Friday, October 26, 2007

Hospital Clean

The Sunday Scribblings prompt this week is Hospital.
Many things come to mind...The stories of my children being born, our many emergency visits, going to visit my step-dad in the hospital and being told he had passed... yet I choose- how germaphobic I get when visiting a hospital. I don't know why this topic hits me, but it does. I am conscious of germs in most places. The sneezers & coughers who don't cover their mouths. Telephone receivers. The bottom of every purse. Hotel bedspreads and remotes. Those shopping cart handles! I am tempted to wear my disposable hair coloring gloves while food shopping. After I've visited any store, before I reach for my seatbelt, I pump my anti-bacterial gel which I keep in a giant bottle in my car-doors cup holder. ( small one in my purse)
When my kids were little, I would pack up their little healthy lunches and ALWAYS include an individually wrapped handi-nap. (Remember those?) My husband thought they would get beat up at recess for washing up before lunch!
But... Hospitals... oh my! I don't touch Anything in there. I open doors with my shirt sleeve, and push it further with my foot. I use my elbow in ways god never intended us to. ( It's amazing how flexible our elbows are, mine can turn the paper towel dispensers handle! )
It's true what they say... muscle has memory, from my past years of doing kickboxing... I can balance on one foot while I either open or close a toilet seat lid and flush with my foot while in a round house position. (Sometimes quite a challenge in a teeny tiny stall). Those same muscles allow me to squat hovering over the germs for as long as eh eh hem it takes. Of course this beneficial technique is not limited to hospitals, but in hospitals... I stand on my toes first to get even further away from the porcelain de germs.
Okay... So now you aren't guessing anymore.. You are convinced I'm a wacko. It's okay. I'm aware that this all may be viewed as a little bit over the top. It is a fact however, that hospitals have more staff and bacterial infections than anywhere else! Too many times my boys have been in the ER. Broken bones and stitches seem to go hand and hand with boys. Too many times, I've been freaked out by how filthy this place is. Dried blood on my sons hospital bed and on the floor. People vomiting with only a curtain separating us from their airborne viruses. Splatters of Everything imaginable in the bathroom. It is a germaphobes nightmare! I truly think if you aren't sick when you go there, you will be when you leave. I think they should hand out plastic gloves and particle masks at the door.( If everyone wore those I wouldn't look like a nut wearing mine!)
Years ago, weren't hospitals known for cleanliness? Wasn't there even an expression "hospital clean"? I am happy to report my house is not hospital clean. When did this lack of cleanliness in hospitals happen? Probably the same time as HMOs.
There isn't enough time and money to hire enough people to keep hospitals "hospital clean". The last baby I had, it was my husband who had to empty my overflowing garbage bag everyday. Once I did see the janitor he and his big dirty gray mop. I think he was adding More germs to the filthy place. In my opinion, they should have Vats of bleach and have bus loads of janitors in those cdc space suits. Wouldn't you pay a little more for a clean hospital stay? I feel sorry for hospital workers who are exposed to these "super" germs daily. In general, I think our world is dirtier than it was when I was younger. This recent news of the deadly MRSA infectionis proof. ( notice steps 1& 2? How wacko am I? )
When I heard of an outbreak in a long Island school, I immediately told my son to bring home his gym clothes so I could wash them again. ( I know my family thought I was being a nut). The next day I received an email and a call from our district saying ALL kids should bring home their gym clothes and empty lockers. They are disinfecting the schools. ( How wacko am I? ) Many years ago I did substitute duty in the lunch room of an elementary school. After each lunch period I was handed a spray bottle and a few of those brown bathroom paper towels and told to wash down my 2 tables. I asked what was in the spray bottle. Do you know what they were cleaning those filthy germy tables with? WATER. NO Bleach. NO disinfectant. When I questioned this.. The head lunch lady said "The kids don't like the smell of the bleach" How wacko am I? after that I told my boys... If your food falls on the table... pretend it fell on the floor... Throw it away! There too... the same janitor the same dirty pail of water and gray mop. What can we do to make sure these essential institutions clean up their acts? What if we speak up when we think standards are substandard? Let's hear your views scribblers.... Hope a lot of you are wacko too.

* <3 Happy 27th Anniversary Honey <3

21 comments:

Just Jen said...

Wacko over here too! I can so understand the bathroom stall! The hospital germs, the giant bottle of antiseptic in the car. Once I told my husband I'm going to invent bathroom disinfectant travel bags. A little kit that fits in your purse, complete with paper toilet seat cover (should be offered everywhere in my opinion), the antiseptic quick dry soap stuff, wet naps, and disposable gloves. I was even thinking about little disable papercovers for that dreaded lock on the bathroom stall and the door knobs, lights switches, etc...LOL I am very talented and opening and closing things with my feet, elbows, and once I even used the top of my head because I didn't want to put anything I had in my hands down for fear of the germs....but when you gotta go...you gotta go!

Herb Urban said...

I have a phobia of public restrooms. As a child, I would avoid them at all costs, at school or even on long weekend drives. Sadly, they are inescapable in the adult world.

I'm with you on hospitals. All those germs make me paranoid.

kimberley said...

I can't go there. I just can't go there. :) Hospitals are the creepiest places on earth even without the germs -

Way to go with the kick boxing poses turned into practical use!

Remiman said...

Lucy,
I don't think you're wacko! Golly sarge you sound just like my wife. In fact I'm going to print off your post and give it to her to take to work.....She's a public health nurse and she expounds on the same diatribe as you and probably more often. I too am a nurse and she even gives me the lecture at least weekly, ie; Did you wash your hand before you left the OR? Put you uniforms in a bag, don't just leave them on the floor. You wash your own uniforms please, and don't put anything else in with them, thank you. It's not that I'm careless, it's that she is "wacko" like you , and looks for every opportunity to make her points.
Great post Lucy, you are one smart cookie!
rel

UL said...

Add me on, yet another whacko, nice take on the post...thanks for sharing.

paisley said...

i am just the opposite.. i sit on every toilet seat eat off other peoples plates... i just have no fear of germs whatsoever,,, and i am never sick,, so i do believe that in the spirit of the vaccine,, exposure is the key to health... call me crazy if you will!!!!!

Betty C. said...

Spending a month in a hospital definitely demystified and decreepified (I like that word; I think it should be created!)the places for me. Now I just see them as another place: banks, restaurants, schools, hospitals....

tumblewords said...

So sorry. I don't think you're wacko! If you are, nobody stands a chance. :) Actually, I believe that the world IS dirtier than it was - and the reports of people not washing, super bugs and bacterial attacks at school are scary as scary...

Ally Bean said...

Great take on the prompt. You're so right about hospitals being very germy places. I don't think that you're a wacko-- at least on this point. ;-)

Lucy said...

thanks for the support! Wackos Unite!

giggles said...

Put my daughter on the wacko list....she is exactly like you, has been since early childhood. Was I the culprit that made her that way. By changing her often and always making sure she never had a sticky hand or face. I carried cloths in my purse long before antibacterial soap.Her fanaticism has rubbed off on me now I see everything as a germ disaster. But I am not proud obsessive compulsive like her. I too would send little wet paper towels in a baggy with her lunch. Just last week I noticed our local super market has wipes for the shopping cart handles. Which my daughter has never touched without a barrier. This is just the tip of the iceberg. Imagine the buses!! Great post! I think there are way more of you around than you know! Some are closet wackos....Next post Wackos unite!!!

Hugs Sherrie

Jane Poe (aka Deborah) said...

I'm not as vigilant, but recent news articles (esp on MRSA & staph) have me a little freaked out. I agree with you about the hospitals -- why aren't they as clean as they used to be??? Embrace your inner wacko Lucy! xx, JP/deb

gautami tripathy said...

I too am very paranoid about hospitals and public restrooms. It's good to know that are so many others like me out there!

Patois said...

Maybe we're all a little wacko. Then again, we're all still here, aren't we?

Carol said...

I keep clorox wipes in my car to wipe off the grocery cart or open a door. I am crazy. I admit it. If I could walk around with a mask and gloves, I would. I have hand cleanser in my bag and in the car. Add me to the list. I am just waiting for my number to be called at the local mental hospital. There's a waiting list for people like us...

myrtle beached whale said...

Lucy:

My 3 year old granddaughter contracted MRSA a few weeks ago. Luckily they caught it early and she should completely recover. The best they can figure she got it from a public toilet at an amusement park. Started on the back of her thigh.

Sorry about this week's blog. Not my usual.

Joan said...

We've had MRSA outbreaks here in NC in the locker rooms. Scary stuff.

deirdre said...

I'm not a germophobe, but I do think about it more than I used to and wash my hands often. (Not too often, but probably more than enough.)

No, you're not wacko. Definitely not.

Gary said...

I guess on here I must be the wacko one... I avoid all antibiotics and antiseptics, on the basis that a healthy immune system should be able to cope with just about anything.
And the way to get a healthy immune system is exposure to bacteria, both bad and good (good via probiotics).

Haven't had to visit the doctors since 1998...

It might be an idea to look into the facts around bacteria before getting too paranoid about them. Eg

"It is estimated that between 20% and 40% of people in the UK carry MRSA, mostly in the nose or on the skin. So-called community-acquired MRSA (C-MRSA) is usually relatively harmless for the general population, although it can cause boils or other minor infections. However, patients in hospital tend to be older, sicker and weaker than the general population, making them more vulnerable to the bacteria."
http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2006/dec/18/mrsa.qanda

Anonymous said...

I found this site using [url=http://google.com]google.com[/url] And i want to thank you for your work. You have done really very good site. Great work, great site! Thank you!

Sorry for offtopic

Anonymous said...

Who knows where to download XRumer 5.0 Palladium?
Help, please. All recommend this program to effectively advertise on the Internet, this is the best program!