Friday, April 13, 2012

Lost in Translation

  I floated over to the ED yesterday to get a quick orientation to the area since they are low on staff the ICU nurses will be lending a hand. They sent me over to fast track which is mostly handing out Tylenol, assessing sick babies and looking at weird rashes. 

  Since I was just getting my bearing they gave me the easiest of all things to do, discharge instructions. Basically take the printed papers, prescriptions and discharge papers to the patient run through them and walk them to the window. Easy right?

  One of the patients I was sent to discharge only spoke Spanish which is a bit of a problem since I speak about 5 words. But what the heck I'm always willing to give it my best shot. Armed with Spanish instructions I headed in and gave the fellow his papers. He glanced over the instructions and nodded in understanding. 


  Now for the prescriptions, I hand him those and tell him to take them to his " farmacia ". I must have the worst accent in the world because the fellow looked panicked and says " Por que Policia?"

  Poor fellow thought I was sending him and his scripts to the police. Yikes. I quickly cleared up that misunderstanding by explaining it was a script for his "medicina" He got it eventually, but it looked like he left in an awful hurry, not that I blame him.

Everyone had a good laugh at me that night.

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