Ken Kinsella
April 2019
University of Virginia Health System
United States




Kenny RN was our post-op nurse. He immediately built a rapport with my spouse (the patient) and me. We were facing the possibility of pancreatic cancer and all it entails, but first, we had to get through the first 7 days post op distal pancreatectomy with splenectomy. The surgery alone has a high rate of life-altering complications. The rapport, respect for my spouse's dignity, concern/caring attitude, the quality of care he provided my husband, and the knowledge base was beyond my expectations. I am a Clinical Nurse Specialist and a Nurse Practitioner, dual certified in Virginia and work at another facility not far from UVA. I did not tell Kenny this information. His treatment of my spouse was absolutely above and beyond what we had hoped or expected.
When my spouse started having symptoms of a possible complication, he actively listened to my concerns regarding my spouse's rapid change in condition. He reported these concerns to the surgery team who came to evaluate.
He managed my spouse's care logically, by teaching me techniques we would need to know just to get through the first night and thereafter; issues as simple as how to use the bed to help my spouse get up in bed without hurting myself, getting in and out of bed, safe rolling techniques, how to help him to the bathroom. I had not worked in med/surgery in 10 years, so in a stressful situation like this, I would not remember many of the standard practices like proper use of incentive spirometer or log roll while on abd precautions. He was a coach to us, he was knowledgeable beyond my expectations, he was supportive, he was an advocate, he was one of the best nurses I have ever had the privilege to know or work with in any capacity. We were admitted near the end of his shift and he never made us feel as if we were a nuisance. He acted as if my spouse was the most important patient to him that day.
My incision had to be cut open and packed 2 days after surgery. He made my fears subside, made walks "educational" and enjoyable. When it was time to give report one night, my roommate was having an emotional breakdown. He gave report, and stuck around after his shift to ensure he knew she would be ok. He always puts his patient's needs 1st. If I had to be a patient again, I would request Kenny! UVA is blessed to have him on staff!