Elizabeth cared for my husband for multiple days during his autologous stem cell transplant. Although you receive education on the process from a DVD and from the physician and nurses on the BMT service, until he walked on that floor, he didn’t fully understand what he would be experiencing the next few weeks. Elizabeth greeted us with a smile and positive energy from the start while she expertly explained what to expect the next 3 weeks. Her manner relaxed my husband as she started talking to him about himself and his interests. She remembered those individual details about him as she cared for him on subsequent days. I could tell she really connected with him as I’m sure she does with other patients. She made him feel comfortable and that he was in good hands.
All medications and possible side effects were explained, the plan for the day was discussed and updated, and Elizabeth always followed through with questions or requests that we had. Elizabeth was thorough in infection prevention with scrubbing of hub or applying alcohol green caps, central line dressing changes and hand washing. She embodied hourly rounding with a smile. No request was ever left unfilled. After her weekend off, she requested to care for him on transplant day. Although it was her final time to be monitored in the process of stem cell infusion, you could tell she knew what she was doing. She then cared for him the next three days with kindness and compassion as effects from the chemo started.
Elizabeth was also caring for another patient who my husband had met and befriended during pheresis. Their transplant days were 2 days apart. Elizabeth was admitting the other patient and saw their connection. Following proper confidentiality measures and respect for each other’s privacy, she helped the two connect during their stay when it was right for both of them. That connection to another patient experiencing the same questions and concerns and who could cheer each other on and make each other laugh was also very important in the healing of both.
Elizabeth made a difference in the emotional and physical healing of my husband and we will always remember her and all of the leukemia/lymphoma oncology nursing staff for their expert care provided with kindness.