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Anniversary of John McClearys death

January 11th, 2010 Leave a comment Go to comments

dozen-yellow-rosesJanuary 9 was the anniversary of my father, John McCleary’s death.  A lot of water has passed under the bridge since then.  Nothing that has happened or been accomplished with MRSA prevention will bring him back, but my part of the work was all done in Dad’s honor.

The very week of this anniversary, Maine hospitals began screening high risk patients for MRSA.  This is a huge step in the right direction.   I have spoken with several nurses from different parts of the State, but the one I was happiest to hear from was a nurse from Dad’s hometown.  I took my mother out for lunch at a local restaurant, and we ran into an old friend who is a nurse and she cared for Dad.  She said the community hospital is screening ALL admissions.  They are not obligated to do that but it is the simpler and actually more comprehensive  approach to MRSA screening than just high risk screening.  MRSA does not descriminate by age, enthnicity, race, etc.  It can and does effect all.   So, this news was great.  Further comment from this nurse was “and it is about time!”

Other big strides in MRSA prevention have been made in Maine hospitals.  I hope the quality of their programs is consistant because before last year, I know it was not.  And, my original legislative proposal to standardize MRSA prevention policy all over the State (to reflect the steps of Active Detection and Isolation) was characterized as “cumbersome and prescriptive”.  Actually it was 4 basic steps and they work  really well when done altogether.  So, that standard and mandate in all hospitals would have sealed the success of prevention for all Maine Hospitals.  Maine Hospitals still have discretion in the use of the weak CDC recommendations when they write their policies. They basically can pick and choose and they might not always choose the best parts of the CDC recommendations.  It’s pretty hard anyway considering they are ineffective (in their current order)  and a couple hundred pages long.

But, to keep this entry positive and upbeat…..Maine hospitals have progressed in their infection control approaches and policies. 

The reason I am so happy about Dad’s hospital is that my mother still lives in that community and depends on that facility for her care.   The nurses and doctors there are awesome, but last year, their MRSA  detection and prevention policy was horrid and inconsistant.  I am now more confident in their approach to MRSA prevention.

I brought my mother beautiful yellow roses (a favorite of both hers and Dad’s) the day of the anniversary of Dad’s death.  But, more importantly, I hopefully brought her a safer hospital.

  1. January 11th, 2010 at 22:21 | #1

    Kathy, my thoughts are with you and your mom and my heart cries with yours. I hope your day was filled with good memories of days gone by with your dad. With both of our dads taken from us by this deadly infection all that we have left are our memories and as one of the many songs that my dad loved goes, “oh no they can’t take that away me”!
    We and so many others are determined Kathy… we are going to show the world our dads did not die in vain….instead thru us their deaths were meant to change what is so drastically wrong with our hospitals today and know that smile planted firmly on your dads face is there to tell the world how proud he is that you are part of our quest to save lives.
    With Warm Regards
    Julia Nora Pilas

  2. Lori Nerbonne
    March 4th, 2010 at 20:11 | #2


    I just visited your site and noticed the beautiful yellow roses….you’re obviously a special daughter to both your mom and dad.

    Thinking of you and hoping you’re getting some R&R,


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