Recently my daughter was admitted to the Vacavalley ICU with an episode of diabetic ketoacidosis. My 26-year-old daughter was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes here at NorthBay in 1995. In that time, she has done well managing her diabetes with only one other hospitalization.
We first met Christine Aye the first day of the hospitalization. Immediately upon transfer from the ED to the ICU, we were greeted by Christine who would be our PM shift nurse in the ICU for the next 3 days. We immediately knew that Christine was very friendly, knowledgeable, and able to explain everything we needed to know is a way we were able to understand. K was very sick and understandably, not in the best of moods. Being in the ICU, K needed frequent finger sticks to check her blood sugars. Christine tried her best to remove the routine monotony of a simple blood test by making a game out of the numbers. "The Price Is Right!" We would all choose what we thought would be the closest reading, and the closest guess won that round. We would keep track of the tally and the winner would be announced at the end of the day, only to start over the next day.
Initially, K wasn't enthusiastic about the game and didn't want to participate. However, with persistence and a positive cheerful attitude from Christine, K came around and participated in the game with the rest of us. She chose the "Right Price" on her first guess which made for a good laugh. The continuity we had with Christine made us feel relaxed and assured knowing K was getting good care. As a mother, I was very comfortable leaving her in the evening knowing Christine was her nurse.
Christine was obviously an expert in her role as my daughter's nurse, but one thing that sets her aside from other nurses was her ability to include the whole family in the way that she cares for her patients. She is a very relatable human being. We were able to talk about our kids and grandkids and shared photos. With her military background, she was able to relate to my son who would soon be leaving for boot camp and answer questions and give information to him about it, which I appreciated. She is not just a nurse with a task list checking things off. She takes time to go above and beyond what is expected of her.
Our experience from the ED to ICU to 2West to discharge was phenomenal. The care from the physicians, nurses, co-workers, friends, and family made a difficult situation, quite a pleasurable experience. Working in the hospital myself, I don't often see healthcare from the patient's perspective, so our experience was excellent and makes me proud to be part of NorthBay Healthcare.