Saturday, February 04, 2006


It's everywhere.

I can't believe the ubiquity of television, even in a hospital. It's bad enough that it has to be on in the nurses' lounge so often - I can hear it when I'm trying to write at the nurses' station -but they don't turn it off when they leave the lounge. It's left on, to provide a constant background accompaniment or pacifier, or something. Parents of the babies can hear it, which contributes not at all to a professional atmosphere in what is supposed to be an intensive care unit. People must leave it on constantly in their homes, and be so used to it they do the same thing at work.

But the place it drives me craziest is in the delivery room. The TV's there just stay on and on, through labor, delivery, and recovery. You would think they might get turned off when it's time to push, but no, again they are accepted as such a constant, normal part of life that no one besides me seems to even realize that turning the TV off might be the appropriate thing to do. And it's often the seamiest shows, too. I don't know how many deliveries I've been to where shows like "Cheaters" and "Elimidate" helped usher a new life into the world. I"m not one who thinks every delivery has to be the most absolutely special event in the world, but it is a significant and emotional happening for most people. Do you really want Jerry Springer at your baby's delivery?


Blogger Kim said...

Perhaps you can suggest to one of the nurses to turn the TV off, or just reach up and do it when labor gets to a certain point. Those going through the labor probably don't even notice and even if someone says something, you can talk about needing a quiet environment for the comfort of the patient - mom and baby.

I agree, it is inappropriate....

3:09 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am seeing this a bit late since I am reading the archives, but I wanted the TV on as I gave birth (I think it was a baseball game or something).

The TV when off was an effective mirror and I just didn't want a view of what was going on. A cabinet for the TV would have been great, but the blank screen was really bothering me.

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