Monday we looked at the story of a young nurse in training. This is a follow-up story he wrote eight years after the burn unit situation.
“I took up a job in an ICU. One weekend, a 16-year-old boy came in who had been in a terrible automobile accident. On arrival he was near death and not expected to live. I elected to “break the rules” and let his family stay at his bedside while we cared for him moment to moment. It was not a popular move, and I knew I risked being reprimanded for my decision. As hard as we tried, we could not save this young boy and he died later that night. After my shift, I stayed on with his parents and stood by his bedside and cried with them.
I was only 21 years old at the time but as I have had the privilege to work in many roles within CHS, I have been so thankful that I can share with new nurses the importance of holding on to the emotions that go along with our work.”
-Thomas Masters, Carolinas Healthcare System, Charlotte, NC
Again, the connection with the patients is so important to what you do. Certainly I do not know the protocols of the ICU nor if the action described above should have been done. What I do know is, as a person that has been with family members during medical treatment situations, I can remember so well when that caring hand was extended during trying medical times. I don’t believe that caring can be separated from the clinical care, nor can it be separated when you are leading those that provide the care. People do amazing things when they are cared for.
Something to consider in your leadership, whether bedside or CNO…frontline physician or CMO.
(This story was taken from the book, “What’s Right in Healthcare” stories compiled by Sutter Health)