I am not a complainer. Those of you who follow me on FB and Twitter know this. But this morning I am both concerned for my granddaughter, the other children in care around her, and very, very angry with the New York Presbyterian Morgan Stanley Children’s Hospital of New York. It has been reported to me that the infection in her bloodstream is from the central line that was removed in an unsterile manner, an act her parents had questioned as the person removing it did not use a mask. This was the culmination of several incidents where Mackenzie’s cure’s parents had to remind personnel just to wash their hands. YES, REALLY, to wash their hands. In a hospital. Around a post-surgical patient with active drains. Really.
Here’s what I randomly observed the second day that Kenzie was out of ICU and on a regular floor. A nurse that had cared for Kenzie her 1st day on the floor stopped at another child’s room, one that was across from the small family lounge where I was sitting and talking on the phone. Now, all the nurses and visitors I had watched enter that room both before and after this moment had observed isolation precautions before walking into the room: washing, foaming, wearing the sterile gown, stripping off afterward, etc. All the things I would expect. This day, the nurse in question stopped at the door of the room when the child in isolation called out. After a couple of questions, the nurse determined that the child was asking her to come and deal with a beeping IV machine. The nurse looked to her right, and then to her left. There was no on else in the hall. I can only guess that she had forgotten me, sitting right behind her. She then walked into the room without any precautions, gowning, etc. fiddled with the IV, chatted with the child, and then exited the room. At no point did she wash or foam or do anything that would normally be required. I have to wonder why that child needed infection precautions and how many patients this nurse spread the germs to at that point. Hmm. With this manner of infection control is it any wonder that our Kenzie gets sick shortly after her central line is removed and the day before her discharge?
But, the story goes deeper than this. Yesterday, My granddaughter was moved to an isolation room as an infection control measure. Good, right? Not really. This morning we learned that the room had not been cleaned from the previous patient. Yep, that’s right, no cleaning before Kenzie was moved to the room. What else has she now been exposed to at this hospital?
Quick point before I move on: We followed a great doctor here when he moved his practice. I do not believe he had any knowledge of practices on the floor as this was only his 2nd or 3rd surgery at this hospital. And right now, Cindy, a nurse who has been on top of things any time she was in charge, has been doing a great job of making sure sterile procedures are being followed. We are not condemning all nurses, etc. Unfortunately the horse has left the barn and only now the door is being shut….
So, why am I telling you this? Because I want three outcomes here, outcomes that we might be able to get by sharing, tweeting, etc.
1. I want Mackenzie on a medical flight to another children’s hospital of her parents’ choosing, and paid for by the hospital.
2. I want immediate, hospital-wide training and changes on infection control at Morgan Stanley Children’s in NYC.
3. I want other parents of currently hospitalized children at this hospital to be aware of the risks and to watch carefully for infection control procedures. Another child should not have to suffer this nightmare.
Will you help me get these changes made by sharing and tweeting this post?
- Logo design by Andrew Bernier
This week I get to run away from home and do one of my favorite things: attend a readers’ luncheon and host my own author table. I’ll be at the first annual Barbara Vey Readers Luncheon in Oak Creek, WI on April 10th. Thirty five authors will be in attendance and over 200 readers have purchased tickets.
As an avid reader, I wish I’d known years ago that these types of events existed. If you’ve never been to one, you buy a ticket and eat lunch with an author. Usually the author has some small gift for you at the table–a book, chocolate, anything. During lunch, you chat with your author, ask questions, and pretty much get to know each other. After lunch you’re treated to a talk by the keynote speaker, usually a very well-known and popular author. This luncheon has Heather Graham as the keynote.
In addition to all the other fun, these events typically involve lots and lots of raffle baskets donated by the authors, their publishers, local businesses, etc. You would not believe how extravagent these things get. Personally, if I wasn’t attending as an author, I’d be investing in raffle tickets! My basket contains a Kindle, an e-copy of my book, The Doctor’s Mission, and other fun things.
Yep, if I’d know events like this were out there, I’d have gone in a heartbeat. If you think something like this would be fun, google “readers lunch” and see what you get. Now, for this one, ticket sales are closed. However, I have one ticket to give to a reader who attends the FREE event Monday night (April 9th). You can come out and see myself, Dianna Love, Trish Milburn, and Marjorie Liu at the Tri City Bank, 2115 10th Avenue South Milwaukee, hosted by the local public library. (more details at www.barbaravey.com) We’ll have a panel discussion, chat, and sign books.
For future reference, I’ll also be in Huntsville at Heart of Dixie’s luncheon on May 5, 2012, http://www.heartofdixie.org/luncheon.html with NYTimes Bestselling author Lora Leigh and, on November 3, 2012, I’ll be in Birmingham, AL at Southern Magic’s luncheon with #1 NYT Bestselling authors Sherrilyn Kenyon and Dianna Love (and many others). http://southernmagic.org/luncheon.html
BTW, tickets usually sell out at these events, so buy early!
Hope to see you at one. These things take place all over the country, so you can probably find one with authors you like that is reasonably local to you!
So, have you ever been to a readers’ luncheon? Want to go to one? Who would be your favorite author to sit with at lunch?
By Debbie Kaufman
Over the last couple of months, I’ve been redecorating. I hired a young woman whose work I’d seen before and challenged her to help me make a few changes, including finding a place to call my own for writing. The caveat was that we had to use as many things I already owned as possible. Can I get an “Amen” to being budget conscious?
One of my favorite results came when we took the front living room, a room that when originally designed had too many openings to easily accommodate a sofa, and turned it into a writing palace. We moved bookcases from other rooms, kept the rug, and traded other furniture around so I could use a small dresser to store my mailing supplies. I highly recommend this type of “repurposing” the things you already own when you are looking to make a change. The only new things in my office are the paint, the large monitor, the curtains that my friend Gail made for me, and the cubes on the bookshelves for organizing the storage.
Best of all, we got my favorite desk out of storage and I now had a place to use it. I originally purchased the William and Mary style desk you see in the picture above when I owned a 100+ year-old Victorian and the huge rooms dwarfed it. When we moved into this house, I couldn’t hardly get it in through the doors. BTW, did you notice that the desk style and my characters’ names in The Doctor’s Mission are the same? Coincidence?
Disclaimer: The walls look green in this first picture, but they aren’t. don’t ask. There is a reason why I normally leave the photography to my daughter and son-in-law!
So, where I used to be a bit of a house gypsy concerning my writing space, I now have a completed office that I love. Apparently, so do my dogs. In this rare photo where they are both out from under the desk, I managed to get a shot of the office dogs doing what they do best.
Sleeping and keeping me company.
I wouldn’t mind having you guys keep me company too. Just awake and on the blog, not the rug. Tuesdays are my new Heart and Home posts. And yes, I know it’s Monday, I’m just putting it out there a day early to give folks time to discover it exists. On Tuesdays I’ll share remodeling photos, pics from our Sunday suppers, or just anything related to family and the things I love.
To encourage you to stick around and visit, I’ll have the occasional contest for leaving a comment. Today’s giveaway is something I feel suited to Monday’s theme of Hearth and Home: Debbie Macomber’s Knit Together: Discover God’s Pattern For Your Life, a set of 3 cd’s read by Sonja Lanzener.
So tell me, have you redecorated, repurposed, or even rearranged in your home or a particular room? Is there a particular item that you own that you’ve found a new use for in your life? Or do you just have pets that are underfoot? Leave me a comment to be entered. I’ll draw a winner on Wednesday morning. Entries accepted until Nov. 8th at 11:59 p.m. EST. No prize subsitutions. One entry per person, per household. Void if not permitted in your state. US entries only.
WooHoo! I have two winners and lots of thank you to those who participated. My winners were chosen by randomizer.org after I numbered entries from all their different locations.
Carlene Love Flores and Rosemarie Szostak are my winners. Ladies contact me at debbiekaufmanauthorATgmailDOTcom with your snail mail addresses so I can ship your prizes!
Watch out for my next contest in October! And my blowout contest for the entire month of November! Gotta celebrate that November release in a big way
I managed to accomplish exactly one thing off my to-do list yesterday.
One out of twenty-three.
One of the five items I highlighted as essential.
But, it was a big ONE for me. I created, formatted and posted the excerpt from my first book, The Doctor’s Mission! Let us pause for the infamous Snoopy Dance.
And to really celebrate, I’m giving away books and more for those who take the time to read chapter one.
TWO lucky winners will each receive the following: 1. A set of Love Inspired Books consisting of one Love Inspired, one Love Inspired Suspense, and, of course, one Love Inspired Historical. 2. Your choice of a $10.00 Starbucks, Amazon, or Barnes and Noble gift card. 3. Small gift bag of jungle-inspired and author-related items.
HOW do you win one of those sets?
EASY: READ HERE: www.debbiekaufman.com/excerpt
Then come back to the blog here and leave me a comment about the excerpt. Any comment that reasonably indicates that you actually read the excerpt. Solely my discretion to decide if you did or not
Deadline to enter is Saturday, September 10, 2011 at 11:59 p.m. EST. I’ll randomly draw two names from all my comments on Sunday, September 11, 2011 and announce the winners in the comments here and in a separate, new blog post. Winners will have until Tuesday, September 13, 2011 to claim their prize as directed in the winner’s post. I reserve the right to reaward any unclaimed prizes! No purchase is necessary to enter this contest. Void if your state or country prohibits this type of contest by law. (Sorry, have to say that). Limit one entry per person, per email, per household during the contest period UNLESS obtained by the following means:
1. Refer a friend and have them leave your name in the comments. One extra entry for each referral.
2. Go “LIKE” my Facebook fan page and leave me a note about this contest on my wall. Don’t worry, if you already LIKE my page AND leave me a comment here, you still get FB credit. www.facebook.com/debbiekaufmanfanpage
3. Refer your friends to LIKE my Facebook fan page and have them leave your name in their comments on my wall. You both get the extra entry! No limit on referalls.
4. Sign up for my newsletter here: www.debbiekaufman.com/newsletter. (P.S. this also puts you in the running for an e-reader when I reach 1000 subscribers! Bonus!)
5. Refer a friend who signs up for my newsletter and lists you under referred by.
6. TEN EXTRA ENTRIES: Pre-order the book online and forward me a copy of your receipt at firstname.lastname@example.org (Hey, if you’re going to read it anyway, why not get extra credit?) I promise to take your name ONLY from your receipt and delete the rest. Prefer to mail a redacted receipt? It must arrive at my designated address no later than Sept. 10,2011. Not responsible for lost or late mail.
Mail your receipt along with your name, address, and contact email to:
Debbie Kaufman, 1423 Southworth Dr. Griffin, GA 30224
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