They say it's the quiet ones you need to watch! I met Lorrie for the first time several years ago at a nursing conference. Although we both worked at OSU East, our paths had never crossed. I have since been involved more frequently with her and have been very impressed by involvement and dedication to the unit and with her passion at the bedside. Lorrie leads the teaching program for heart failure patients. She does a fabulous job in this role. Lorrie makes a difference in the outcomes of many patients but it was a certain connection she had with one patient in particular that is the reason for this nomination.
It is rare at OSU East to have postpartum moms as patients but this particular week, Lorrie was teaching a new mom, with an infant as well as two other siblings not much more than toddlers at home. The patient was newly diagnosed with heart failure. There is no cure for heart failure and Lorrie knew the importance of getting through to this mom in her education process if this mom was to have a chance at a quality life with these children.
Lorrie, a mother of young children herself, custom designed the teaching process to help the new mom absorb what she was hearing. She spent as much time as needed and used specific examples in her teaching. Lorrie felt confident as the new mom, with heart failure, was discharged - that she had given her the tools needed to survive with her newly diagnosed chronic condition. That gave Lorrie great satisfaction.
The real satisfaction came less than a year later however. This same mom was hospitalized with an unrelated diagnosis and fortunately was again on Tower 5. The patient sought Lorrie out to tell her what a difference she had made in her life as well as the future of her children. She said it was because of Lorrie that she was able to get through a very difficult time in her life. The patient repeated back to Lorrie - one year later, exactly the teachings she had learned from Lorrie.
As nurses, we strive to have a positive impact in our patient's lives. We hope that we are good role models and that when we teach, we are able to relate in the way the patient needs at the time. The connection and rapport that Lorrie was able to develop with this lady is surely a success story for all!