I have been a nurse now for over fifteen years so I think I know a thing or two about patient care. Much in the same way a mechanic would be able to spot the the work of a someone qualified or a customer service worker could spot great service, I know good care when I see it. On my recent visit to the new Urgent Care clinic in Charleston, I was a patient for the first time in a long while and the care I got was top notch.
It can be a bit strange going from patient care provider to patient and at times it really tests your patience (no pun intended). You will notice that a doctor or nurse has done something that you wouldn’t do and your first instinct is to correct them or do it yourself the right way, but you know that isn’t your place. However the entire time during my visit to the clinic I didn’t see any egregious mistakes or omissions that I thought should have been corrected. In fact, I was pleasantly surprised on more than a few occasions at the level of personal and genuine care I received.
When we talk about patient care it goes much further past the point of just providing a person with the medicine they need to get better. What makes a patient feel safe and cared for is something much deeper than that. Nurses and doctors need to work hard to establish a personal connection with that person and understand their point of view. A doctor who spends a few minutes getting to know his/her patients will have a much easier time diagnosing them and prescribing medication or treatment that can be effective. Every person is different so doctors cannot take the “one size fits all” approach.
During my time at the Urgent Care clinic in Charleston, I was asked a number of personal questions by the doctor to help paint a picture for him. He asked me about my active life, what I did for exercise, how many times a week or month I work out and what sorts of normal aches and pains I encountered on a daily basis. He also inquired about my diet and what kinds of food I intake. All of these questions form an image of my lifestyle in the doctors mind and help to make the patient/doctor connection that much stronger.
Beyond the fact that the doctor knew how to properly interview and diagnose his patients, every other member of staff was exceptionally kind and generous towards me. They didn’t even know I was a practicing nurse until it came up in random conversation so that’s how I know they would provide the same level of care to anyone regardless if you are a nurse or not. They told me that this Urgent Care clinic in Charleston has been there for over three years now and they plan to open up a few more in the area. It’s nice to know you can get quality health care near your house.