The nursing staff on the Adolescent Unit recently cared for a patient with complex wounds. Her stay lasted for months. During that time, the nurses were diligent in performing care, ensured all necessary supplies were available and coordinated multiple services to have the right people in the right places at the right time. Early on in this patient's stay, it became clear that she would benefit from consistency in her caregivers. The nurses on the adolescent unit made sacrifices to ensure that she got the consistency she needed. To the nurses who cared for C, and for the nurses who cared for others instead of C, I offer praise and gratitude for your flexibility. The kindness shown to this patient is too numerous to count. One example of tremendous empathy was shared by C. A bedside dressing change resulted in a tearful patient. But I will never forget the heartfelt appreciation C expressed when she told me her nurses were crying too. C recognized and appreciated this compassion. I am thankful that these nurses cared for C. Her outcome could have been very different if they hadn't felt so empowered to practice with a questioning attitude and be quick to call about an assessment change, or a change in technique, or simply an update. Adolescent Unit nurses are a powerful example of the potential for a positive impact on a patient's life.
Our family came to CHOP emergency room from NY. N, 12 years old, has been suffering from cyclic vomiting syndrome for the almost 2.5-3 months; in spring-summer 2018 her symptoms worsened to the point that she couldn't any longer retain needed food or drink and was losing weight rapidly. N was admitted to the seashore house adolescent unit. We came to CHOP because we were out of options for treatments that could help at our local facilities. At CHOP, a team of experts was rapidly assembled and came up with a new diagnosis and a treatment for recovery. Rachel, Ana, Brittany, and Margot were the key nurses who took care of N during her 2 weeks stay. Their attention to N's symptoms, listening to family input was critical for establishing the diagnosis in communication with doctors and the plan for the care later in the process. They did not dismiss N's complaints about pain or discomfort, they worked tirelessly to find ways to help and relieve pain and looked for creative solutions (heat paces, yoga, massage, etc). We believe that their careful attention to patients and family input, communications with all doctors were the key for finding a path forward to N's recovery. All medications were ordered and made available to N in a short time, there were no moments of needs being ignored. They were like another family for her when parents had to step out to take care of work and N's sister. They really bring not just medical but personal, humor love and compassion to care, which is so critical working with kids, vulnerable and dependent on them.