Pauline had the difficult task of caring for a newborn whose birth mother had no choice but to hand over her child to CPS. Due to mother's history the newborn had to be turned over to foster parents. During her shift Pauline was excellent at allowing mom and baby to bond despite understanding that in the near future this attachment would have to be temporarily broken. In addition to mom who was crying uncontrollably, it was an extremely tearful moment for everyone present (the foster parents, social worker, CPS) when the foster parents came to take the baby.
Despite the difficult circumstances, Pauline exemplified what it means to authentically care for and be compassionate for one's patients. She allowed the patient's mother the time to recover as best she could from the traumatic experience. She listened to her story, her worries, her sadness. Once the social worker had arranged for the birth mother's transportation to a homeless shelter and suggested to have the birth mother walk to the ED to be picked up, Pauline took it upon herself to escort the mother to the ED and introduced her to the security guard who would wait with her until the transportation arrived.
In pediatrics, the importance of family-centered care is always highly spoken about. Our patients are the myriad of diverse families we care for. During this traumatic time, Pauline was able to address not only the child's health needs, but also the mother's emotional needs. Pauline's actions - listening and being fully present for all her patients - exemplify what "care" authentically means when we say "excellent care" here at Kaiser Permanente.