Tuesday, February 21, 2012

What do I do with all this STUFF!?

The first day we were home from the hospital, our home health company delivered our first month's worth of supplies.  To say it was overwhelming would have been the understatement of the year.  Now, I consider myself a fairly organized person, but this was just rediculous.  Not only did I have no idea where all of this would fit, I didn't even know what alot of this stuff was!  I brought all the boxes into Dominic's room, emptied them out, re-packed them, moved stuff around in them, moved the boxes themselves around, then left.  I was defeated, just like that.  Luckily for me, I had a nurse there that day who is known for her organizational skills.  She got me started, helped me sort through everything so I could then take over and put everything in a logical place.

The first thing you need to do is organize the supplies into categories that go together.  All tubing connectors go together.  All trachs and ties go together.  G-button supplies go together.  Once all of your stuff is placed in piles, according to function, it is easy to then place these piles in clear plastic bins and the label them.  I bought a label maker, but you could just as easily use paper and a marker.  I have avoided placing lots of unrelated stuff in a big drawer because that's how things get lost, dirty, and forgotten.  These bins can be stacked, or if you have a shelving system, they can be placed there.  I have mine on a metal shelf I bought at Wal Mart online (much cheaper than Container Store) tucked away in his closet.

Dominic has two monitors he is on while he sleeps as well as a nebulizer and a suction machine that ned to be handy at all times.  All this, as well as the meds, diapers, and nurse supplies (gloves, BP cuff, thermometer) goes on a shelf next to his crib.  Only the supplies we use regularly get put out.  Everything else is hidden in neat little bins in the closet or changing table.

All of his trach related supplies are in the top shelf of his changing table, so we can easily access them when we are caring for his trach.  I had old baskets I now use to store socks, hats and burp cloths in the cabinets of the changing table.

I have a calender on the wall made out of differnt colored scrap paper taped to form a blank calender template.  I placed this in a large picture frame so every month I can use a dry erase marker to write all doctors appointments and therapies on it so the nurses know ahead of time what to expect for the day.  I also have a white board to write notes on and important phone numbers for the nurses.  The nurses also have their own chair and table in the room so they have a neat place to put their notes and personal belongings.

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