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Mt Druitt - St Mary's Standard (East) - - NEWS -

HAV­ING a baby is one of the best times in life, but giv­ing birth can of­ten leave mums a lit­tle worse for wear.

West­mead Hos­pi­tal mid­wives are us­ing a prac­tice that re­duces the chance of sphinc­ter in­juries.

Pelvic Floor Unit di­rec­tor Dr Jenny King set about find­ing why the in­jury was on the in­crease.

Her re­search led her to Fin­land, where the op­po­site was the case.

“We have ed­u­cated our mid­wives on the Finns’ prac­tice, which has seen these birthing in­juries re­duce by 35 per cent over the past 12 months,” Dr King said. WHILE blood trans­fu­sions can be life-sav­ing, clin­i­cians at West­mead Hos­pi­tal have found ways to re­duce the need.

The hos­pi­tal has in­sti­tuted prac­tices to min­imise the pro­ce­dure in its car­diac sur­gi­cal unit.

West­mead Hos­pi­tal per­fu­sion­ist Rona Steel said: “Pro­ce­dures are utilised that do not di­lute pa­tients’ haemoglobin, and min­imise post-op­er­a­tive blood loss. We also get a clot­ting pro­file of the pa­tient.

“In just five months, we have re­duced trans­fu­sions by 46 per cent and the prac­tices are be­ing rolled out across other dis­ci­plines.” PA­TIENTS are the ben­e­fi­cia­ries of a work­place re­design in the Re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion, Aged Care and Stroke Ser­vice at Black­town, Mt Druitt hos­pi­tals. Al­lied Health, which in­cludes speech pathol­ogy, oc­cu­pa­tional ther­apy and phys­io­ther­apy, are crit­i­cal to the re­cov­ery and qual­ity of life of stroke and aged care pa­tients.

As our pop­u­la­tion ages the wait­ing lists for al­lied health ser­vices grows.

Claire Ibrahim, se­nior oc­cu­pa­tional ther­a­pist at Black­town, Mt Druitt hos­pi­tals re­viewed the al­lied health as­sis­tant work­force to dis­cover they could do much more. KEEP­ING a new­born baby warm is para­mount, but when the in­fant ar­rives pre­ma­turely it be­comes crit­i­cal.

Ann-Maree Pader­nia, clin­i­cal nurse ed­u­ca­tor in West­mead Hos­pi­tal’s Neona­tal In­ten­sive Care Unit (NICU), has de­vised new prac­tices to keep these tiny bubs at the op­ti­mum tem­per­a­ture of be­tween 36.5C and 37.5C.

“Strate­gies de­vel­oped to main­tain ther­mal sta­bil­ity in­clude a new method of wrap­ping the ba­bies in poly­eth­yl­ene so they can still be ex­am­ined with­out heat loss,” Ms Pader­nia said. WEST­MEAD Hos­pi­tal’s se­nior phar­ma­cist Tony Lai and his team are ed­u­cat­ing doc­tors on the use of broad-spec­trum an­timi­cro­bials so pa­tients don’t be­come sus­cep­ti­ble to in­fec­tions in hos­pi­tal.

An­timi­cro­bials kill micro­organ­isms or keep them from mul­ti­ply­ing or grow­ing.

They are most com­monly used to pre­vent or treat dis­ease or in­fec­tions due to micro­organ­isms.

“By us­ing a nar­rowspec­trum an­timi­cro­bial, we are tar­get­ing the in­fec­tion with­out com­pro­mis­ing the pa­tient’s im­mune sys­tem against other bugs,” Mr Lai said. BLACK­TOWN Hos­pi­tal has taken the lead with a hos­pi­tal-wide med­i­ca­tion doc­u­men­ta­tion pro­gram that paves the way for elec­tronic pre­scrib­ing.

The pro­ject staff de­vel­oped im­prove­ments to drug doc­u­men­ta­tion with a fo­cus on ad­mis­sion and dis­charge.

Elec­tronic med­i­ca­tion man­age­ment im­prove­ment phar­ma­cist An­nie Chong said the sys­tem aimed to re­move bar­ri­ers to iden­ti­fy­ing ac­cu­rate med­i­ca­tion his­to­ries and im­prove a pa­tient’s un­der­stand­ing of their drugs.

The fix in­cluded pro­vid­ing more in­for­ma­tion to emer­gency de­part­ments. ONE of the big­gest chal­lenges in West­mead Hos­pi­tal’s Neu­ro­science Unit is watch­ing for pa­tients who may fall.

Clin­i­cal nurse con­sul­tant Diane Lear said the na­ture of the pa­tient’s in­jury or ill­ness makes them prone to fall­ing and po­ten­tially fur­ther in­jury.

“We had more than 2000 ad­mis­sions last year,” Diane said.

To re­duce the like­li­hood of top­pling over, staff as­sess pa­tients weekly.

They have also al­lo­cated a spe­cial room with beds that can be low­ered to the ground with con­cave mat­tresses and the room is staffed by a nurse 24/7.

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