Michelle Burkhardt is an amazing example of what it means to be compassionate for her patients as well as patient advocate. Since starting at Parkland 4 years ago, I have never known any other nurse on our floor to have so many patients to come back to visit her, to say hello and update her on how they are doing. When I first started and noticed this trend with Michelle's patients, I always wondered "why would they come visit her?". I soon came to find out after I had transitioned from a patient care role to a nurse, that it was because of her outstanding patient care and compassion for her patient. Michelle is always going out of her way to accommodate her patients whether it be something as simple as making them more comfortable in bed to going out of her way to getting them a coke from the vending machine. I can honestly say that she has a way with patients, especially the more difficult and hard ones to please. It amazes me how she doesn't get upset with the difficult patients that no one can seem to make happy, but she works her magic and they love her! There have been numerous times when I have walked into a patient's room and immediately the patient will ask me where Michelle is because they may have had her the day before or they had her the weekend before (she works mostly weekends). She acts as a patient advocate by always seeking to put the patient first. For example, when we had a patient that was not doing well and she knew that something was not right, she kept calling the provider multiple times and even paged the next person up until something was done to prevent any harm from reaching the patient. In a time where it seems like we have been consumed with a never ending to-do list and work demands that seem impossible that we have to meet, we often times forget about the importance of building relationships with our patients and Michelle reminds me in her daily actions the necessity of always putting the patient and their needs first. When I see how she is able to win over the most difficult patient, calm down an angry family member, and have a fan of patients who come to see her after they have already been discharged, makes me want to strive to a better, compassionate nurse.
Deserving of a DAISY:Not only is Michelle a compassionate nurse, but she is a team player. When I come to work and she is there, I know that everything is going to be okay no matter what. I know when Michelle is there that I am not going to have to worry if she will help me-she will even before I ask. I dont' have to worry if there is a crisis on the floor-it will get taken care of. I don't have to have to be afraid to ask her to do something-she will gladly do it without judging me or asking why I can't do it myself. It is so nice and refreshing to know there are team player nurses out there who aren't out there to eat up the new nurses as some would call it. Even though many people don't like working weekends, they actually prefer to work weekends on this floor because of her. She creates and fosters a teamwork environment that makes it pleasant for everyone who comes to work.
She is known as the weekend nurse because she works every weekend and often times, the weekend people don't get recognized for their hard work. That is another big reason why I feel like Michelle Burkhardt deserves this award. A good example of teamwork is when Michelle has (multiple times in the past) stayed till 11pm because night shift was too short or they didn't have anyone that was charge capable. I feel like her hard work tends to get unrecognized and she deserves to be recognized for her compassion with her patients and her team player attitude. Michelle Burkhardt indefinitely deserves the DAISY award because she LEADS by example by showing her peers how to be COMPASSIONATE with her patients, RESPECTFUL to patient's wishes, INTEGRITY by being just in her decisions, COLLABORATES with others in the care of patients, STEWARDSHIP by using the resources she has to make things happen that need to happen, and EXCELLENCE in her patient care by always going above and beyond.