During Service Excellence rounding I spoke with a patient who had received some devastating news. She was faced with the choice of living the remainder of her life on dialysis, possibly in the hospital, or becoming a hospice patient. She was terminally ill and had no idea. Throughout the day the patient was in tears, inconsolable, and required medication to help her calm down.
I visited the next day to find the patient, much to my surprise, in better spirits. The patient explained that her nightshift nurse had helped her find clarity, understanding, and appreciation for the opportunity she had been given. Rich helped her realize that not all people are given the chance to make plans and say their goodbyes to loved ones. The actions and words from her nurse, Rich, gave her clarity and satisfaction with her decision to accept hospice as her plan of care. She made peace with her illness and her decision because Rich gave her a new perspective. His care and compassion calmed her soul and provided understanding in a situation that was very difficult.