CASE STUDY

You are caring for an 82-year-old woman who has been hospitalized for several weeks for burns that she sustained on her lower legs during a cooking accident. Before the time of her admission, she lived alone in a small apartment. The patient reported on admission that she has no surviving family. Her support system appears to be other elders who live in her neighborhood. Because of transportation difficulties, most of them are unable to visit frequently. One of her neighbors has reported that she is caring for the patient’s dog, a Yorkshire terrier. As you care for this woman, she begs you to let her friend bring her dog to the hospital. She says that none of the other nurses have listened to her about such a visit. As she asks you about this, she begins to cry and tells you that they have never been separated. You recall that the staff discussed their concern about this woman’s well-being during report that morning. They said that she has been eating very little and seems to be depressed.

1. Based on Nightingale’s work, identify specific interventions that you would provide in caring for this patient.

2. Describe what action, if any, you would take regarding the patient’s request to see her dog. Discuss the theoretical basis of your decision and action based on your understanding of Nightingale’s work.

3. Describe and discuss what nursing diagnoses you would make and what interventions you would initiate to address the patient’s nutritional status and emotional well-being.

4. As the patient’s primary nurse, identify and discuss the planning you would undertake regarding her discharge from the hospital. Identify members of the discharge team and their roles in this process. Describe how you would advocate for the patient based on Nightingale’s observations and descriptions of the role of the nurse.

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