We had a gentleman come in after a fall. After only having X-rays done, he was up for discharge. When I went to see what the holdup was for discharge, the nurse told me he was deaf and had other special needs, so he was waiting on his brother to pick him up (who also happened to be his POA). Time went by and I checked on her again and the patient was still there. It seemed as if every time I went to check on the staff, this nurse was on the phone regarding this patient but each time more and more upset. It was later in the day that I was able to put the pieces to the puzzle together.
Mr. M lived alone but could clearly not take care of himself. His brother couldn't take care of him either and was not happy we were discharging him so they expected us to "deal with it". Of course we have seen this many times. What is a nurse to do? Hope that we find somebody that can care for the patient until they get placed, right? Hope they somehow get admitted, right? Well, not so much in Mr. M's case.
So what does Crystal do? She used her resources from working on the med/surg floor and got social services to try to get him placed from the ER but of course it doesn't pan out. So, she does the next best thing, gets him durable medical equipment for his home so that hopefully he doesn't fall until the social worker gets him placed. Meanwhile, the brother and his wife are giving Crystal their wrath, both in person and via phone, about why this patient needs admission and how they can't possibly care for him in their home etc., but she is not giving up on her patient.
Nonetheless, when she calls the brother to come pick the patient up for a second time (as he had left earlier already refusing to take him) he tells Crystal "Well we threw all his furniture away because it was badly soiled so now you can't send him home at all." Pretty much “deal with it”. Most nurses would be at their wits end by now. Some nurses would send the patient home by transport to the brother’s house and have him deal with it; but not Crystal.
Instead of giving up, she went to a physician, explained the situation, called in a favor with an admitting physician and got the patient admitted. Hooray for a happy ending!
Crystal Skulimoski told me at the end of her shift that day, "I earned my pay today", but for the advocacy and dedication to this patient's care, she deserves a DAISY Award!
Note: This is Crystal's second DAISY Award!