Aaron Agrusa
November 2017
Oncology Unit
Mercy Health Saint Mary's
Grand Rapids
United States




A patient from the senior adult unit was agitated and looking for a way to "leave the hospital". This patient eloped from the third floor, got on the elevator and went up to the 4th floor. The patient was upset and confused. As the patient was walking around on the 4th floor looking for the door out, Aaron kindly and calmly approached the patient and introduced himself. Aaron continued to walk with the patient around the 4th floor as the patient expressed his concerns about being in the hospital. Aaron established a compassionate rapport with the patient as the two were talking and walking, Aaron escorted the patient back to his room in the senior adult unit. the patient was returned to his unit safely and the elopement code was canceled. Aaron sat with the patient for nearly twenty minutes to make sure the patient felt safe. Aaron asked the patient "what can I communicate to the doctor for you?"
By using compassion and understanding, Aaron was able to de-escalate the situation and form a trusting relationship with this vulnerable patient. Aaron later used his break time to check on the patient. Aaron got a snack for the patient and sat with him to just talk. This patient was kept safe and the patient now refers to Aaron as "my friend from upstairs".