Why do medical pros insist on leaving voicemails for HOH patients?

Posted by ltecato @ltecato, Aug 16 10:56pm

Leaving a voice message for a patient who is deaf or hard of hearing makes as much sense as using freeway billboards to convey information for people who are blind.

Why is it so hard for trained medical workers to grasp the concept that text messages or emails would work a great deal better for patients who are hard of hearing?

Liked by sparklegram

While email is not a secure form of communication that complies with HIPAA, many medical professionals have set up secure portals for text communication. I love that I can communicate with my doctor, her admin and other health care practitioners at the practice through the patient portal. I just renewed a prescription without picking up the phone with the admin, doctor or pharmacist. It will be delivered by end of day today. I have the same service with specialists at my hospital.

Have you asked your providers if they have a patient portal option?

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@colleenyoung

While email is not a secure form of communication that complies with HIPAA, many medical professionals have set up secure portals for text communication. I love that I can communicate with my doctor, her admin and other health care practitioners at the practice through the patient portal. I just renewed a prescription without picking up the phone with the admin, doctor or pharmacist. It will be delivered by end of day today. I have the same service with specialists at my hospital.

Have you asked your providers if they have a patient portal option?

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I know “email is not secure” is the excuse for maintaining the status quo, but voicemail is not 100 percent private either. Other people can overhear the messages, especially if you are like me and prefer to use the speaker phone feature. At least half the time I get voicemail, I have to get another person with better hearing to fill in the gaps and tell me what I have missed.

That is not acceptable. The DOJ has ruled — if I am correctly interpreting the information on their website — that the police or jails cannot force ASL users to have a relative or friend on hand to do ASL interpretation. They have to provide someone who is trained for the job. By the same token, medical providers should not be expecting patients to have any kind of “buddy system” where a friend or family member does their listening for them.

As far as patient portals are concerned, no one at PIH Downey has informed me of that option. I really doubt PIH has evolved that far, because they can’t even be bothered to post signs to tell patients or visitors who are deaf/HOH what they should do if they are having problems with accessibility.

Last year I was hospitalized for an emergency at PIH Downey when my hearing aid battery died. Hospital would not provide a replacement or even allow me to walk across a parking lot to buy a pack from the pharmacy next door. Nurse ended up calling my bedridden 79-year-old lung cancer patient mother and guilt-tripping her into getting an Uber and bringing batteries from home.

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I remember … I know it's been awhile since I was writing. I have been reading all of the messages and I couldn't resist writing in between my sewing these clear masks. This service as an example for others of the different projects and opportunities to reach out to others in addition to helping others see that all is not lost in the journey of finding our way to better hearing health. I will keep an eye out for anyone looking for information here.

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Just got a voice call from doctor’s office—yes they know I am deaf and yes I have asked them more than once not to communicate by voice phone— that coincided with a noisy garbage truck picking up outside the front door. I could not make out a single word. It just so happened my wife had just gotten out of bed and was able to take the phone.

Medical professionals seem to be completely determined to ignore the Americans with Disabilities Act. Asking nicely for accommodations does not appear to be effective.

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I think the medical professionals are generally uneducated about working with hearing loss patients. With the emphasis on phone and video appointments now rather than in person it is very difficult. Mine have to be phone appointments because I cannot hear on the computer. I always tell the doctor that I have a caption phone and that they still need to speak slowly and clearly as the phone often does not translate accurately. Conversation starts out well but then most forget and start talking rapidly. I have also been surprised at how many are unfamiliar with caption phones and how they work but then I remember that before my hearing loss I had no idea what a caption phone was ….. had no reason to know.

I have learned from participating in this group that the onus is on us… we who have hearing loss have to educate others and keep coming back until they get it. Thanks to the group I have become much more open about sharing my hearing loss problems.

Now in writing this I remember at times having a sense of shame about my hearing loss, almost as if it were somehow my fault and I should be apologetic about it. Anyone else ever felt/feel that way?

Liked by imallears, barbb, ltecato

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@judyca7

I think the medical professionals are generally uneducated about working with hearing loss patients. With the emphasis on phone and video appointments now rather than in person it is very difficult. Mine have to be phone appointments because I cannot hear on the computer. I always tell the doctor that I have a caption phone and that they still need to speak slowly and clearly as the phone often does not translate accurately. Conversation starts out well but then most forget and start talking rapidly. I have also been surprised at how many are unfamiliar with caption phones and how they work but then I remember that before my hearing loss I had no idea what a caption phone was ….. had no reason to know.

I have learned from participating in this group that the onus is on us… we who have hearing loss have to educate others and keep coming back until they get it. Thanks to the group I have become much more open about sharing my hearing loss problems.

Now in writing this I remember at times having a sense of shame about my hearing loss, almost as if it were somehow my fault and I should be apologetic about it. Anyone else ever felt/feel that way?

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@judyca7 I well remember feeling shame about my hearing loss. I resisted getting hearing aids for over a decade. When I got them, I did everything possible to hide them. That was nearly 4 decades ago. There were no support groups. No one understood how I felt, and my feelings were minimized if I tried to express them. Thankfully, my husband, daughter and family did their best to understand. Now, 40 years later, there are so many improvements in hearing technology, BUT we now see an industry that is marketing denial. They constantly tell us that their products are invisible or so small no one will know you're wearing them. That tells a lot of people that hearing loss is shameful and should be hidden. How strange this is at a time when we see so many people with devices hanging in their ears to broadcast on TV, listen to music while walking, etc. Somehow we have to change these negative attitudes. So glad you are able to look at your hearing loss differently now. It helps so much to meet and talk to other people who share similar experiences. Thank you for sharing.

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@ltecato

I have done one-person picketing in six cities in California, outside DMV offices, a courthouse. I also use my Twitter account sometimes. I posted this yesterday (warning, Tweet includes the F word).

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I just followed you on Twitter. I'm @mediachick there, too.

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@mediachick

I just followed you on Twitter. I'm @mediachick there, too.

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Thanks!

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Both yesterday and today the PIH Health hospital in Downey, California, has left voicemail messages for me despite the fact that I have repeatedly told them I am deaf/HOH and asked for text or email communication as an accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act. I am heading over to picket in front of the hospital. I don’t expect this to do any good. The hospital industry seems to know that it can get away with using the ADA as toilet paper.

Liked by Michelle

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@ltecato

Both yesterday and today the PIH Health hospital in Downey, California, has left voicemail messages for me despite the fact that I have repeatedly told them I am deaf/HOH and asked for text or email communication as an accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act. I am heading over to picket in front of the hospital. I don’t expect this to do any good. The hospital industry seems to know that it can get away with using the ADA as toilet paper.

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I do know how you feel. I am low vision so I ask them to call me to take care of business. But all they do is send me gmails on the internet. Do we know if they truly care? "The Shadow Knows". It is not just you or I. Whatever their boss tells them to do to handle business is the way it goes. Please do not take this seriously and upset yourself. Life is "Just a bowl of cherries". some sweet and some not. Take care, Peach

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@peach414144

I do know how you feel. I am low vision so I ask them to call me to take care of business. But all they do is send me gmails on the internet. Do we know if they truly care? "The Shadow Knows". It is not just you or I. Whatever their boss tells them to do to handle business is the way it goes. Please do not take this seriously and upset yourself. Life is "Just a bowl of cherries". some sweet and some not. Take care, Peach

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Forgot: I am also registered with the ADA American Disabilities Act. Peach

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@ltecato

Both yesterday and today the PIH Health hospital in Downey, California, has left voicemail messages for me despite the fact that I have repeatedly told them I am deaf/HOH and asked for text or email communication as an accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act. I am heading over to picket in front of the hospital. I don’t expect this to do any good. The hospital industry seems to know that it can get away with using the ADA as toilet paper.

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@HLAA_CA #deaf #hoh How about learning who is in charge of communication being done the way it is and then communicating with that person regarding the problem?

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So far I have spoken to at least three management-level nurses at PIH. No progress.

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I will again be picketing outside PIH Downey. Temperature is expected to hit 105 F today. Bringing water bottles, sunscreen, beach chair and umbrella.

Liked by Michelle

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@ltecato

I will again be picketing outside PIH Downey. Temperature is expected to hit 105 F today. Bringing water bottles, sunscreen, beach chair and umbrella.

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I shared your tweet and posted on my FB page for anyone in the Downey, CA area to go, and support you.

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