Thursday, May 19, 2011

Ode to a Great Nurse

It is always sad when one of the best is gone. When I started at Mount Nittany Medical Center almost 5 years ago- fresh out of nursing school and desperately wanting just to work in a clinic- HD was the first nurse to chill me out about working in Cardiology and Critical Care. She was crazy smart, always calm and steadfast, and respected by doctors and nurses alike. She loved nursing and had not let her almost 30 years of clinical practice sour her respect for what she did every day. She was kind, patient and the first one to smack you upside the head if you were doing something wrong. She did not tolerate laziness, sloppy patient care or shenanigans from doctors. Any patient she had ever touched was lucky to know her.

She oriented me when I started in the ICU. She made me feel confident but made sure I had a healthy fear of the job I had in front of me. She told me that if I ever walked in the door without a little flutter of fear in my chest that I should leave Critical Care. She said it would keep me on my toes and prevent careless errors.

She was passionate about education and was always behind any movement for evidence based practice and certification. She was old school in her patient care and progressive in her theory of practice. She supported her fellow nurses and would stand up to anyone who was giving you a hard time- provided you hadn't ask for it by doing something dumb in the first place.

HD- we will miss you around the unit. I always loved coming in to work and seeing your shoes outside your locker. That meant you were already on the unit either as charge nurse or working on the floor. Either way, your presence was a bright light and I was lucky to have been a coworker of yours. Let's have lunch soon.

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