Amalia Belcher
May 2016
Digestive Health
University of Virginia Health System
United States




I have Crohn's Disease and was admitted to the hospital for severe malnutrition. I also suffer from anxiety due to my disease. I actually have an emotional support dog to help me with my anxiety and she means the world to me! She goes everywhere with me, so just having to leave her to come to the hospital already caused me great anxiety.
Upon being admitted I had to have a tube placed in my stomach for tube feeds via my nose. This was an extremely painful ordeal for me and it caused my anxiety to reach an all-time high. During a severe anxiety attack my tube fell out of my nose and had to be replaced with a much bigger tube in the room and under no sedation. Amelia was my nurse through all this and she was the one who had to place the feeding tube for the 2nd time. This process was one of the most traumatic things I have ever been through and my anxiety continued to be unbearable until the tube was eventually removed.
Amelia had to physically place my PEG tube the second time while I was struggling with anxiety and her patience and knowledge was the best. She explained everything to me first and coached me through it while she was placing it. Her gentle way is like no other and her professionalism is top notch! She not only made me feel comfortable but made my family feel comfortable because of her knowledge and willingness to explain everything that was going on in a way we could understand.
I don't believe I would have been able to do it with anyone else! And what she did for me was way above and beyond in my opinion, she gave me the greatest gift, she got everything squared away for my husband to bring my precious Lola into the hospital for a visit! We didn't even know that was a possibility and words can't express how much this helped me and the fact that she was thoughtful enough to really want to figure out a way to make me feel better and make this whole ordeal easier on me so I would be able to be at peace and focus on getting well blew my mind! Having my sweet Lola (my emotional support dog) come for a visit hit the spot! Not only that but her patience through all of my struggles was amazing and she was able to bring a calm to me and help me fight through this tough time until I had a PeG tube placed in my stomach.
Amalia was there to teach me how to use my PEG and be comfortable with this new part of my life. She had a way of bringing a positive vibe with her when she entered the room and her gentle care was very comforting to a patient who couldn't have been further from comfortable, mentally or physically. Her knowledge and work ethic was incredible and she had a great sense of urgency to take care of her patients. She was so kind to not only me but my entire family and she was excellent and explaining things to my family so that they understood every process I had to face.
I am forever grateful for everything Amalia did for me and I feel blessed to have had her for my nurse. I will always remember her smile and her positivity she brought to me during one of my lowest times. She will forever have a very special place in my heart.