Disclaimer: This post is my observation on my experience at a Philippine Government Hospital. I don’t intend to make any fuss on the health care agency of the Philippines. I just wanted to share what I have experience in an honest to goodness reality. After all, this blog is all about my love, fashion and life experiences and adventure.

“As a nurse, I am always called to render my service to anyone, especially to my family.”

Filipino NurseLast March 16, 2013, while working on my post about the casual weekend and PBA game, we received a call from my cousin informing us that her mother will be going to the hospital. She had attacks of chest pain the whole Saturday, and the pain worsened by 6pm. Here is my Nurse’s documentation of the event:


March 16, 2013

7:00pm Received a call via mobile phone from cousin, instructing me to fetch an ambulance from the Municipal Hall’s emergency response office for her mother, who was having recurrent attacks of chest pain.

7:10pm Arrived at Municipal Hall’s emergency response office. Informed Nurse on Duty about the situation.

7:30pm Fetched my aunt at their house.

Nurses Chart8:00pm Admitted at the hospital emergency area. Assessed by a Filipino nurse on duty. Medical history taken by the same Nurse on duty.

(Her assessment and history taking was not thorough, which made me to wonder what did she do when her clinical instructors are teaching Nursing Care Management 100. Is she doing the right thing? Isn’t it necessary to take a thorough assessment and history of clients once a patient/client is admitted? A nurse must be equipped with a detailed assessment and history of clients so whenever the doctor is in, it is not hard for the doctor to determine the cause of admission.)

ECG taken by the other Nurse on duty.

(She didn’t checked the equipment properly so she had to install another sheet of ECG paper. If she did the right thing before pressing the device’s button, she saved time and pieces of paper. This again made my eyebrows to fly with my bangs.)

Doctor arrived, checked and diagnosed my aunt.

(Yes, it is a government hospital, which only has a couple of doctors serving for 300 hundred patients. But isn’t it an emergency situation? She arrived almost 30minutes after we entered the emergency area. Chest pain is a top priority in Nursing and Medical Triage. What if within that 30minutes, the pain went beyond the pain scale? Time is essential in emergency situation and every Nurse and Doctors knows that. I don’t know why those people sat, discussed dinner and stuffs while their clients was having chest pains and apnea.)

IVF and Oxygen support hooked to my aunts left upper extremity and nasal nares respectively.

(With the near meeting of eyebrows, the nurse hooked these things unto my aunt. Was she pissed by her work or profession? Is TLC only masked by words and money?)

8:30pm Available medicine bought and taken accordingly except for ‘VERAPAMIL’. Replacement for ‘starter kit’ (IFV equipments) given.

(This is a Philippine government hospital, and we bought for the replacement of starter kit and went a longer distance to search of the required medication. Isn’t it stated in President Nonoy Aquino’s State of the Nation address that health care and medication is his top priority? Where did the free medication go? What happened to the medications and medical equipments bought from the healthcare fund? Are they hidden in someone’s pocket?)

9:00pm Brought and endorsed to Female ward via stretcher by Nurse on Duty.

(As we entered the room, three students from a nursing school were busy doing their not-so-nursing stuff. One of them was touching and typing something in a mobile phone, the other was sitting and looking bored. And the last one was standing while scribbling on her mini notebook. All of these students wore heavy make-up with pink and red lipsticks and exudes girly fragrance while talking noisily in front of their clients. Aren’t they students? Wearing make-up is appropriate for nursing students, and is even required in some nursing schools. But heavy ones  are a no-no. Only light facial embellishment is necessary to keep student nurses look fresh, and not overwhelming for their clients. Another thing is their arid perfumes. Don’t they realize that strong fragrance aggravates client’s condition? Some clients has asthma or allergies. Don’t they noticed they were rummaging the rest and sleep pattern of the clients? It’s 9pm and its bedtime, for Nightingale’s sake.

Moreover, there was no available pillows and linens for clients. A client’s family is required to bring them once admitted. Because we didn’t bring any, I had to ask and borrow a linen from the Nurse’s station. One staff their was kind enough to lend one. I made it as my aunt’s pillow, while sending SMS to my sister and cousins, who went to the city to buy that VERAPAMIL drug, to get a couple of pillows and linens in our house. So, this is reality. Even pillows and linens are not available.)

9:45pm 2 tablets of Verapamil given to the Nurse’s Station. Noticed that IVF is not flowing according to desired rate.

(Putting and checking if the IVF is flowing accordingly is a must for every nurses. Any receiving nurses must do this one. But on our case there was none. So I had to check and regulate it. Yes, it’s not my job, but who else would do? Are the students allowed or have known how to regulate IVF? Will I go to the station and asked no one? Or will I wait for half an hour or more? No way. I did the honors.)

10pm Fixed the bedside and left instructions to my cousin about his mother’s condition and about the reality of being in a government hospital. He should be observant, I told him. No bathroom privileges since she’s in a complete bed rest (CBR). 

10:30pm Signed off. Went home and continued working on my post about the Philippine Basketball Association live tour.

March 17, 2013

8:00am Reported as reliever for my cousin. Brought breakfast, comprised of Milkfish Soup.

8:30am Received call from other Aunt, working as a nurse in Canada.

(She asked why D5W was hooked instead of a port, since the diagnosis is mild Myocardial Infarction. I simply told her ‘it’s the Philippines’. I even informed her about a funny situation about the ‘VERAPAMIL’.)

9:00am Checked patency of IVF.

(Again the IVF was not flowing according to its desired rate. I informed the nurse volunteer, but after how many minutes, I received no attention or response. Was she super busy? I guess she was. She’s there sitting, wasting her pen’s ink on a number of paper sheets. And so, just like the other night, I do the honors to regulate the IVF.)

10am Accompanied my Aunt to X-ray room to have her chest X-ray.

(While walking with my aunt, who was pushed on a wheelchair, I told the attendant that the hospital should have wheelchairs that allows IVF to be hanged. This way, the client’s folks will not be asked to raise their upper extremities. And the poor attendant just smiled at my notion. When outside the X-ray area, we were made to wait for a little bit for the X-ray man.  And as we entered, the classic X-ray machine welcome us. It was purchased maybe years before I was born, but in all fairness it is still functional.)

10:30am Inquired about the Urine Specimen bottle seen on my aunt’s bedside table.

(The urine specimen was due 8am, and its 10:30am. I wonder why nurses at the station didn’t follow-up the availability of it for the last couple of hours. They have given instructions to my aunt and my cousin but they too forgot it.

Going back the room, I overheard these nurses talking or much more like discussing the latest local showbiz news. Are they paid or hired to talk entertainment buzz while on duty?)

11:30am Lunch served by  Nutrition and Dietitian department.

12:00nn Vital Signs taken by Nurse Attendant. Nurse on duty gave medicines.

(While the nurse attendant was checking and getting the vital signs, I asked him about the BP and heart rate of my aunt. But, I’m so lucky I got ignored. Oh, well.

The nurse giving the medicines to the clients was pissed of the room temperature that she blurted it in front of her clients. Isn’t it part of your Nightingale’s pledge? A determined nurse who renders the service of love to clients or patients never whines.)

1:00pm Accompanied my Aunt to the ECG room.

(The same situation with the X-ray area was realized at this moment.)

2:00pm Half bath given to my aunt by me.

(As Nightingale said, ‘environment is a factor to a client’s cure and recovery’. But at this point it is not. The comfort room was bacteria-full with no basin, no doorknob, and no supportive device or rails for elderlies or clients. The toilet bowl sucks since it is also as sick as the clients. The staff cleaned it once in while but it isn’t enough. Infection and other bacterial-borne illness can be acquired with this place.)

2:30pm Left my aunt asleep and undisturbed.

(I went at our house for awhile to bring back the soiled linens and clothes. I stayed for 15minutes to get towels, and undergarments for my aunt. With my aunt’s daughter, I went back to the hospital, with a plastic of oranges and apples.)

3:00pm Offered snacks to my aunt.

(My cousin and I peeled the oranges and offered it my aunt. We then had a discussion on some family and college education matters. Then a nurse approach us and gave drug prescriptions.)

4:00 Bought medicine to pharmacy. VERAPAMIL and ATORVASTATIN were not available at the hospital pharmacy.

(I went back to the nurse’s station to ask for another copy of prescription regarding these medications. The nurse on duty told me that these medications were prescribed only once a day. And so I asked the nurse on duty, to give a prescription that will require me to buy 5 VERAPAMIL and 5 ATORVASTATIN.  I then rushed to the other town since a major pharmacy is located there. Thankfully these medications were available at the said establishment. If they weren’t I had to go to the city, just to have them. Upon my arrival at the hospital, I gave to the volunteer nurse, who was my batchmate in High School, the medications.)

5:00pm Vital signs checked by a student.

(The same set of students from the nursing school were again on duty. They’re still clad with heavy make-up and ‘acrid’ perfumes. The assigned student to my aunt checked the vital signs and the patency of the IVF. She asked me when was the IVF was hooked. I kindly told her that it was attached upon admission last night. Didn’t she document it last night? Or is she that beautiful not to mind her task? Now I am seeing an example of Mrs. Cynthia Villar’s ‘Room Nurses’.)

6:00pm Sign off and endorsed my aunt to my cousin and sister.

Signed: EJE, R.N.

Working with this Nurse’s documentation made the Nurse in me to boil in so much wonder. It aggravates me to put changes in the system,.  It brought a certain truth that Nursing in reality is far from what is found in the written standards. Nursing in real world is what you expect it to be. You should face that nurses’ work vary according to their attitude, skills, and knowledge. And most importantly, not all Filipino nurses live with an excellent work ethics.

Filipino NurseThe way Nurses works is more than just a career. It is even beyond the walls of nursing profession. Nursing is a passion. And every true nurse knows it. When one does not have the passion to render the Nightingale’s pledge to service and love, he/she is not worth to be called a nurse. Being a nurse is not an easy task where you can sit down while discussing the latest showbiz news about Britney Spears or Justin Timberlake. It is not a career which anyone could wear a uniform with a cap. It is not a job where socialites can debunk maliciously and provocatively. There are a number of reason why being a nurse is more than a career and a profession. You may hate nursing for a gazillion reasons, but a true nurse who sees it as a passion will love its essence.

With this post, I am just hoping that some of the Filipino nurse will live the Nightingale’s pledge and apply them accordingly in reality.  Don’t mock yourself with ‘classic and wrongful nursing care plans’. Apply what you know is right and proper. Don’t make Mrs. Cynthia Villar laugh even more. Be the pride of your self, your family, your school, and your country.


PS: I don’t own copyrights of these images so I properly made a link to the rightful owners.

Love. Fashion. Life


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