibility for valuables or money kept in patient rooms. Unclaimed items are kept at the nurses’ station.

Help Us Prevent Falls in the Hospital

Accidental falls may occur in the hospital. These accidents are as distressing to the hospital as they are to the patient. Please read this information carefully to learn how you can help prevent a fall.

Reasons you could fall:

  • Tranquilizers, sleeping tablets, pain relievers, blood pressure pills, or diuretics may make you dizzy and/or disoriented.
  • Your illness, enemas, laxatives, long periods without food, or tests your doctor ordered may leave you weak and unsteady.
  • The hospital may seem foreign and unfamiliar to you – especially when you wake up at night.

Please communicate with your nurses and physician as we strive to provide you with a safe environment. Some falls – such as those associated with illness or therapy – cannot be avoided. However, by following the guidelines on this sheet, you, your family and friends can help reduce your risk of falling.

Guidelines for preventing a fall:

1. Ask the nurse for help if you feel dizzy or weak getting out of bed. Remember you are more likely to faint or feel dizzy after sitting or lying for a long time. If you must get up without help, sit up in bed awhile before standing up, rise carefully, and slowly begin to walk.

2. Make sure you wear nonskid slippers whenever you walk in the hospital. Rubber-soled or crepe-soled slippers are recommended.

3. Remain lying or seated while waiting for assistance. Though minutes may seem like hours, please be patient; someone will answer your call as soon as possible.

4. Do not tamper with side rails or safety devices that may be in use. If restraints need adjustment, ask the nurse. Side rails and restraints are reminders to stay in bed and are designed to ensure your safety and protection.

5. Keep all the things you need within easy reach. Glasses, dentures, tissues, etc. should be kept handy (and in proper container) on your bedside table. Tell the nurse if they are not – don’t over reach.

6. Always follow your doctor’s orders and the nurses’ instructions regarding whether you must stay in bed, require assistance to go to the bathroom, etc.

 NOTE: Because hospital staff members cannot remain constantly at a patient’s side, arrangements may be made for a family member or sitter to stay with a patient.

Patient Safety and Restraints

At Ferrell Hospital, we believe all patients have the right to live with dignity and be able to take “the normal risks of life.” We also believe that all patients have the right to be cared for in a safe environment. This can happen without the use of restraints.

Restraint is explained as the “use of physical means to help protect patients from injuring themselves or others.”

The Registered Nurse will screen and monitor all patients upon admission to the hospital and throughout their stay for safety needs.

If a safety need is found, hospital staff will try to meet the need by using one or more of the following methods:

• Inviting family member to stay with the patient

• Diverting the patient’s attention.

• Talking with the patient to reassure them.

• Familiarizing the patient with his/her surroundings.

• Explaining what is happening to reduce the patient’s anxiety.

• Assisting the patient with comfort measures by offering the bathroom, something to eat or drink, exercise, etc.

 In some cases, the patients’ safety needs may only be met by using more limiting measures, such as restraints. An example might include:

• A soft device or mitten may be used to prevent your loved one from pulling out an essential medical device such as IV tubing, foley catheter, and/or drains.

• A belt, vest or other device may be used to provide a safe, secure environment for your loved one and others.

• Restraints are used only if other measures have been tried and have failed, and the benefits of restraint outweigh the risks.

• Restraints will be removed when the patient’s safety is no longer at risk. Staff will continue to try other methods to achieve a restraint-free environment.

• The staff at Ferrell Hospital is skilled in the use of restrains. They are available to answer any questions that you might have.

Never remove any device! Ask the nurse if you have a concern about safety measures or the devices being used.

Instructions to the family regarding restraints:

If a device is removed and you volunteered to stay with your loved one it is very important that you:

• Advise the RN of any significant changes in the patients’ condition.

• Advise the RN if you need to leave the room.

• Know how to use the call light.