Navigating A Hospital For Information, Services Or Both

Yes, hospitals exist to help patients by giving them medication and (hopefully) cure their ailments. But sometimes we walk into hospitals with other purposes in mind, such as employment. How do you navigate the long halls and various rooms of a hospital? A hospital is like a microcosm of a small city or township; it has the same politics, the same problems (or more sometimes), the same types of people and more financial problems. Administration is considered as unnecessary red tape by doctors, doctors and considered egotistic and difficult by nurses, while patients put their faith in all. Read on to figure out who to approach for the right amount of information, service, or both:

In the Ward…

You will be mistaken if you think the doctor is in charge here. Yes, he gives the orders about the patients and signs their medical records, but the true shot- caller is the head nurse of the ward, or floor (depending on the hospital). Since she/ he stays on duty and stays around long after the doctor has gone back to his/ her office, they will know all the secrets, all the pressure points of the relevant people, and have cemented their authority long before the doctors realize who the real power is behind the scenes. If anyone needs anything looked up, she/ he will find it on the best medical practice management software installed on the computer; if not they will find out through other means.

If you work in the ward, make sure to stay on their good side – you never know when you’ll have to peruse the medical practice management software yourself.

Among the Administration…

All hospitals have directors, and all directors are fiercely guarded by their personal assistants or secretaries who will bar entry to all unless they are nice to them. While the director is the ultimate authority in a hospital, their PA’s will be the ones with the keys to the door and all the information you could ask for. Keep them on your side in case you need a sudden favour. The same goes with finding information in a hospital. While Patient Information is supposed to record every detail, more often than not there’s only one department in the building where nothing is allowed to fall through the cracks and that is Billing/ Accounts. If you need to know something, go sweet talk someone in the closed office.

Behind the Scenes…

After the power- players and the head nurses, we have those who work behind the scenes, such as cleaners and maintenance workers. While they are obligated to provide their services if asked, they are also fountains of information – the seamy kind – which you won’t get anywhere else. These people constitute the “invisible factor” in a hospital as they are not directly related to the business of healing the sick. So they get about with relative anonymity. This gives them a powerful weapon; every little secret might be overheard or discovered by the cleaners, maintenance crew and other workers in the hospital as no one expects them to be listening. Befriend a couple of them and listen as they reveal the innermost secrets of the hospital they work for.