South Florida Hospital News
Sunday August 25, 2019
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May 2008 - Volume 4 - Issue 11

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Nurses: Making a Difference Every Day

There are many diverse, noteworthy and heartfelt ways that nurses make a difference for their patients and families every day. Often, these differences go unnoticed and many times forgotten. I receive many notes from our patients and their families, and generally I take a moment, each time, to reflect upon the contents and how it relates to my personal passion for being a nurse. Additionally, I am most interested in hearing what our patients say about the care they receive at our hospital. Today, I received one that exemplifies the fact that nurses really do make a difference. I find that it is a good thing to reflect on what nurses do, and it is really a great thing when a patient or family member reflects on what we do. I urge you to read the note from a patientís significant other thanking me for the wonderful care my staff gave to her husband. What she says about nurses is what I want to share. Names have been changed to preserve any personal information, but the content itself is clear, profound and potent. The letter reads as follows:

"Upon arrival to your hospital I discovered that Michael was in a comatose state but still hanging on with life support. I want to express my ultimate gratitude and appreciation to your entire staff, both professional and nonprofessional, who gave of their time. On an intellectual level I could understand what was happening, but on an emotional level I hoped we would find the slightest thread of life.

Iíve been to many hospitals in my life and never have I seen the dedication and devotion as demonstrated by your staff. They were kind, understanding, and most compassionate which gave me great comfort at such a dire time in my life. The doctor talked to us tenderly discussing the reality of Michaelís condition and he personally contacted my out of town son to discuss his fatherís condition. The nurses on the floor were right there, all of the time. They explained procedures and looked after him and me while at the same time keeping an infectious smile on their faces. Upon Michaelís transfer to the Intensive Car Unit, the nurse checked him in, performed many procedures and did so with the most compassionate approach I have ever seen. Another nurse came specifically to check on me all day long to ensure that my needs were being met and my emotions were being recognized and supported. She did so all the while attempting to provide me with cheer and a slight ray of hope and sunshine. Even when I went to the desk, the nurses were so accommodating, sweet and understanding.

Sad to say, Michael went to his Maker at 3am on Monday. However devastating and distraught his demise has been, I can never forget the staff at Columbia Hospital, nor can I thank them enough for all of their care and assistance. Please share this note with them and be sure to note their dossier accordingly for they truly deserve the accolades".

Enough said. Nurses really do make a difference, every patient, every family, every day.

V. Lynn Waters, Chief Nursing Officer, Columbia Hospital, can be reached at (561) 863-3810.
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