Thursday, July 16, 2020

By Francie Williamson | Department of Psychiatry | 7-6-2020

Many patients have an expectation that the appropriate hair and skin care products will be provided for them when they are staying at the hospital.

But that’s not the case for everyone, as Jodi Tate, MD, clinical professor of psychiatry, learned after a Black patient commented that they wished they had a comb for their hair while staying in the Crisis Stabilization Unit (CSU) at University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics.

Tate decided to stock the CSU with those items, but was still concerned that those items weren’t available to every person of color staying at UI Hospitals and Clinics. To change that, she teamed up last year with Nkanyezi Ferguson, MD, clinical assistant professor of dermatology who runs an ethnic skin care clinic, as well as Hospital Chief of Staff Marta Van Beek, MD; John Wagner, MA, RN-BC, director of nursing services for behavioral health,Trudy Laffoon, MA, RN-BC, nurse manager in dermatology, Nicholas Poch, DNP, NPL, DON, Quality Nursing Practice Leader and Poorani Sekar, MD, clinical assistant professor and infectious disease specialist, and got input from about 100 people working across the hospital system.

“John Wagner called all over the US to see what other hospitals were doing or to see if we could find a vendor that could supply all these things. We couldn’t find any hospitals in US that supply these things to patients,” Tate says. “Essentially people had to bring their own and people just assumed there was nothing wrong with that.”

Ferguson says she thinks hospitals don’t provide such products due to a lack of awareness.

Click here to read the full article by UI’s Department of Psychiatry

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