PICU Tour at CCMC
Megan was the tour guide for today – she works in the Child and Family Services Dept. She works in the PICU and will be there to help all of us deal with Olivia’s stay in the hospital.
In no particular order:
We covered the security topic. The important thing about the “situation” was that this child was not in the PICU. I felt better after talking to her even though she really had no answers about how / why it happened.
Computer access: There is a computer in the Chapel – which used to be the Family Waiting Area. There are also ones in different lounges on each floor. BUT, I can bring in my dad’s laptop and access the internet from Olivia’s bedside!
Family Rooms: There are 6 parent sleep rooms. They consist of a trundle bed, a small table, tv, vcr and telephone. The parent rooms all share two bathrooms which have full showers and a kitchen area that includes a microwave, fridge and toaster, etc. Nice setup.
You are assigned a room which is yours for your length of stay – you can lock your items in it and store things (i.e. the laptop, my purse). They recommend bringing in your own shampoo, etc.
There is a great craft room on the 8th floor. We are welcome to utilize it with Maddie when she is visiting.
Megan will assist us in preparing Maddie to see Olivia and also to talk to her afterwards. She is willing to allow Christopher to also visit her in the PICU and agreed it would help Maddie to cope if Christopher has seen what she has.
Each patient in the PICU has his / her own room. There is a rocking chair in there. We didn’t get a good look into one but did catch a glance of a child on a ventilator. That was really rough.
After Olivia has surgery, for the first few days she will be in a bed. This is done to allow the nurses easy access to all the tubing and wiring. Once she is off the ventilator, she would then be moved back to a crib.
Most nurses work 12 hour shifts, but there are a few who work 8 hours.
Mostly there is a 1:1 nurse to patient ratio. As Olivia gets stronger, the ratio may be 1:2 nurse to patients.
They are less strict than the NICU about parents having to leave if a procedure is being done, mostly because each child has their own room. The only reason she could see us having to leave is if they leave Olivia’s chest open after surgery and then need to close it up – because they would do that right in her room.
Overall, it was a very good meeting. We feel comfortable with the hospital, but seeing that little boy, it took both of our breath away for a second.