6 thoughts on “Depression in Medical Hospitals

  • August 4, 2010 at 10:38 am

    I love this article. I was in the hospital for the first time a few months ago and had to go back two weeks later. The first time was wonderful – the nurses were fabulous and talked to me and kept me in good spirits. The second time was miserable – I felt isolated and alone, no one was listening to my very reasonable concerns, the nurses were just busy even though they did the best they could, and I was worried it might be something serious.

  • August 5, 2010 at 1:51 pm

    Thank you for writing this. I live in New York, you live in Australia, but we’ve had the same experiences.

    Too often, the emotional well-being of hospital patients is completely ignored, leaving them feeling isolated, confused (did I do something wrong? was I bad?), guilty, and depressed.

    I believe being in a hospital can easily cause Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. Patients are facing serious medical problems. They might die. They’re very vulnerable. They’re under the control of others. Often they’re in pain. Often they’re isolated and frightened.

    The fact that anyone just pulled your curtains aside without announcing their presence is simply unacceptable. It’s a violation of your privacy. The fact that you were nude made it even worse. You can certainly point that out to someone at the hospital and ask them to try to ensure that it doesn’t happen to anyone again.

    I wonder if you might speak to your physician either before or during your hospitalization, explain that you’ve been depressed by hospitalizaitons in the past, and ask for help. If someone doesn’t show up, unfortunately, the burden is on you to ask again and again until you get the help you need.

    I commend you for finding all the positive things you did, and for your resiliency after you left. You obviously have a lot of courage.

  • August 6, 2010 at 2:28 am

    Hi Suzanne and Carla,
    I’m sorry to hear you both had an experience like that as well.
    I should have complained when the curtains were snapped back by the priest but I thought I had done something wrong by being naked in a hospital within a closed area 🙂
    Many, many years ago I worked as a student nurse (not one now) and the number of times dying patients were considered an inconvenience was horrendous. I remember after one patient died this sociopathic nurse telling me to hurry up as she wanted to go home.
    When a patient died on my shift I considered it an honour and it was a most sacred time and I have never forgotten that.

  • August 10, 2010 at 2:02 am

    Hey Carla,

    I too am a New Yorker(a Manhattan Suburbanite actually..I go to school in the city), I notice the care between urban hospitals and suburban hospitals is almost like night and day. I suffer from a chronic illness that every now and again requires a stay in the hospital. You never know when the bouts of pain and suffering are going to hit and while I have a hospital that is my designated hospital(where my doctor practices) that I try to get to(it’s in the suburbs) at times I have had to go to the ER in the city.

    The hospitals in the city are busy, dismissive and they forget about you. While most of those same hospitals provide top quality care, what good does that do if you are waiting three hours just to be seen by a doctor? I also notice that instead of doctors in the city hospitals they send in medical students, physicians assistants and nurse practitioners. I am sorry but I am not going to to be treated for a broken finger or to get my leg stitched up, I am going because I suffer from a chronic illness that results in pain, discomfort and a lot of other unpleasant things(I will not mention them here since I do not want to gross anyone out). I don’t need an intern or a medical student…I need a REAL doctor to know what they are doing so they can provide me with relief(both physically and mentally). When I know I am in competent hands it puts my mind at ease. Also waiting three hours for pain medication and antibiotics is absolutely horrifying when I am curled in a ball in pain. While I try not to visit city hospitals for my treatment…being in the city so often for school and other things sometimes makes in unavoidable.

    Now when I go to my designated hospital that is on Long Island, the care that I receive is always first class. My doctor that treats my condition practices there when he isn’t seeing patients during office hours and many times he comes down to see me, sit with me and make sure that my mind and body are both at ease. Also medications that are ordered are delivered to me within 20 minutes…not hours. Also the nursing staff and nursing assistants always have a smile on their faces and take the time to make sure I am as comfortable as I can be(they offer me warm blankets, pillows and ginger ale).

    I can totally relate to this blog post Sonia…hospitals can be a depressing place, especially when YOU are the one that is the patient and unable to leave when visiting hours are over.

    PS Sonia…I absolutely LOVE LOVE your blog and I am always checking up on psych central to see if you posted something new.

  • September 25, 2011 at 6:42 pm

    Aw, this was a really nice post. In thought I want to put in writing like this additionally – taking time and actual effort to make an excellent article… but what can I say… I procrastinate alot and certainly not seem to get one thing done.

  • July 18, 2013 at 5:56 am

    So I’m researching my own depression and run across a sentence with the word “nurses” highlighted. Being a nurse myself curiosity made me click on it and it brought me to this article. Don’t get me wrong, the issue brought up is very valid. And don’t even get me started on any of the absurd number of shortcomings in healthcare. I do, however, need to express that all nurses are not created equal. I am deeply offended that all of the bad parts of an experience are pinned on “nurses” alone. As for the nurse who assisted with walking that ignored you, that was wrong. Even if she was doing physical therapy’s job when she likely didn’t have near enough time for her own.


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