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Love on hospital walls

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In a New York Times posting, Mikkael A. Sekeres, M.D., writes about the love  that he sees in the pictures that patients and their families put on many hospital-room walls at the Cleveland Clinic, where he heads the leukemia program.

“I admire the creativity, the support, the love that I see on the walls of these rooms. I get to appreciate my patients from the time before they were sick and I can also see what they are trying to return to. I also breathe a sigh of relief that, when these patients are discharged from the hospital, they will be cared for.

“The displays increase manifold with approaching holidays, as families experience the loss of their loved one’s presence so much more acutely, and home invades the hospital, trying to bring them back.”


“I worry about the patients whose walls are bare, though. These are the people who may not have a ride to the outpatient appointments and treatments that are so necessary for their survival, and who won’t have a partner at home who can call the ambulance when they spike a fever. We spend extra time with them on discharge planning, involving our social work team, to help ensure they are as safe as possible when they leave.”

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