I was admitted to the hospital on Monday, December 31, New Year’s Eve. It was an emergency, and all began when my doctor’s professional assistant agreed to see me without an appointment and after everyone else had gone home. She took one look, took a culture and sent me directly to the hospital.

Now, a week later we are still working on taking care of the emergency that sent me to the hospital. It will be a long haul.

I have never been in the hospital for five days. I have never been in the hospital on a holiday. I have never been in the hospital where caregivers were racing against the clock trying to determine exactly what had attacked my body, weeks after surgery, and then figure out how to get rid of it.

The nurses and patient care specialists taught me more than I expected. There is a difference between patient care and caring for patients.

TAKING CARE OF PATIENTS emphasizes objective, professional care, such as the medical and psychological aspects of nursing. CARING FOR PATIENTS, on the other hand, is a humanistic way of interacting with patients that demonstrates sincere care and concern for patients simply because they are human beings.

If any of this interests you, I urge you to read: Nurses’ Compassionate Care Affects Patient Outcomes.I found many quotes: Here is one:

“Patients want to feel cared for and listened to and [whether they feel that way] is based on the actions of the nurses,” said Kelly Hancock, RN, MSN, NE-BC, chief nursing officer at Cleveland Clinic in Ohio. “It begins with nurses providing compassionate, patient-centered care.”

The nurses and the patient care team took care of me 24/7. More importantly, they each cared for me. I could see it in their eyes.

Are you taking care of your clients, or caring for your clients? Hopefully, you are doing both.