Monday, February 27, 2017

Celebrating 100 Years

Guest Blogger: Kimberly L. Cockey, Quality and Safety Research, WWTK Specialist, MedStar Franklin Square Hospital

Every day as the We Want to Know (WWTK) Specialist at Franklin Square, I have the privilege of speaking to our many diverse patients and their families. WWTK is an innovative program that gives our patients and families a voice to express concerns about their care. The WWTK program allows us the great opportunity to address patient concerns and affect change for a positive patient experience in real time.

I want to share a story that came from a recent WWTK interview. It is one of those stories that highlights what is special about MedStar and reminds me of why I love my job…

I was having a typical day, going from room to room, asking patients how they felt about their care. In one room, I peeked in past the curtain and asked permission to enter. I received a polite invitation from small voice in the recliner across the room. I introduced myself and the WWTK program and began asking my usual questions. Ms. Green was happy with her care and reported that her care team was doing a great job. What she was really concerned about, though, was whether or not she was going to be discharged by Friday. “You see,” she said, “Friday is my 100th birthday, and I must be out of here by then because I have plans to celebrate.” She was very excited as she filled me in on all her celebratory plans and proudly showed off a rather large birthday card that was signed by everyone at her church.

At the end of the day, I documented my interview with Ms. Green (as I do with all my interviews each day) in an email to unit and hospital leadership. Based on a single sentence about Ms. Green’s birthday in my email, Franklin Square rallied to celebrate Ms. Green. Hospital leadership requested a cake, Food and Nutrition Services ordered it, and leaders and staff came together to present her with the cake and sing her “Happy Birthday” in our own little celebration. Ms. Green received well wishes from all over the hospital all day long. Both she and her daughter were surprised and touched by the gesture. And I am happy to report that Ms. Green was discharged in time to make it to her evening festivities.

Her family shared with us the following message: "Thank you for making her 100th birthday special...and for getting her transferred and settled for the family celebration. Also for the treatment and care she recieved during her stay with you."  The Green Family

We Want To Know is funded by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (Grant #1R18HS022757:K.M. Mazor PI). The project is a partnership between MedStar Health, MedStar Health Research Institute, and Investigators from the University of Massachusetts Medical School and the University of Washington.

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