January 2016
Neonatal ICU, Ronald Reagan UCLA Health Medical Center
Los Angeles
United States




Mafalda and Josie are amazing people who cared not only for my daughter, but for my wife. We have had a frightening journey and UCLA as a whole has been instrumental in the care of my family. The entire organization is amazing and these two in particular have shown what being a healer means.
When my wife was hospitalized again she was physically hurt and emotionally exhausted. Her battle with breast cancer during pregnancy and post-partum has been difficult to say the least. She has handled the decisions and stress with amazing strength and grace. After approximately her seventh LP in about a month her body had absorbed too much trauma and she needed immediate medical attention. When this happened she was physically weak and mentally drained. The night she was hospitalized our daughter was still in the NICU. I stopped by to see my daughter G, and Josie was caring for her. The next day Mafalda was working and the two of them discussed my wife A. Since A was too weak to travel to the NICU they decided to see if G could visit A. In a matter of hours, they had pushed the idea through NICU management and the medicine team (primary care for A). A was admitted on a Tuesday and by Wednesday afternoon she was holding her daughter. While A only had the strength to hold G for a few minutes, those few minutes filled her body, mind, and soul with the energy she needed to continue the battle against cancer.
Mafalda and Josie provided the only "medicine" that could heal my wife that day. That was a major tipping point in the fight against cancer. I have no doubts that we would be far worse off if the visit (and subsequent visits) had not occurred. Mafalda and Josie were instrumental in tipping the fight in our favor at a crucial point. Mafalda and Josie also got it approved so at any point in time G could leave the NICU. At that time A generally had small windows of feeling good (maybe 20 minutes randomly). Getting it setup for G to leave at any point allowed a number of visits to occur and helped my wife in many ways. It also allowed our whole family (we also have a two-year-old daughter) to be together for the first time (and only time so far). We have a picture of it and we treasure it.
The thoughtfulness, care, and compassion they showed in even thinking of bringing G out of the NICU is overwhelming to me. The initiative and follow through is amazing. Actions like this should be cultivated and encouraged among all groups. This type of thinking improves the care the hospital brings and is a major reason why UCLA is a world class facility. Furthermore, both of them continually tried to down play their actions as "nothing" or "as a part of their job". Their humility demonstrates how strong their characters are and intact their souls are. These women are truly healers and their actions will echo in my family's life for years and years to come.