Flying without a net-or an AED
Thank you for "Medical Emergency at 30,000 Feet" (Sharing, September 2010),* which I found very helpful. Having taken many long flights, I've occasionally responded to calls for medical personnel. Your article confirms my suspicion that emergency medical equipment and supplies vary by airline.
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On my last international flight to Asia, an ophthalmologist and I responded to a request for medical assistance. I was astounded to realize that an automated external defibrillator (AED) wasn't available and the flight attendants didn't seem to know what one was. Fortunately, one wasn't needed. We also didn't have I.V. fluid or equipment, and we weren't offered any options for contacting ground medical help. Thankfully, the sick passenger recovered without intervention. I think the emergency equipment carried on long-distance flights should be standardized and an AED should be available on all flights.
-Dian Ruder, BS, RN
Why the need for secrecy?
I read with interest "10 Tips for Documenting Domestic Violence" (September 2010).* The article warns nurses not to include "the names of the social worker or medical advocate in the documentation to protect the safety of ancillary healthcare personnel." Why wouldn't you include their names?
-Mary H. Kieler, BSN, RN
Bethel Park, Pa.
Linda Lentz, MA, RN, replies: Thanks for letting me clarify this. Of course medical documentation must include names of clinicians, but I was referring to records that go home with a patient, such as discharge summaries. Instead, refer to clinicians by job title in these documents to help prevent retaliation by the perpetrator.
In her editorial, "Who Do You Want to be When You Grow Up?" (September 2010),* Linda Laskowski-Jones says that character-who we are-shapes our destiny more than what we are. People judge us not on what we do but on how we do our work.
Nurses require formal preparation to develop leadership and management skills. We must step away from the negative image of RNs as the least prepared healthcare professionals. The requirement for a baccalaureate degree for entry-level nursing practice is long overdue. Nurses need to be ready to answer the question, "Who do you want to be when you grow up?"
-Anna Liza D. Fernandez, BSN, RN, CVOR
* Individual subscribers can also access these articles free online at http://www.nursing2010.com. [Context Link]