When we think of great nursing moments our thoughts are often about some great life saving event where a patient is near death and through extraordinary efforts, the patient survives. However, there are many great nursing moments that take place in very different circumstances.
An example of one of these very different circumstances occurred on January 26, when a patient was brought to the EC by law enforcement. The patient was traveling to another state when his car ran out of gas. Law enforcement was notified when passersby noticed the patient lighting paper on fire inside his vehicle; it was evident that he was psychotic and needed assistance. The patient was transferred to the Pavilion for appropriate medication stabilization and after a few days he was stabilized and able to communicate his needs.
Angela Boyd, assisting with his treatment, established a special connection with the patient and he shared with her that he needed to be discharged because his car would be towed at 5:00 pm and he could not afford to pay impound fees. He further explained that he was essentially homeless and had no family in the area. He did not have any money and was uncertain how he was going to be able to move his car from the side of the road. Although he was anxious about his situation, he allowed the staff to assess the situation, his condition, and help him find some resolutions to his problems. Angela knew that his condition and response to treatment were of great concern as well as all the ramifications of his financial and social problems. She advocated for the patient with the treatment team, law enforcement, and her nurse manager. She asked the unit social worker to contact out-of-state family members to assist the patient with some money to complete his journey to Florida. She worked with law enforcement to ensure that the vehicle would not be towed before 5:00 pm, pharmacy to obtain his medications, Central Transport to take the patient to his vehicle, and finally came up with a plan to get gas into the patient's vehicle.
Angela and her nurse manager, armed with a gas can, went to the location of the patient's vehicle. Things went smoothly, once they were able to figure out how to get the gas out of the can and into the car. When they returned to the facility, the other members of the treatment team had completed the discharge process and Central Transport delivered the patient to his vehicle to continue his journey.
Looking back, it isn't hard to imagine what would have happened to this patient had Angela Boyd not demonstrated flexibility, compassion, and commitment to her patients. She continues to be an amazing patient advocate. She exemplifies every attribute of what it means to be a DAISY nurse. We are privileged to have Angela Boyd, RN, as a part of the 6 East team and Medical Center, Navicent Health.