Editorial: Mid-Winter 2020
In the past two months in particular, but since a much longer time on and off, I have heard of, or have been confronted with, either directly or indirectly, the ‘care’ side of healthcare. Sadly, those experiences, across the board, were mostly negative.
Therefore, I feel inclined to want to issue a reminder today. A reminder of what caring really is about.
To begin though, I want to shout out to those that are professionally ‘caring’; to those that have chosen to work in health-care, the nurses, carers, and doctors. Their job is, in my opinion, one of the hardest jobs to do. To handle weakness, sickness, end of life even is physically, mentally and emotionally exhausting. The profession of a carer deserves the greatest of respect, the greatest acknowledgment and gratitude, and sadly, widely receives only lousy recompense. This ‘health-care’ is a professional form of care; the stranger caring for another stranger…and there is currently something going very wrong in this type of care.
As I said above, I have in the recent past heard almost only of negative experiences with health care. I have heard of lacking care, of denied care, of maltreatment in care, of suffering by ‘care’. This is sad and scary, to say the least.
Someone, who’s health is frail, generally feels weakened, helpless, frustrated and scared.
A patient is vulnerable because he or she cannot control, has no personal power over what is happening, and cannot, by own internal effort influence what is happening. In such a state, where he or she cannot recover alone, the request for help is mortifying and all efforts are generally received thankfully. The care, in such a case should be given willingly and respectfully.
Nowadays though, with the reduced number of carers, be it nurses, doctors or other caregivers, tending to ever more patients on busy hospital wards, in nursing homes or while delivering home care, takes the passion out of the profession. Being under pressure to fulfill the tasks of many for ever less pay, turns the caring job into a hated chore, and nurtures frustration that not seldom leads to stress, even burnout.
A patient is likely unaware of such workplace problems and likely cannot give such concerns much thought. Ideally, a patient should not become aware of such states, and his or her care should not suffer on such account. Sadly, the reality is often different, and patients are made to feel the frustration, the work stress, the antipathy to the job. Often, this shows to the patient in the form of lacking or reduced ‘caring’ in their care.
In this service to the vulnerable patient, frightened, unwell, in pain perhaps, patients must be listened to, must be spoken to clearly, understandably, must be assured that they are given the care that gives them the best possible comfort in their state. No matter how hard the task, no matter how hard the job is every day, the place of the patient, the state of sickness, is much harder.
It goes without saying that politics must undertake a reform of the health care services, in many countries across the globe, because, truth be told, the caring professions are much neglected, understaffed and widely badly paid. However, until this is the case, the carer, must practice a respectful, caring, professional interaction with the patient. Personal indispositions and troubles have no place in the care of the ill. These must be left at the door, before entering a sickroom. The patient is not at fault for the state of the politics, the bad payment or the stress of the workplace. It is not the patients fault the profession is troubled. The patient needs help in his or her suffering. He or she is fighting the bigger battle.
My hope is that politics recognizes where it is at fault in this matter and will reform all that is going awry. The faster this happens the better. It is not right that someone falling ill should fear and dread the help he or she is required to accept. However, health-care can not wait for politics to catch up, the ‘caring’ has to be put back into ‘health-care’ now. Hopefully, the care-givers of today can find their passion again, or at least can acknowldege that their patients need their care, no matter what is going wrong on the side of the caring for their health.
I have chosen to feature the remedy Petroleum here. It is one of the main remedies for travel sickness, and I was reminded of it when looking for a remedy that would match ‘nausea that is improved by eating’. Aside of Cocculus, Geslsemium, and Tabacum, Petroleum is one of the main remedies for motion sickness. It can easily be identified by the above described characteristic symptoms, the empty feeling in the stomach that is improved by eating, the heavy head, vertigo and dizziness. It is definitely one to remember when travelling.
In this issue of Clever H. are featured some great articles by fabulous authors. You can read on the successful treatments for diverse health concerns, on approaches to health issues and materia medica for certain complaints. I hope you find these articles interesting.
If you would like to write for an upcoming issue of Clever H., have an interesting case to unravel, some valuable experience, learning or wisdom to share..please do get in touch. The next issue will be published on April 1st.
Best of wishes