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Patient with a Temperature

The patient in room 209 has been coughing all morning. When Jana took the patient’s vital signs at 7:00am, her temperature was 99.1º and her respiration was slightly labored.

At 11:00am, Jana took the patient’s vital signs again. Everything was the same, except that this time, the patient’s temperature had risen to 100.3º. Additionally, the patient was flushed and complaining of being too hot.

Keeping all the patients healthy is part of every nursing assistant’s job. When a patient is like Jana’s, there is a reason to be concerned. So what should Jana do?

According to the procedures of her facility, Jana is required to flag—put a special note—on the patient’s chart to let the nurse in charge know what is going on. Jana will also take steps to make the patient more comfortable by offering water. When the patient’s coughing gets worse, Jana will raise the patient’s bed to make it easier for her to breathe.

Everything Jana does is to help the patient and follow the rules of the facility and the requirements of her job. The procedures that Jana learns and follows are necessary to make sure all employees know how to communicate with each other and how to help their patients. The procedures give information about many rules and regulations including the rule about how to put an alert or flag in a patient’s chart.

Because of Jana’s actions, the patient received the medical attention necessary to treat an infection and make a full recovery.

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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