If you ever have a chance to walk the halls of the PICU on any given night shift (or day shift), you'll notice one thing in particular - all the amazing nurses!! This place seems to breed excellence. And, it's a great honor to get to work beside so many compassionate and talented people. From time to time, one nurse accomplishes the impossible and seems to really stand out, which is not an easy task among so many great nurses. That nurse is Teal Anderson.
For the past few nights, Teal has had a patient on CRRT. Those patients are one-to-ones, meaning the nurse spends nearly the entire 12 hours on her feet at the bedside in a room crammed with poles, pumps, and machines. Tonight was no different, other than we are having Cerner downtime. Not a lot of fun. Teal's patient has what looks like 400 drips going, plus the CRRT machine. It's a bit overwhelming to even look into that room, let alone stand there at the bedside non-stop. While we are having Cerner down time, all the charting is offline, paper charting. Sounds like a nightmare, right? Especially for one-to-ones on 10 thousand drips - but Teal handles it like a pro. Each time I am in the room to help out, she is concentrating intensely and being extremely meticulous in everything she does. Her focus is complete. Her attention does not waver. Her attitude is outstanding, even during downtime with a one-to-one on CRRT. The way she professionally and lovingly addresses all the needs of her patient, while maintaining their dignity and comfort, makes it seem as though she were caring for her very own child. It's really pretty cool to witness such outstanding, and what can only be described as "beyond excellent" care. She is gentle, meticulous, patient, and, did I already mention thorough?? WOW, is really all one can say. What else is there to say?
If you've ever worn an isolation gown and mask for 5 minutes, you know how hot and suffocating it can be. Try wearing one for hours and hours at a time during a 12-hour shift. Even still, Teal has a great attitude and I'm positive she is smiling under her mask. I just see her working and wonder how anyone can be so patient, diligent, kind, thorough, and pleasant for 12 hours under such conditions. She is a shining example of what All Children's is all about. She is the kind of nurse any sick person would hope for. When she leaves the room, the family wonders, "Is that a real person or an angel?"
She is the kind of nurse All Children's seeks out and hopes each new-hire will become. And, Teal makes it look easy. We even have to talk her into taking a short break or grabbing a bite to eat. She is just that dedicated and that committed to her patient. She is most definitely deserving of the DAISY Award!