In the wake of the Academy Awards, Hospital News is pleased to once again focus on the stars and outstanding performances of the year in the world of nursing.
Unlike Hollywood, there is no Academy selecting the nominees but it is you – patients, families, colleagues and other health care professionals – bringing our attention to those nurses that stand out and have made a difference in our lives.
What are the categories in which nurses demonstrate exemplary performances? Here are just a few:
“Her main concern is for her patient and she always takes great care of them with a positive and friendly attitude.”
When we are sick or in pain we are at our most vulnerable. Although friends and loved ones can support us, it is the caring and support of nurses that we rely on most. Over and over again we hear from patients how important that caring touch, encouraging smile, or cheerful disposition is for their recovery. Repeatedly we hear how often a nurse has touched their hearts and held their hands – a simple gesture that holds so much meaning and has such powerful impact on our healing.
“He is the last nurse on the unit after every shift making sure everyone is finished their work and assisting where needed.”
“She works long hours and gives 100 per cent of her time and energy, always going above and beyond her call of duty”
There is no question that nurses go above and beyond the call of duty. Nurses that are heroes go that extra mile and then some. Nurses often arrive early and leave late. They work in situations where they are often understaffed with escalating demands on their time and attentions. They do it – not for the remuneration, recognition and status – they do it because of their love for the profession. Often we hear from nurses that they were born to be nurses – that it is more of a calling than a profession. Nurses who do not have a genuine compassion for their patients and dedication to their job tend to get burnt out quickly, because it’s an extremely stressful and physically demanding job.
“She sees beyond how things have always been done and introduces newly researched practices in order to support practices that best help the patient.”
Nursing heroes are professionals in the true sense of the word. They constantly look for ways to do their jobs in the best possible way and are curious about how things can be improved. They value professional development and share their knowledge but they aren’t afraid to rock the boat from time to time when the situation demands it.
One patient describes a nursing hero who helped her husband when he was being treated in the ER for a serious cut and had lost a lot of blood. The nurse noticed that the patient had no pulse in his foot and returned in seconds with a team from vascular and plastics. The patient credits the nurse with saving her husband’s foot.
“She is not only there to teach but to support, encourage, and be a resource for all of us.”
Nursing heroes realize that they are a valuable resource to their younger colleagues and strive to share their knowledge and expertise. Not only do they demonstrate best practices in nursing, they walk the talk, provide leadership and value teamwork. Nursing heroes are available to listen and teach as well as encourage others to be the best that they can be.
“I have heard her quietly but strongly advocate for the patient even when the physician disagrees. She does not take no for an answer if she is worried she will make sure that everyone on the care team understands why she is worried and she won’t stop advocating until the patient receives optimum care.”
Nurses usually spend more time with patients than any other health care professional. They notice the subtle changes and are alert to what the implications may be. They trust their intuition, judgment, knowledge and expertise to provide the best possible care for their patients. They are patient advocates in the true sense of the word and health care is all the better for their contribution.
And the winner is…
This year we again encourage you to send us your stories about the Nursing Heroes that have touched your lives. It is your opportunity to recognize a nurse who has gone above and beyond the call of duty; a nurse who brightened your day or brought a smile to your face. A nurse who lingered a minute or two longer at your child’s bedside or listened to the concerns of your aging parent. A nurse who created an oasis of calm in the midst of a crisis or held your hand when you cried out in the night.
This year we are again offering cash prizes compliments of our sponsor Aramark Healthcare and will be accepting submissions until April 19th.