Wrapping up at Southwest General Health Center was a bitter sweet experience. We got to participate in so many activities while we were there and learned so much about the community. One of the programs we got to partake in was in the hospital's geriatric department. While with them, Melissa and I each got take part in what is known as the Gatekeeper Program. Through this program, elderly people in the community are identified by people such as mailmen, bank tellers, congregation members, or family members, to spot geriatric community members who may need assistance. The staff then go out on surprise home visits to see the patients who were recommended in their home setting. The staff consists of one social worker and one RN who go out to the homes together. During their visit they help the patient by trying to find out what they need assistance in during their everyday lives. Melissa and I got to go with the staff, and while we had bad luck, not actually getting into any of the patient's houses, we did get to observe a geriatric assessment in the hospital when a woman and her family from the Gatekeeper program came in. This is a great program helping the elderly people in the community get the help that they need.
Another fun activity we got to participate during our capstone was working at Southwest General's Neighborhood Care Center. The Neighborhood Care Center is a clinic that is available to residents within the hospital's taxing district. Also, the residents are in a required poverty level and do not have health insurance. The clinic is volunteer based by physicians and nurses from the hospital. It is open every Tuesday and Thursday night for general patients, but they also have special OB days when they can be staffed throughout the month. This was a great experience which I really enjoyed. The doctor who was working when we were there was a retired family practice physician with a lot of experience who taught us a lot about the clinic.
As far as our project went, I feel it was successful. We conducted a satisfaction survey of the patients from this grant year's transition nursing program. From the information we collected we were able to state that the patients who went through this program liked it very much. We were also able to identify certain areas that the patients needed more emphasize on, such as some congestive heart failure teaching related topics. We are putting the final works into our paper and look forward to sharing our final results with everyone at the Poster Presentation. This was a great semester at Southwest General Hospital and it can be a great site for future students!