I was in the process of doing an EKG while Tracy, the new nurses practitioner, questioned the patient. The NP said, "Does your chest pain hurt more when you take a deep breath?"
"No," the pt. said. "But my doctor did put me on breathing treatments when I saw him last week."
"Why were you put on treatments?"
"Because the doctor said the treatment would help loosen up phlegm from the part of the lung the pneumonia was and help me feel better. But I don't notice a bit of difference and I've taken them now for two weeks."
"Well," the NP said, "That's not what treatments are for."
My face lit up. Tracy looked up at me and smiled. She worked with me years ago on nights. She learned well.
So, then I ended up back in the ER 30 minutes later with Tracy and the ER Doc standing next to us, "So, I just don't think when that guys doctor says Ventolin will thin secretions that that's the purpose of the medicine, don't you think?"
"Absolutely," I said. "The medicine doesn't even go to that part of the lung the pneumonia is. But, believe it or not, our protocol upstairs has us doing Ventolin every 6 hours on all pneumonia patients."
The old ER doc said, "I guess they just want to assume Ventolin cures everything and not just bronchospasm."
This RT was impressed. Wow! Not only is the new NP educated properly about Ventolin, so is the old ER Doc.
This is a step forward in the battle for bronchodilator reform.