Recently, we had a homeless patient admitted to our unit. He had scabies and lice. The admitting nurse, while organizing his care needs, ended up having to dispose of his belongings because they were filthy and she wanted to ensure that the lice and scabies were gone. She talked with the patient about this and he completely understood. Other staff members were aware that all this man's clothing was gone, so several people began bringing clothes to replace them. One nurse even brought in a backpack so he could carry all his stuff when he was discharged to a shelter.
Several months ago with had a really difficult patient event on 5ems. We had admitted a pregnant sickle cell patient for sickle cell crisis. As time progressed her condition worsened and the staff moved into crisis mode. The patient was to be transferred to ICU, but she continued to deteriorate and eventually a C-Section was done in the room with a resuscitative effort for the baby. The patient was stabilized enough to move to the ICU, but on arrival coded again and the nurses who accompanied her continued to provide support in the ICU setting. Ultimately the patient and baby were both lost. While the outcome was not as we would have liked, when I came in to talk with the staff, I found that several staff from 7E came down to support the patient and fellow staff members on 5EMS during this lengthy event. The support that this group has for their patients and each other is amazing. This is just one example, but events occur regularly where the staff members of 7E and 5EMS respond to the other unit to provide whatever is needed.
We have just implemented what we are calling our innovative team model on our unit. The staff have embraced the concept and working through all the bumps. Even as early as the first week, staff members verbalized how they can see how this will improve patient care. The UPC is even calling the staff "pioneers of change" because of all the initiatives we are involved in.
One of the newly appointed team leaders told me the other day, that as a they were in the middle of a code, she looked up and saw the team leader for the other side of 7 as well as from 5E outside assisting with the code and making sure that the other patients on the unit were receiving the care they needed.
In the last two weeks, I have had 2 different nursing instructors come up to me and share how incredibly accommodating the staff is to their students. The instructor for the MCON students said that the nurses seek the students out when a procedure is being done so they can observe or participate to increase the learning. The instructor indicated that this is not how the students are frequently received in other places in the building. The nurses understand the importance of the student's learning and provide every opportunity possible.
In conclusion, I want to say what a remarkable group of people the staff members of 7E/5EMS are. They are supportive of our patients and they always have each other's back. Even though the team has naturally had little disagreements and bumps in the road now and again, at the end of the shift: THEY ARE FAMILY.