As a cardiac floor, we have multiple patients who have very lengthy stays, sometimes more than a year, waiting for a heart transplant. The nurses on Unit 66 always go above and beyond for these patients. They make time in their day to take these patients outside for fresh air and sunshine. They’ve had birthday parties and anniversary parties. One of our nurses even came in on a weekend to bring them a home-cooked steak and potato meal a few weeks ago.
Amanda Carver, a wonderful, upbeat nurse, wanted to do something special after talking with one of our “resident” patients. He was missing his home life and the normalcy of hosting a BBQ and being with his family, that live far away and have difficulty visiting at times. Amanda, along with our Nurse Manager, spent weeks organizing a BBQ for this special patient; finding the ideal location to keep the patents safely on their IV drips and cardiac monitors while adhering to hospital policy. They gained approval to use 2 doctors for the event. The weather cooperated and it was a beautiful afternoon with burgers, kids, pets, music, games, friends, and family. The patients’ family was there and full of smiles – they were finally able to spend a much needed “normal” afternoon with their husband and dad. A simple BBQ, but it meant so much to a family. Our patient’s wife thanked us many times, saying “he finally felt normal for once” and “best unit ever with the most caring nurses. They care from the heart.” We often get as much from our patients as they get from us. With our patient’s wife’s words we may even have a new slogan: “Caring For the Heart, From the Heart”.