Patient Charter

I was sad when I read that article. After reading it, I told myself this could have been avoided with the patient charter. That's how important this topic is to me.

My mum was sick and visited the hospital. On her return I asked her about the diagnosis and to my surprise she said she didn't know. She wasn't told, neither did she ask. But the doctor prescribed some medicines for her and to her that was fine.

Another friend told me how badly she felt sick that nearly made her collapse. She was given a blood tonic and a couple of other drugs and yet when I asked her what the problem was she couldn't tell me. She too didn't ask. Oh wow!

Is that the norm? Why won't you be curious about what went wrong and what caused it, in order to take preventive measures if possible?

When I was 13 and had surgeries to correct the decompression on my T11 and T12 of my spinal cord, I made sure to ask some important questions. I did not hesitate to ask about the chest tube that was inserted into my ribs to drain the fluid from the surgery. It was too painful to be ignored. So it's difficult to think others can see a doctor without being inquisitive about the things causing the changes in their bodies.

The patient charter is a right and responsibility service between the health worker and the patient. What does it entail?

Every patient has the right to quality treatment regardless of what type of illness he or she is suffering from.

You have the right to be informed on your medical condition as well as the possible treatments available for you to make an informed decision.
Remember the days when chloroquine was used in treating malaria. Gosh that drug made me itch so bad. When on that drug and I get in touch with water, it's more than the trade war between the US and China. Then came artemetherlumefantrine which was equally bitter but with extra dosage. Although the drug fights malaria with ease, the number of pills to take is just crazy. Meanwhile there are other drugs which can equally do the job without half the stress of swallowing so much pills. If my doctor tells me about my options I'd definitely tell him to spare me the agony of swallowing so much pills. Maybe they have its injectable one.

Yes you have the right to know of the alternative treatments.

Most doctors write so clearly that even with the best lenses it will take forever to read what they wrote. You can't rely on reading from your medical folder when you go back home. Why not enquire when you still can?

Yes the doctor patient ratio in Ghana now is as wild as the bush fires of the Amazon. Doctors may not have the time to explain to every patient. Imagine being in a queue waiting to be attended to while a patient keeps asking the doctor several questions and it seems forever to be your turn.Jeeez, Yes it sucks but why not be patient and get all the help you need?

There may be emergency cases where you can't be informed and we trust the doctors to do the best for you.

Since it's a two way affair you can't be fighting for your rights when you neglect your responsibilities. You are responsible for providing your doctor with the necessary information needed for your diagnosis and treatment. Don't go telling lies, don't feel shy. They are bound by the oath of confidentiality.

While the hospital provides security and ensures your safety, you as a patient must show respect for the right of other patients as well as the health workers.

You are also responsible for adhering to the doctor's instructions. Taking the prescribed medicines and reporting any strange development in the course of your treatment.

Nobody wants to be ill but when you do, you deserve the best of healthcare. To those ill and suffering, I wish you speedy recovery. I love to know my readers are in good health all the time. Stay safe, stay healthy and take care.
Bridget Delali

Comments

  1. gifted50

    Well written post, you’ve assessed the issue from every point of view. In the US I thought each patient is always told a diagnosis, I work in the ER and that’s our practice.However I have heard patients tell different stories…but must always seek to be informed. Thank you.

    1. readerstellnotales

      Thanks so much for contributing to this post, and the fact that you work in the ER and practice what is right should encourage others to do so as well. We will seek to be informed. Thanks again.

      1. Namy

        Wow, such an eye opener!! When I was younger, and falling sick a lot more often than I do now, I was always scared to ask questions and know diagnosis because I assumed that the doctor always knew best. I took prescriptions without asking questions. You do have a right to know what went wrong, in order to take precaution next time!! Thanks Bri 😘

  2. Robert C Day

    Very interesting article, Bridget. I love the insight this gives me into the Ghana healthcare system. Articles like this should be read at the top level of government and administration so that they can contribute towards making a difference.

    1. Post
      Author
  3. Pingback: Reader Profiles – Bridget | robertcday

  4. Yarh

    This is a very important and necessary post. I remember some years back I was rushed to the hospital because I had severe migraine. The whole ordeal scared me so much I decided to ask the doctor what was wrong with me… he seemed so annoyed by my question that he just said “rhinitis”… I mean like really? Rhi what? I couldn’t even spell the damn word and when I asked him to spell it for me I could see he was less than an inch from throwing sth at me… 😂😂😂😂. I tried to read about it when I got home and none of the symptoms tallied with what I experienced. I’m in Med school now and of course I know about rhinitis… (especially because of that experience )…. but for real tho … I think even doctors don’t expect the patients to ask such questions.. a norm which must be broken if we hope to get better at preventing diseases and/or their recurrence. Sorry I typed too much… Nice piece.

    1. readerstellnotales

      I love the length my dear, that was quite an experience and an unfortunate one for that matter. At least you sought for the information just to be disappointed. Our young doctor in the making, please tell us of our diagnosis okay. I know you will be a great doctor, not o my with the treatment of rhinitis🤣😊😍. Thanks Yarh😊

    1. readerstellnotales

      The CNN post inspired it. I felt sad for a baby lost, the mother’s emotional and physical pain. I had to do something and that’s writing. Thanks for always passing through.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *