Ana was my mother’s nurse several times while my mom was in hospice care in Ana’s Unit. She took superb care of all my mother’s needs, while at the same time serving as a calming influence for my brother and me (pretty ironic considering that Ana is younger than three of my four children). Most significantly, Ana knew how important it was for me to be holding my mom’s hand at the moment of her death, and she made every effort to make sure that happened. The evening before my mom passed, it seemed clear that she would probably not make it through the night. My brother and I were exhausted from our around-the-clock vigil at my mom’s bedside, so Ana encouraged me to try to sleep on the couch in the room. I was afraid to let go of my mom’s hand for even a few minutes for fear that I might miss the moment of her death, so Ana promised to check on her frequently during the night and let us know if anything changed. This allowed me to sleep fairly soundly for several hours. As morning approached, I awoke to see Ana adjusting my mom’s IV, and she let us know that the end seemed near. She stayed with us as my mom drew her last breath at 6:19 a.m. She then very competently took care of all the logistical details surrounding a patient’s death. Ana’s calm and reassuring demeanor made me think that she had a lot of experience dealing with end-of-life matters. It was only later that I learned that this was only the second death that Ana had been present for. Also my brother told me that he did not sleep quite as soundly as I had, and that he had noticed that Ana was true to her word and checked on my mom’s breathing every twenty minutes or so throughout the night.
We appreciated her support during a very difficult time, and want to let your hospital know what a wonderful asset Ana is to your nursing staff. I sincerely hope that you honor Anastasia with the DAISY Award --- a recognition she truly deserves.