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Challenges with Family Members

Mayra gives care to many patients every day. Today the daughter of a patient is very unhappy and says that her mother is not getting appropriate care.  Mayra takes a moment to remember what she learned in CNA class about working with challenging family members.

First, Mayra takes a deep breath, allowing her to remain calm. She is able to speak slowly and carefully with the patient’s daughter. She wants the daughter to know she is listening, so she gives her full attention to the daughter.

 

“What is the problem?” Mayra asks.  

The daughter yells, “Finally someone is listening to me!  Why hasn’t my mother had her shower today? She always gets her shower in the morning, and she didn’t get one today!”

Mayra knows that it is important to be empathetic and sensitive. She says, “I understand why you are upset. I apologize for the delay in your mother’s shower. I will check on the bathing schedule.” She wants to let the daughter know she is working on a solution to the problem. “I will return shortly with information on the bathing schedule.  Please wait here.”

Mayra goes to the schedule board and notices the shower is scheduled for later in the afternoon. She also looks to see if her supervisor is available. Mayra would like to let someone know that the daughter is upset about the change in the shower schedule. There is no supervisor available, so she writes a note in the patient’s chart to document the problem.

Mayra returns to speak with the daughter. “There was a change in the schedule. Your mother is scheduled for a shower this afternoon. I apologize for the delay.” The daughter calms down and says thank you to Mayra.

 

Mayra handled the challenging situation well. She took a deep breath, remained professional, and listened to the family member.  She found a solution to the problem and documented the complaint. She was empathetic with the daughter. Most importantly, she was able to continue giving good care to the patient.

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© 2015 by Southwest Adult Basic Education

Project made financially possible through grants from:

Southwest Initiative Foundation, Marshall Community Foundation, Southwest Regional Transition Partners, Southwest Adult Basic Education, Marshall Healthcare Partners