Surprising Hospital Risks For Young Cystic Fibrosis Patient

For most people, sharing a bathroom with a stranger represents an unpleasant thought. It’s just sort of uncomfortable. For 14-year-old Holly Aspinall, however, it’s a real danger. Holly suffers from cystic fibrosis, and as a result must be very cautious of bacteria. That’s why switching hospital wards has her so worried too. Keep reading to learn more about Holly’s story, or follow along at the original source here.
Holly spends a lot of her life being careful of bacteria. Simple infections and common colds are an inconvenience for most people, but for Holly they could mean hospitalization. This is because of the way cystic fibrosis affects the lungs and the mucus within our bodies. Infections can get especially nasty and have incredible staying power for cystic fibrosis patients. People with cystic fibrosis are also more likely to experience an infection.

Since infancy, Holly and her parents have been very careful in hospitals. Since Holly must make several trips per year, this becomes even more significant.

Cross-contamination represents a serious danger for her. As Holly’s mother describes, there’s a real fear of going to the hospital for treatment, and getting stuck there as a result of catching something from another patient.

And that doesn’t even cover the amount of time hospital visits take away from Holly’s school and social life. Nor does it account for the financial costs of her visits and treatments. Fortunately, Holly found a great hospital. Thanks to the high quality staff and facilities at Lady Cilento Children’s Hospital, Holly now visits the hospital only twice each year.

That, however, may soon come to an end. Holly’s doctors recently began discussing the idea of moving her to an adult cystic fibrosis ward. As Holly grows up the switch is bound to happen eventually, but that doesn’t make the transition any easier or safer.

Reports from another ward in Queensland have amplified the concerns of the Aspinall family. The family is hopeful for upgrades to the adult facility before Holly is scheduled to become a patient there. A former health minister, Cameron Dick, even described the adult ward in 2015 as posing a “risk” for cross-contamination. Despite this urgent warning, improvements have stalled since then.

Executives at Prince Charles Hospital continue to insist that it is an “internationally renowned” facility. Patient outcomes, they say, are comparable with the those in the rest of the country. Though the facility does not appear to live up to the high standards at Lady Cilento, Prince Charles Hospital executives insist that upgrades, such as en-suite bathrooms, are in the works.

Since Prince Charles Hospital represents the only adult ward for cystic fibrosis in the state, Holly’s family prays these improvements will be finished by the time she turns 18.

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