Mei Lani Renger, RN, CCRN
May 2021
Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center
Los Angeles
United States




She assured them their Dad was doing everything possible to live.
These are two of the three nominations Mei Lani received from patients and/or their families: 
1.  The UCLA ICU nurse who cared for my husband for much of the nine weeks he spent dodging death on the 6th-floor neuro has become a friend for life. My husband was admitted to UCLA ER in the midst of an unprecedented global pandemic. We were unable to visit, hug or support him. It was unbearable. He became vent dependent, had a trach, feeding tube, and was 100% paralyzed. Our favorite nurse changed the course of our (collective) stay. We dropped off family photos and she smattered them all over his room. She made sure his favorite music was available. Mei Lani was compassionate, capable, kind, and funny. She worked tirelessly to read his lips. She fully supported my two young adult children when they each visited him one time when we thought he might die. She assured them their Dad was doing everything possible to live. She provided timely updates throughout her shift even when Zoom technology failed us. She ensured I was apprised of morning rounds so I could be available each and every morning for 63 days! She followed his progress after he was discharged. She fed him homemade lemon bars. She arranged for a manicure at California Rehab Institute three months after he departed UCLA. Our entire community of family and friends appreciates and understands our gratitude. We are forever indebted for the outstanding humanness and kindness and care she provided her patient. 
2.  My Husband, a kidney transplant patient, contracted a virus that wreaked havoc on his body. He was eventually admitted to UCLA, but died after a three-month stay. Throughout his last awful month when he went into a coma, all of the nurses in the unit made a huge difference in the care and treatment of our beloved J. He fought so many issues, but could not fight anymore. Throughout this time, all of his nurses were warriors, on their feet 24/7 doing everything they could with care and compassion. Mei Lani in particular went above and beyond during J's last days. When he entered hospice care, she was exceptionally compassionate and understanding of my daughter and me. She decorated his room with construction paper hearts the day that we removed the ventilator, which surrounded him with love and beauty, and she was truly there for us every step of the way. She even swapped shifts with another nurse so that she could be there with us on his final day when originally she had that day off. We are so grateful for the outstanding care that my husband and our family received in the unit and although we are of course heartbroken by the outcome, having had the support of this team made this difficult time a little easier to bear.