Jacinta has been a joy to work with. She always has a positive attitude, is compassionate and caring for her patients while ensuring she provides them with high-quality care. She has excellent attendance, and she is always very responsive to our requests for follow up as needed. We received positive feedback from the client at Touro that she did a great job, and he was very interested in extending her contract.
While at Touro, Jacinta told me that she enjoys caring for the most critically ill patients. She shared a patient experience that truly demonstrates her compassion, caring, empathetic, family relations skills, and commitment to excellence. There was a patient who was scheduled for a procedure and during that procedure, she suffered from an injury that placed her in the ICU. The patient had an extensive list of comorbidities and one of the most primary concerns was her smoking history. She had been smoking for over 60 years. So, the patient had difficulties being weaned off of the vent. She was finally extubated, but she ended up being placed on continuous bipap due to poor oxygenation. The patient was not recovering well, and her prognosis was poor. Her daughters were always present and a little overbearing at times. Other nurses reported that the daughters monitored everything and always had a lot of questions.
Jacinta told me, I recognized that a lot of what was happening was because the daughters knew their mother was sick, and they were scared. One of the daughters was a nurse, so she was sort of familiar with most of what we were already doing and what was going on. The patient gave consent for them to be informed about everything, so my first shift taking care of the patient I made sure that I introduced myself and that I answered all of their questions. I explained everything that I was doing during my assessment, what I was looking for, and why. I explained the abnormalities that I found and how we were treating them. Some of their concerns were that the doctors were not treating certain things, so I explained to them what was ordered and addressed each particular area of concern they had to assure that she was being properly treated. I went even further and explained the pathophysiology about the patient's condition including her comorbidities and just "broke down" the information that everyone else presented to them but that no one else made sure that they truly "understood". The next day I returned to work and the day shift nurse said, "I don't know what you did, but the family was highly impressed with you. They bragged about how smart you are, and that you were the first one to address their concerns." She said that no one ever sat them down and explained everything to them before me. She said they were grateful that I would be taking care of her the next couple of days because they knew that I cared. When visiting hours ended each night, they would call me from home every single night. I would then spend at least an additional 30 minutes on the phone with each of them, because I knew they couldn't be at the hospital with their mother, and that they really just needed someone to listen to their concerns. I feel that part of my job as a nurse is to ensure the family does not have to worry about if their family is being cared for when they are not present. So, I made sure that at the very least I was able to give them peace of mind.
The patient and I even spent some time alone discussing her wishes. After several nights of spending time with her and talking to her, she finally had the conversation with her daughters. My job as the patient's nurse is to always advocate for my patient. Sometimes that means helping the patient find the courage to be able to explain their wishes to their loved ones. The patient changed her code status, and she did pass away. She did have the opportunity to express her wishes to her children before that happened. I am grateful for that.