Longwoods Blog

Patient Safety

What patients and families can do to enhance safety.

Be Involved in Your Health Care:

  • Provide an accurant and complete health history to the health care team.
  • Participate in all decisions about your treatment.
  • Use your correct legal name when identifying yourself at registration or admission.

What you should know?

You should understand as much as possible about:

  • Your medical problems/diagnosis.
  • Treatments and procedures being done in hospital.
  • How you should prepare for treatment.
  • Any medicines you are taking.

Preventing Falls:

  • Follow directions about getting out of bed and walking.
  • If you are not able to get out bed make sure your personal items are in your reach.
  • Use your call bell if you need help.
  • If you need to get up but feel weak, dizzy or lightheaded, use your call bell to ask for help.
  • Side rails are put up for your safety. Do not try to climb over them or around them.
  • When you are getting out of bed, rise slowly and sit at the side of the bed before standing. Dangle your legs before you stand. Stand up slowly.
  • If you use a cane or walker, keep it within your reach.
  • If you are in the bathroom and need assistance or become weak, use the call bell on the bathroom wall.
  • Wear non-slip footwear.
  • If you usually wear glasses or a hearing aid, be sure to wear them when you are walking.


  • Have a health care provider explain your discharge plan.
  • Discharge is at 10:00 am.
  • Have a ride home arranged.
  • Make sure you have necessary help, equipment, medication and that you know when your follow up appointment is.

Medication Safety:

  • Bring a list of your medications; prescription and over-the-counter and non-prescription
  • medications, vitamins, herbal supplements, etc.
  • Tell the doctor or nurse if you have ever had an allergic or bad reaction to any medicine or food.
  • Do not take any medications or herbal supplements from home without first asking your doctor or nurse.
  • Do not let anyone give you medications without asking your name and birth date or checking your hospital ID band first.
  • Tell your doctor or nurse about anything that worries you about your medications.  For your safe identification, a photograph may be taken and kept on your file.

Ask Questions:

  • Ask if you have questions or concerns about your care.
  • Plan the questions you want to ask and write them down if you can.
  • If you do not understand the answers you get the first time, it is fine to ask again. You can say “I’m not sure I understand what you said, can you explain that to me again?”
  • Ask a trusted family member or friend to ask questions for you if necessary and designate someone to be your advocate (spokesperson) during your hospital stay.
  • You may also contact Pastoral Care (Local 61474) or Social Work (Local 63714) for assistance.
  • If you need an interpreter, please let us know so we have time to arrange it.

General Safety:

  • Washing your hands is the most important thing you can do to fight germs.
  • Have your visitors wash their hands before coming in contact with you.
  • Feel free to ask staff if they have washed their hands.
  • Ask visitors who have an infection or a cold not to visit you.
  • Health care members who handle your blood and other body fluids should wear gloves.

From The web site of St. Joseph’s General Hospital – Comox Valley


This entry was posted on Monday, March 10th, 2014 at 5:48 pm and is filed under Publisher's Page.