In my city of Rockford, Illinois there are three major hospitals. The first is Swedish American Hospital; the next is Saint Anthony’s Medical Center and last but not least is Rockford Memorial Hospital. Each of these hospitals has their own claim to fame and many of Rockford’s citizens hardly pay it any attention until those services are needed. Many of us see a hospital as an important and vital part of any community but do not care to visit them enough to compare as one would, let’s say, restaurants. This is the case with this story.
About one week ago, my Aunt was involved in a car accident which landed her in the hospital with what is being said was a dislocated bone in her chest which seem to be too close to her heart. She had been traveling with her friend as she has always done when she heard a loud pop which seemed to come from the front passenger side of the car she was traveling in. This happened to be the side she was seated in. It has been reported that her and the driver of the car both heard this loud pop and it is further reported that a witness had said he had seen a small red truck speed by on the right side of the vehicle my aunt was traveling in about the same time as they heard the loud pop. The occupants of the car remember hearing the loud pop, they remember the vehicle shaking and the driver losing control. They remember running into the electrical pole which was on the opposite side of the street but they do not remember a small red truck.
Suffice to say that both my aunt and her friend were transported to the nearest hospital. The nearest one was Swedish American. My aunt had requested to be taken to Rockford Memorial because she had been there for a number of days just a few weeks prior to this accident. My aunt’s friend had requested Saint Anthony’s but possibly due to their injuries, or maybe a city ordinance, they were taken to the closest one. Not being able to choose which hospital you wish to be treated in is not a good thing and maybe something worth looking into but the subject of this story. The subject is how my Aunt rates Swedish American Hospital compared to Rockford Memorial when it comes to courtesy and patient care.
She began by observing how often those who were attending to her would actually attend to her. She discovered that for some reason the personnel of Rockford Memorial were constantly checking upon her as if she was the only one and the most important person in the hospital, while those working in Swedish American had to be reminded that she was there. She witnessed that when the family began to show up and gather, that the rules of only two at a time was strictly enforced for the purpose that if any serious complications arose in the area she was in, there would be plenty of room for the doctors and nurses to operate in without running over family members who may be to shocked or unaware that they were in the way. She noticed the opposite in Swedish American and while it may be a good thing for the family since some people who visit seem to forget that there are other family members wishing to visit as well, it may be problematic if something serious occurred and the doctors and nurses had to navigate through her large family to get to whatever the issue was. Needless to say, that large of a gathering could have been another accident waiting to happen.
While courtesy and customer/patient care is important in all types of business, my main concern with the differences and degree of the medical service she received while in both hospitals. To that she really had no complaints. It was reported that both places were as careful with her and her treatment as if she had been a new born baby. So medical wise they were even. What ranks Rockford Memorial Hospital at the top of her list when it comes to hospitals was the extra mile that they traveled to make her stay more comfortable than the other. Her story no longer makes me concerned about being in an accident and having to be taken to a hospital, only that I wish if I ever was that I would be closer to Rockford Memorial Hospital.