making sure the pieces fit…
One of the many lasting lessons taken from my time working with Dr. Bob Sanet was understanding the power and importance of preparation. Prepare for your Vision Therapy sessions, prepare for testings and prepare for conferences. To the best of your ability, always know the patient’s situation before they walk in the door because “it doesn’t matter how well you think on your feet” Dr. Sanet would tell me, “it will never be better than knowing the material ahead of time”. A lesson which has proven true over and over and over again.
Yesterday morning I was going through my morning ritual of pulling charts for the patients to be seen, and reviewing activities from weeks past. My patient load included the perceptual testing of a young lady who had recently been in an accident, and suffered a TBI. In her case history, she detailed her numerous head and cervical spinal injuries, her time in a coma, and her therapeutic recoveries to date. Her road certainly has not been an easy one. As I was pulling materials for the ordered testing battery, I realized that my doctor had ordered the “Head Drop” test, which for those who are not familiar, is a way to check for a retained Moro reflex. The test involves laying the patient on their back, usually on the floor, while raising and lowering their head in a somewhat fast and slightly jerky motion.
Wait a minute. This girl has cervical spine concerns. Maybe jerking her head around is not a good idea. I found my doctor, and together we reviewed the case history, as well as my concerns with this test. My doctor concurred the test was a bad idea, and we scratched it long before our first patient of the morning arrived. Had I not read the case history beforehand, I may have attempted the test, possibly risking disastrous consequences.
Sharing this story is in NO way an effort to bad mouth my doctor or even to pat myself on the back. It was an honest mistake on someone else’s part that I was happy to catch before the patient was ever the wiser. I share it here as a simple as a reminder of two things:
– First – No matter your position in the office, we are all a team working towards a common goal.
– Second – it doesn’t matter how well you think on your feet, it will never be better than knowing the material ahead of time.
Score one for Dr. Sanet…