From Jordan: Human Caring at the Patient Bedside
February 14, 2014
I’m in Aqaba, Jordan this week, at the second annual conference of Middle Eastern Nurses and Partners Uniting in Human Caring. Coming to the Middle East is a step into a different reality, revealing my own inability to understand the continuing conflicts beneath the surface that plague this part of the world.
Jordan is a neutral country, welcoming of everyone who enters its borders. It is the only country accepts Palestinians without passports (which none of them have). It is now housing over one million refugees from Egypt, Syria, and other neighboring countries.
Jordan does not have oil. Its economic structure is based on far more real and human factors — businesses, travelers, tourists.
This conference can happen only because Jordan is neutral amidst chaotic hostilities. There are many more nurses from both Israel and Jordan and the Palestinian Territories, plus Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the United States this year.
The focus is healing, caring for the ill, dealing with ethical issues that confront nurses daily, and hoping for human caring to be the key to reclaiming our humanity.
We are hopeful to bring The C.A.R.E. Channel to Israel, including East Jerusalem — if only to bring peace at the bedside. The universal nature of the human condition is such that music and nature heals us at our core, long before culture, family, politics, and generations of origin separate us.
The diversity of patients and staff in our own healthcare system spans the globe. Broadcast in more than 750 U.S. hospitals, The C.A.R.E. Channel touches many different types of people, so we are confident it will be effective in other countries as well.
HCAHPS does not exist in the Middle East. Jordan and Israel have universal healthcare. Everyone who is a citizen has health insurance through a complex public healthcare system that, while not perfect, does not leave the ill on the outside of an emergency room door.
Rather, the equanimity among all who live in the region is best experienced in the hospitals, where nurses and doctors take care of their patients as patients, not as Israelies, Palestinians, Syrians, or anyone else.
There is so much to learn and appreciate, and I am grateful to be here. Tomorrow, Dr. Jean Watson of the Watson Caring Science Institute and I are speaking about the Human Caring Alliance and whole system transformation. To find out more, watch a free webcast on this topic.
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