Martha delivers compassionate care to every patient, every time. It is quite remarkable to witness her develop relationships with every patient she cares for. She often is found sitting at their bedside enjoying their company. When she provides information or teaching, she will sit eye level, right next to the patient and spend the time to make sure they understand everything. She not only provides passionate care for patients but for the families as well and always makes herself available to them.
Martha was caring for a young female patient with substance abuse, and whose parents were also addicts. The situation was extremely challenging since the family dynamics were overwhelming and often the primary nurse was not only managing the patient condition but serving as peace keeper to prevent the explosive fights that often erupted within the family. Many nurses verbalized how frustrating the situation was and you could see it taking a toll on them. At the end of each shift, most nurses requested not to take the patient back because it was too much. Not Martha. She accepted the challenging situation and never showed frustration regarding the circumstances. She identified the triggers creating the discord among the family and addressed it. She realized when the family gathered together, it was a catalyst for the fights to break. She established boundaries and allowed only one parent to visit at a time. Martha assessed the situation and identified a way to prevent the fights allowing the focus to shift back to the care needed for both this patient and the family. Throughout all of this, she never verbalized or demonstrated frustration as other staff had, only her desire to help this patient and her family.
Martha exhibits this type of caring professionalism every shift she works. Another shift when Martha was assigned in Medical Step Down, she had a very demanding day. She had a patient declining who required transfer to ICU and it was keeping her diligent stabilizing the patient, getting the orders needed, and waiting for a bed to be available. While this was going on, Martha’s other patient was a young woman who was becoming increasingly confused due to possible substance withdrawal. The patient was attempting to get out of bed, pulling her IVs out and continually expressing her wishes to leave. At one point, the patient called for Uber to pick her up and the driver was attempting to. Martha had to speak to the driver several times to explain the situation. She even made sure that the patient would not be charged for the request. Although it was hectic between these two patients, Martha provided exceptional care that went above and beyond for all her patients. She sat with the confused young women and calmly re-oriented her. In an unruffled, composed voice, Martha repeatedly reassured the patient that she wanted to take care of her, she wanted to help. Even as the woman became more aggressive and verbally abusive, Martha continued to remain calm and provide compassionate care. It was remarkable to see Martha manage this challenging situation and not become frustrated or allow the insults of the women deter her from delivering extraordinary care. If you were not aware of the situation, you would think Martha was having a “good day”.
Even though it was an extremely overwhelming shift, she did not allow her patients to know and made each one of them feel like she had the time for them. She left the stress of the day at the door before entering each patients’ room. She truly provides exceptional care no matter what is going on and puts patients first, even when they are too confused to appreciate it.