Panama November 2017: Three Favorite Pics

Here are three of my favorite pics from the hospital: the doors through which patients come and go to the dialysis salon, a trash container filled with hazardous waste from inside the salon, and a nurse in white uniform and cap walking down the corridor.

I will have more thoughtful reflections on the five day experience over the next several days, but here’s a quick take. I chose the door pic because the whole time everyone is there waiting in the very long open corridor, all eyes are on this door. Patients come and go, nurses and housekeeping and nephrologists and young doctors-in-training come and go. When your person is done, he or she is wheeled or walked out by a nurse through these doors. She then parks the wheelchair against the wall or sits the person in a chair, gives a quick glance to see if someone is coming, then goes back in. There had better be someone there to collect the person, who might be lightheaded or shaky. There’s no such thing as a hand-off, really. When you’re done, you’re done, and the busy nurses turn around to get ready for the next group.

I’ve been curious about infection control, about which I don’t know very much. The container of hazardous waste just sitting there drew my attention. It’s all in plastic bags so I guess it’s safe enough, but I wonder if you’d see this in a U.S. hospital?

The nurse in uniform and cap is something I haven’t seen in the U.S. in a very long time. I await being corrected by anyone who works in a hospital where nurses still wear caps and uniforms.

Friend Phyllis says that while caps went away in this country, they are still a badge of honor in developing countries. I suspect that’s true here.

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