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Debbie Kaufman » Author of historical Christian fiction

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How Important are Sterile Procedures Anyway? Mackenzie’s Story

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?

  • March 23, 2014 - 1:02 pm

    Peggy - This is the very least of protocol that should be followed. It’s not NEW requirements. The very least we expect is people providing health care, especially for children, follow protocol.
    Seriously!?!ReplyCancel

  • April 24, 2014 - 10:50 pm

    Debbi - I hate to say that I have seen this at many hospitals. I have done a few things when I notice it…tell a supervisor, write it on a comment card or survey and post it on their websit. I hope your granddaughter is doing better. I am looking forward to seeing you tomorrow at the lunchon as I will be at your table ReplyCancel

Readers’ Luncheons

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?

  • April 11, 2012 - 3:46 pm

    Mal Olson - Hi Debbie,
    I was at the luncheon yesterday, sorry I didn’t get a chance to meet you. I live within thirty miles of Oak Creek.

    Thanks for the cute little “duck” soap that I found in my goodie bag. I’ll be sure to check out The Doctor Mission–your give away worked because I usually don’t read a lot of historical romance.

    I write romantic suspense and therefore I’m heavily into reading RS. Just had my very first release–Shadow of Deceit come out in March (The Wild Rose Press).

    I wish you much luck and success with The Doctor Mission.

    Mal OlsonReplyCancel

  • April 28, 2013 - 6:40 am

    Judy - Debbie,
    Meeting you at the luncheon warmed my heart. I am SO glad I had the opportunity to meet you face-to-face! What an honor and a privilege. You are such a sweet and kind person. I send you hugs of love and hugs of support as you continue on your journey. I will be reading you and smiling from the inside out.

    May your day be filled knowing you did good yesterday. You brought joy to my heart. Thank you!ReplyCancel

HEARTH AND HOME: My New Office

   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.

  • November 7, 2011 - 11:08 pm

    Pamela V. Mason - Debbie! I love this! It’s beautiful and professional and right in the front of your home where you get all the good light and you can see what’s going on everywhere else!
    How on earth did you write The Doctor’s Mission without it?

    My office is in the dining room – my house has one great room, so no formal living area like a traditional layout has. My Hero built my desk himself, and I’ve repurposed the antique buffet to store my books and supplies… but everything still finds its way all over the place. But I love the light and the view and knowing the kitchen, myHero, and my boys are just feet away – all with the tv set or whatever else is going on so I can hear it but not have to see unless I swivel around.

    Love this and thanks for sharing with us!ReplyCancel

  • November 7, 2011 - 11:41 pm

    Peggy Anderson - Debbie, I have a corner in my bedroom, I’m trying to ‘re-purpose’, to finish up some scrapbooking, but I keep putting it off. I hate being a procrastinator. The coolest thing though, an antique dealer just ‘gave’ me a chair that will NOT be useful for scrapbooking but I look forward to owning it. It is said to have come from Jane Mansfield’s Estate Sale, but it is not documented. It’s been stored for as long I’ve known about it. It will be inspiring, I hope just to look at. Ha!
    I need to go back and read more about your book. I need to know, if my mom would like it. She likes romance novels but she does not go for anything that is too graphic. It might become her Christmas present. I was telling her about you last time I saw her.
    Congrats on your room and your book! You seem to have really followed your hearts desires.ReplyCancel

  • November 7, 2011 - 11:55 pm

    Laurel Barrett - Hi Debbie, I am so happy for you. Yes, I pre-ordered your book, couldn’t wait to get it. I believe the wait was worth it because I am really enjoying it! I am an avid reader, always have been; my day is not complete without a good read. You should see me when I am out of reading material, digging through boxes to find something. So I held off buying a book last week because I had received an email; Saturday, I think, letting me know your’s had been shipped. I let them know at the office today that Griffin had a new published author, Congrats and great success to you. Glad you never gave up your dream.ReplyCancel

  • November 8, 2011 - 1:49 am

    Julee J. Adams - Love it and yes, I’m all about using what you have. It looks like a comfortable space where you can get a lot done.

    My office/craft room is our old bedroom. My writing desk and bookcase are from Mom and Dad’s old house. The cats (Boris and Natasha–yes, they’re evil) will come in to meow at me every once in a while. I have most of my craft supplies organized in the closet and a china hutch full of things I love in here too.

    Life is good, isn’t it? Thanks for sharing.ReplyCancel

  • November 8, 2011 - 3:02 am

    Shanon Grey - I absolutely love it. I am famous for converting living rooms into offices, libraries–or both. It really does make the “work” go better having a special and professional place. It’s beautiful and just perfect, the testament to which is lying on the floor, asleep.ReplyCancel

  • November 8, 2011 - 2:00 pm

    Dianna Love - Debbie – Love the new writing digs! It’s so important to have a place that you only write. Even though I write everywhere from airports to riding in a car, when I need to lock down and get pages done I use my writing “cave.” You are so smart to bring someone in to help you see your home space in a different way.ReplyCancel

  • November 8, 2011 - 5:01 pm

    Missy Tippens - Debbie, I love it!! What a great room. I’m jealous.

    I work on the couch on my laptop. I took over a corner of my son’s bedroom for a bookshelf when he left for college. But when I tried to take the room over totally, he moved everything out once he came back home that summer! :) Now that he’ll be graduating in May, though, I think maybe I can sneak back in there. I don’t think he plans to live at home ever again (sob!) Maybe finally have a nice office will make it easier to bear. :)

    MissyReplyCancel

  • November 8, 2011 - 5:13 pm

    Sandra Elzie - Love your new space. Mine needs that green paint you said isn’t on your walls. Actually, Jack (the cat) loves to lay on my desk in front of the terminal…but his tail usually lopps over onto my keys. Gotta love our pets, though.ReplyCancel

  • November 9, 2011 - 4:40 pm

    Tammy Schubert - Love your space. I want to hear more about the work you did with the consultant. In fact, I’m thinking about the PFHT blog. You’ll get an email soon. Enjoy your new writing space!ReplyCancel

  • November 10, 2011 - 12:16 am

    Tami Brothers - LOVE it, Debbie! I like that she did it with what you already had. Very professional.ReplyCancel

  • November 10, 2011 - 12:36 am

    admin - Thanks guys. Drum roll, please. According to my handy little randomizer.org. Sandy Elzie is the winner of Debbie Macomber’s Knit together!ReplyCancel

  • January 26, 2012 - 2:05 am

    admin - Test new commentsReplyCancel

  • April 12, 2012 - 12:06 am

    Joanne Bischof - Yay for new writing spaces :) And budget friendly is even better!ReplyCancel

  • February 25, 2014 - 11:36 am

    Jean - So glad to have discovered your site when friending someone else. I relate to everything you say in this posting. I stopped my designated space due to house full of people and my desire to pare down my stuff. I do have a writing dog, Lucie, a brown and white, loving, quiet, adopted chihuahua. All the best to you!ReplyCancel

Winners from Reading The Doctor’s Mission Excerpt

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:)

  • September 27, 2011 - 6:48 pm

    Carlene Love Flores - Received my signed copy of The Doctor’s Mission in the mail yesterday! Absolutely cannot wait to read it! Thank you, Debbie.ReplyCancel

Read and Win! The Doctor’s Mission Excerpt is Live!

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:

EXTRA ENTRIES:

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 debbiekaufmanauthor@gmail.com  (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

  • August 30, 2011 - 2:42 pm

    Carlene Love Flores - Hello Debbie,
    There are so many layers of conflict in this first chapter I would love to read on and see how the good doctor and pastor deal with them all! It really hit me when the malaria policy was brought up. I really felt that was Dr. Mary’s key to accompanying William to Nynabo (spelling?) Congratulations on your book!ReplyCancel

    • August 31, 2011 - 7:06 pm

      admin - Thanks, Carlene (Waves madly at the waterworldmermaids!) Yep, Nynabo. Some of those names were a killer :) ReplyCancel

  • August 30, 2011 - 2:48 pm

    Lori Bush - I’m hooked!!!!!!! I simply can not wait to devour the adventures of Mary & William in Nynabo:) So proud of you Debbie, remember us when you are rich & famous!ReplyCancel

    • August 31, 2011 - 7:03 pm

      admin - LOL, on the rich and famous part! But I’m glad you liked it!ReplyCancel

  • August 31, 2011 - 2:28 pm

    Connie Ziebarth - Debbie great book. I really enjoyed reading the first chapter. Can’t wait to finish the book. You are a great writer. Congratulations!ReplyCancel

    • August 31, 2011 - 7:02 pm

      admin - Thanks, Connie! So sweet of you to say so.ReplyCancel

  • August 31, 2011 - 6:46 pm

    Rosemarie - Wow! What a great hook of a first chapter. The setting is exotic, William is a wounded soul and Mary looks to be a fireball. You interspersed some historical facts beautifully without stopping the flow. Can’t wait to see what happens next.ReplyCancel

    • August 31, 2011 - 7:02 pm

      admin - Thanks, Rosemarie. Considering your understanding of history, high praise indeed. :) ReplyCancel

  • August 31, 2011 - 9:14 pm

    Rosemarie - Deb,
    Your facebook message doesn’t allow me to ‘share’ with the rest of my FB friends. I know some may be interested in your story. There is no ‘share’ button.ReplyCancel

  • September 1, 2011 - 2:36 am

    Nancy Northcott - Debbie, you’ve thrown the hero and heroine for a loop right out of the gate! I like the fact that they’re trying so see each other’s points of view, not just sniping blindly.ReplyCancel

  • September 1, 2011 - 4:21 am

    Pam Asberry - Deb, I LOVE the first chapter of your book! You are truly a gifted writer. I can’t wait to get an autographed copy in my hands. I already like your Facebook page and subscribe to your newsletter; I will see what I can do about wrangling some friends to check things out. Best of luck and continued success!ReplyCancel

  • September 1, 2011 - 4:24 am

    admin - Thanks, Nancy. I hate it when characters just bicker a lot!
    Pam, those things get you automatic extra entries! Thanks, girl!ReplyCancel

  • September 1, 2011 - 2:31 pm

    Kitg777@yahoo.com - Great first chapter! I can’t wait to see what happens with William and Dr. Mary!ReplyCancel

  • September 2, 2011 - 11:31 am

    Julie Burke - I am glad the female doctor did not hold her peace! I cannot wait to see how God straightens out the attitude of William. Obviously, they both bear false guilt over the deaths of loved ones, so I can see where common ground will bring some repair of the breach, other than the chemistry that is! Your research is no doubt accurate and I got a real visual of the mode of transportation that they arrived at camp in. So, is this the same Dutch who established rule over South Africa with the British?? I will have to see where this place is on a map. I am very impressed and ready to read on! Julie BurkeReplyCancel

  • September 3, 2011 - 2:59 am

    Dianna Shuford - Debbie, you did an awesome job on that first chapter. I’ll snoopy dance with you! Poor William- to actually think he can play God in sneaking ways to get Mary sent from danger. And boy did Mary tell him! I liked her. Lots of spunk…my kind of heroine.

    May your sales be plenty and your reviews be favorable.

    DiannaReplyCancel

    • September 3, 2011 - 3:01 am

      admin - Thanks, Dianna. I guess even characters have to learn they aren’t the ones in control :) ReplyCancel

  • September 3, 2011 - 3:13 am

    Vanetta Quintana - LOL Debbie great first chapter, I can’t wait to read more! I think I am going to love William… don’t we all “talk to God in that sense?” I am also excited about reading more about the location of this book. I will have to go and pre-order it so I can find out… Can’t wait to “review” it! :) Thanks for the chance and I posted on FB and invited others to check your site out! :) ReplyCancel

    • September 3, 2011 - 3:37 am

      admin - Thanks, Vanetta!ReplyCancel

  • September 3, 2011 - 3:49 am

    Diane Peters - Debbie, Loved the first chapter! When I read the title, I assumed the doctor was a man. Shame on me! Can’t wait to see how the story develops and what God has in store for these two. Diane PetersReplyCancel

  • September 4, 2011 - 3:07 am

    cindy rushford - Debbie I loved the excerpt from your book and cannot wait to see the paces that Mary puts william through. I am sure she will lead him on a merry chase. I also want to see them both heal from their losses. Her from losing her brother and He from losing his beloved wife, Alice.ReplyCancel

    • September 4, 2011 - 3:13 am

      admin - Thanks for stopping by Cindy! That merry chase involves cannibals :) And healing, too!ReplyCancel

  • September 4, 2011 - 12:18 pm

    Heather Martin - Debbie! Great job! I can hardly wait to read the rest of the book. LUV that word “magnificent.” I imagine at some point Pastor Mayweather will realize that God answered his prayers abundantly, more than he could imagine.ReplyCancel

    • September 4, 2011 - 1:20 pm

      admin - Thanks, Heather!ReplyCancel

  • September 11, 2011 - 3:06 pm

    admin - Thanks to everyone who participated in my contest. I’m happy to announce my two winners, chosen by randomizer.org

    Carlene Love Flores
    AND
    Rosemarie Szostak!

    Ladies, send me your snail mail address by emailing me at debbiekaufmanauthorATgmailDOTcomReplyCancel

  • September 11, 2011 - 3:50 pm

    Carlene Love Flores - Yay!! I’m so excited! Thank you so much Debbie!ReplyCancel

  • July 11, 2014 - 6:05 pm

    Florence - Great hammer of Thor, that is pouflewlry helpful!ReplyCancel

  • July 13, 2014 - 5:11 am

    Rony - wow…those could have come from a famous rtrsaueant or better yet..some romantic luxury liner… well, in our dreams…but you know what I am saying….ReplyCancel

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