Women's & Children's Services Bereavement Team
December 2019
Women's & Chidren's Services
Wise Health System
United States
Rhonda Kirbie, RNC-OB and
Andrea Duwe, RN




Rhonda and Andrea go out of their way to make a family's birth experience the very best that they can. They do this by providing the very best care and compassion for their patients and families. Not everyone realizes that even though Labor & Delivery is the happiest place in WHS almost all of the time, there are times when it is absolutely the saddest place to be. Our staff goes above and beyond in their care of our bereaved families by supporting their grief, helping them to make memories of their brief time with their much-loved baby, and grieving along with the family. This is an important part of every Labor & Delivery nurses' training because it happens more often than you would think.
However, Rhonda and Andrea recently went beyond anyone's expectations in caring for a bereaved family experiencing an unfathomable tragedy. Recently, they bonded with a family while caring for them during the delivery of their precious son. One week after he was born, he passed away in his sleep. We were all shocked when we saw the announcement in the daily Messenger Update. They reached out to the grieving family at the funeral home to console and grieve with them. In addition, Rhonda made plaster castings of the infant's hands and feet as a keepsake for the family. Andrea made a beautifully framed copy of the infant's footprints to give to the family. What an amazing gift for the family! Rhonda and Andrea recognize that every life, no matter how fragile or brief, forever changes the world!
This was the epitome of a team effort. It was an extremely emotional experience and they supported each other as they supported the grieving family.