How Hospitals Stay Safe
A lot goes into keeping hospitals safe and secure. A lot more than you might think. Hospitals not only have to watch out for bugs and varments like the average home or company, but they also have to keep up with microscopic germs that can one out of the thousands of people that come to the hospital everyday could potentially bring in without even knowing it. They also have to keep track of who’s all in the hospital, as they don’t want any babies going missing or people coming in with a vengeance who wish to harm the patients. On top of that, a hospital has to follow a very strict order of organization in the midst of all the crazy hustle and bustle that takes place inside of the hospital. This article will go over all of the things hospitals have to do on a daily basis just to keep things at a “normal” level of crazy.
You’d never know it when you go in but even the worst hospitals put a lot into managing the “at least decent” experience you have when you ever find yourself in the less-than-fortunate predicament of being a guest at one of these facilities.
Hospitals must be clean at all times. I mean, really clean. They have to make sure that spills and messes are cleaned up immediately, the sick are diagnosed and treated as soon as possible, viruses are kept contained to as little of an area as they can be, and yes, they even have a special back door for trash day – you can’t be lugging garbage cans through hospital corridors, now can you? Hospitals keep a rather large janitorial staff, especially in some of the larger hospitals. When you have a five story building that takes up a city block, one person can’t really get around to all those messes. Instead, they have about a dozen or so men and women who patrol the halls, cleaning up things as they go (usually at night) and report to incidents as they happen so that the whole building can be kept as clean as possible. That “too clean” smell you notice when you first walk in isn’t an accident, either. It’s called ammonia (no, not pneumonia) and is there to fight off germs on the molecular level. Think of Lysol but 1000 times stronger.
The security of any building is important to it’s overall progress, but even more so in hospitals. Patients, often wounded or sick, must be protected at all costs as they cannot protect themselves. Many stories also arise often about stolen organs and even kidnapped babies from the nursery. To prevent these things, the hospital’s security staff is constantly on guard in order to keep both the patients and the hospital personnel secure. The security is often downplayed in hollywood movies, such as John Q, a movie starring Denzel Washington as a man named John who’s son is going to die unless he can get a heart transplant. The problem is, the insurance company that John and his wife use won’t pay for the surgery that his son needs. John then takes a gun into the hospital and demands that his son gets the transplant. It’s an excellent movie except for the simple fact that things like this do happen in real life sometimes.
In the movie, there was only one guard on duty, who happened to be overweight and sort of an idiot. To prevent these kind of things, hospitals employ large security teams to watch the building very closely and to take action if they become suspicious of anyone.
Another thing that hospitals have to watch out for is power outages. With all of the vast amounts of equipment constantly running 24/7, not only monitoring patients but also keeping a lot of people alive, a power outage could mean lives. That’s why pretty much all hospitals have not only one backup system for power failure but several. If the electricity goes out in a hospital, the backup generator kicks in. If, for some reason, the backup generator stops working, then there’s a backup generator to that generator. These generators usually go on for several “levels” to make sure that in a worst case scenario, patients will be protected at all costs.
Germs, as we all know, are extremely tiny microbes that can get into our bodies without us even knowing about it. With that in mind, hospitals have to put extreme care into dealing with these foreign enemies. Hospitals use all sorts of techniques to battle viruses ranging from the common cold to swine flu. First of all, they make sure the place is kept completely clean on a 24/7 basis. Second of all, they go to great measures in order to sterilize all needles and utensils ranging from surgical instruments to stethoscopes.
They also keep all wounds clean and bandaged so that people with either serious or mild injuries can’t get their wounds infected. To combat the regular people who come in and out of hospitals, carrying germs with them as they go, hospitals simply use air cleaners, bacterial neutralizers, and other such tactics. As for the doctors themselves, they wear surgical masks whenever they feel their health is in danger.
Hospitals must also stay organized as they usually have hundreds, if not thousands, of patients to take care of at all times. New people are constantly coming in to add to the chaos and they must all be checked in an a very professional, organized fashion. Hospitals must also file all of the correct paperwork involving insurance, check in, check out, birth certificates, patient records, discharge papers, and other important documents.
The structure of a hospital is extremely important to the overall safety and progress of the building in question. Everything from the paperwork to eye charts, from doctor notes to annual budgets must be reviewed very carefully, yet rather quickly in order to keep up with everything. So next time you go to the hospital and have to wait in line, try not to be too impatient, as those receptionists are doing the best they can!
Rest assured that when you go to the hospital that everything you need will be taken care of for you. Don’t freak if you have a slight problem with the nurses as maybe they’re just having a bad day. You can’t blame them, after all, as they have loads of patients to keep track of every single day and then on top of that, try to keep up with their own lives. It gets frustrating, as some of you know, to have to deal with sick children, changing old people’s clothes, and put up with annoying coworkers.
Hopefully you can stay away from hospitals for a very long time, as it’s truly no fun to be sick. The reality is, though, that you will probably have to visit a hospital for one thing or another at least one time in your life.
Hopefully this guide has given you some perspective into the life and order of the more advanced hospitals all around the world. Play it safe guys. You only get one body so be sure to treat it with respect. Take care of your body and it will take care of you!