No one ever explained to this husband the different code statuses of the DNR for his wife!
Some of the conversations our healthcare providers have with patients families are very tough but we go out of our way to be as caring and understanding as possible.
We had a patient that was in her mid-fifties who had very advanced MS and she was being transferred from another long-term care facility. More recently, she had a very complicated inpatient hospitalization due to developing a lung abscess/pneumonia r/t aspiration and the pt. had significantly declined. She was a FULL Code status.
We had a care conference with the husband and had a very long conversation about the patient’s condition and reviewed her code status. In Ohio, there are 3 main statuses, DNR-CC, DNR-CCA and Full Code. The husband stated that he had always struggled with feelings related to the patient’s code status as he didn’t want to feel like he had given up on her. We spent nearly 45 minutes with the spouse talking to him about the different code statuses and thoroughly explaining each one of them.
He was so grateful and thanked us for taking the time to do this. He stated “Nobody has ever taken the time to explain the difference to me”.
Just taking a little bit of extra time helped him make a decision that he was comfortable with and gave him a better understanding of what treatment could be provided for his loved one.