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For what it's worth, a couple days ago my sister got worried because Mom called her and reported having a lot of diarrhea and vomiting. My wife went to the hospital to check but was not allowed to go past the lobby. There was a sign on the door that said, "Stop! No visitors!" My wife was able to speak to a nurse and make sure that a doctor was monitoring the situation. Last we heard, Mom was doing better.

If I may make a very mundane suggestion, it would be that hospitals should try to make sure that patients can charge their cellphones and any devices that can connect with whatever WiFi is available. In my recent experience I have noticed that some hospitals don't seem to care if patients can do this, and it can make a patient feel quite isolated and helpless if they cannot communicate with family or other acquaintances. I know most facilities have landline phones in their rooms, but in this day and age, who has memorized more than one or two important phone numbers?

I was hospitalized last April and not only did my cellphone battery go dead but the battery in my hearing aid died and I did not have a replacement. The hospital had no devices to charge the phone, and it refused to supply me with a new hearing aid battery or allow me to buy a new pack from the pharmacy next door. This put me in a situation where I was not only deaf but I could not communicate with my family to ask one of them to bring me a hearing aid battery and phone charger. Luckily, when I was in the emergency room waiting to be admitted I asked a nurse for a pen and paper so I could write down family phone numbers before my phone battery was exhausted. A nurse called my mother — the same one who is now hospitalized — and got her to bring me a charger and pack of batteries. My mom can barely walk 30 feet on a good day, and the hospital more or less shamed her into getting a Lyft and bringing me these essential items in person.

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Replies to "For what it's worth, a couple days ago my sister got worried because Mom called her..."

I'm so sorry to hear of the lack of compassion and help from the hospital staff, @ltecato. It is hard to believe that this could happen in a health care facility. But I suppose not all facilities are in tune with patient care and comfort. Have you considered contacting the hospital's department of Patient Experience (the name might be a bit different at your hospital) and letting them know of these concerns?

@itecato, such as good reminder to help reduce isolation. Many (most?) hospitals now have free WiFi connection thank goodness. That was not always the case. Connection is so important and in today’s world we have more tools that ever thanks to technology. But we are at the mercy of electricity and batteries. Your advice about chargers and hearing aid batteries was so appreciated that @sueinmn shared your advice in another discussion here:

– Supporting those in hospital/care facilities with visitor restrictions https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/supporting-those-in-hospitalcare-facilities-with-visitor-restrictions/

@danab often gives the advice to invest in an extra long charge cord since outlets in hospital and care rooms are never conveniently located.

How is your mom doing?

@ltecato I like your suggestion of ensuring there are chargers for cellphones etc. that the patients may be using. Many of us are so dependent upon on our phones to keep in contact with those that are closest to us. It may also be something to think about donating to local facilities!