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Showing posts from February, 2024

Lost Voices: Where to find Spanish Speakers in a Hospital

Mateo had a tonsillectomy and adenoidectomy on Wednesday at Boston Children's Hospital in Waltham. We made this decision after much deliberation, but for our poor four-year-old who had never slept through the night due to his enlarged tonsils, we hoped the surgery would greatly improve his quality of life.  While he played with a Mario Donkey Kong toy set, we spoke with multiple staff people about his imminent procedure. As the unofficial representative of our family in these situations, I did most of the talking and consent-form signing, but Francisco was there supporting both Mateo and me.  We discussed the procedure with the preoperative holding nurse and she explained that when it was time for the surgery, Mateo would be wheeled away into the operating room where he would receive anesthesia by mask and then have his IV put in. I thought he might be nervous in the operating room without us, so I asked the nurse if there were any Spanish-speaking members of the surgical team. I t