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Karen Lynne Nivens

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One Voice
By Karen Lynne Nivens
Saturday, June 19, 2010

Rated "G" by the Author.

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One person can make a positive difference. Don't ever doubt that or yourself.

I complained of the way a person I knew was discharged from a local hospital.  This was not in the papers or rather our case was not in the papers but I complained to the heads of the hospital.  When I said heads I mean the hospital and it's main hospital corporate office.  The hospital met with me and answered questions.  I felt that meeting was more of a way to change my mind but it was just a way to fill in some gaps for me and let them know my feelings.  My mind was not changed.  I was then armed with all the facts and a "pen".  Actually my keyboard not a real pen but a figurative pen in the grand adage of "the pen is mighter than the sword".  I filed a complaint with our state board of health.  They investigated and substantiated my main claim.  Fortunately there was no harm that came to the person discharged but it very easily could have.  There is no law suit, that was not my intention.  My intention was an improvement to the process.  I met again with different hospital members who apologized for the incident and the poor handling of the first meeting.  They told me of a policy in the works at the time of my grievance and it was improved upon based on our meeting.  Then when the state investigated the incident, it actually gave the hospital a better opportunity to get their new policy approved.  After the visit by the state board of health, the new policy was approved.  I hope that the new policy will keep others safe. That was my goal.  No hospital wants to harm a patient, safety is their goal as well.

Apparently one voice does matter.  One voice can bring an issue that needs improvement to light.  It can start a conversation that initiates positive change.  So never be afraid to speak out especially for those who can't for themselves.  If you have to, if you are terrified of public speaking like I am, then write.  Write anyone and everyone you can think of until they respond.  Believe me they will and more often than not things will be improved from your persistance.  And if you are still young and someone tells you that you are stubborn and will argue with a tree.  Say "Thank you" and continue.


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Reviewed by J Howard 5/13/2011
speaking for a vulnerable population is always valuable. an educated voice is always valuable.
-thanks for sharing

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