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Patient Needs

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Patient Needs

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Patient Needs

A patient’s safety is a nurse's greatest and most important responsibility. A nurse must ensure that all actions to prevent harm are practiced. Some of the patient safety issues surrounding nursing fundamentals involve latex allergies and fall prevention. Latex reactions can be avoided by being aware of the risk factors. These risk factors include food allergies to bananas, papaya, and kiwi fruit, as well as people with asthma, spina bifida, or a history of multiple surgical procedures. To ensure patient safety around falls, fall prevention strategies should be utilized. These include having the call bell within reach, eliminating physical hazards, leaving items within reach, leaving the patient bed in a low position, and putting side rails up.
Allergy to Banana, Papaya, Chestnuts and Kiwi
Allergy-alligator with Banana, Papaya, Chestnuts and Kiwi

Patients who have food allergies specifically to these fruits are more likely to have a latex allergy. When caring for these patients it is important to avoid the use of items containing latex. Frequently used latex items include gloves, urinary catheters, tourniquets, and IV tubing. It is important to read supply packages to ensure they do not contain latex prior to use.


Patients with asthma are at higher risk of having a latex allergy. Nurses should avoid all latex items including the powder found in latex gloves when caring for these patients.

Spina Bifida

Patients with spina bifida are included in the population that are at an increased risk for latex allergies.

History of Multiple Surgical Procedures
History-book of Multiple Surgical Procedures

Patients who have had multiple surgical procedures with frequent recurrent exposure to latex items can develop latex sensitivities.

Call Light within Reach
Reaching for Call Light

Leaving the call light or call bell within reach provides easy and prompt access for the patient when they require assistance. It is also important to instruct the patient on how and when to use the call bell. Try to answer call bells promptly to prevent patient injuries and incase of a fall or emergency.

Eliminate Physical Hazards
Discarding Physical Hazards

It is important to remove all physical hazards in the room including clutter, wet floors, and unneeded furniture to allow for easier patient mobility. These barriers can prevent a patient's access to the bathroom, commode, or ability to leave their room, as well as increase the risk of a fall.

Leave Items within Reach
Items within Reach

Leaving items within reach of a patient provides them access to their belongings without having to lean out of reach for items and fall. Leaving water, tissues, bedpan/urinal within a patient’s reach allows for independence and easy access.

Bed in Low Position
Low Bed

Placing the bed in a low position not only provides a shorter distance from the floor, incase of a fall, it also gives the patient stability when standing up off the bed. If the bed is in a high position, the patient's feet may not be able to touch the floor properly which could lead to a fall.

Side Rails Up
Side Rails Up

Side rails can act as a safety device in health care facilities and in the home to prevent falls. The rails can be raised at the patients request, but the patient must be able to raise and lower the side rails without help. The side rails should not act as a restrictive restraint.

Patient Safety
Patient with Safety-shield

For questions regarding the safety of patients remember the importance of hand hygiene, call bells, bed positioning, side rails, aseptics, standard precautions and other precautions, triage, and emergency responses.

Health Promotion and Maintenance
Health Promoter and Maintenance-man

For questions regarding promoting and maintaining health focus on the prevention and early detection of health problems, and with patient teaching remember that the first priority is the patient’s willingness and desire to learn.

Psychosocial Integrity
Sicko-social-book and Integra

In this patient need section, questions will test on promoting the emotional, mental and social well-being of a patient. Promoting the patient’s ability to cope and problem-solve with illness, stress and disability using therapeutic communication techniques is important to remember.


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