Halisah Aliakhbar

Halisah Aliakhbar

Halisah Aliakhbar, Registered Midwife

Labour and Delivery
Security Forces Hospital
Riyadh
United States

Halisah showed remarkable kindness and compassion towards her colleague (Mary) who was suffering from Terminal Cancer. Halisah spent nights with Mary when she was admitted into the hospital (ER). She remained with Mary either before or after duty and did this without complaint whilst expecting nothing in return. Halisah remained cheerful and compassionate throughout and especially whilst arranging for Mary to be flown home to Malaysia. Halisah personally arranged for Mary to have her medical clearance and hospital clearance within 24 hours (1st Day of Eid). She also arranged with the airline for oxygen therapy to be available for Mary on her flight home. On this flight Halisah accompanied Mary home whilst also independently upgrading to Business class (at airlines insistence) since Halisah was to be Mary's support both friendship wise but also by providing nursing care should Mary require it on her journey home.

The day before Mary was due to fly home, the airline refused to accept the request for Mary to have oxygen on board (minimum notice period was 72 hours). However Halisah refused to accept this as a final decision. She used charm, grace and humor to achieve her goal of ensuring Mary went home to her loved ones (Husband and children) as planned. Halisah did all this voluntarily because she felt anyone would do this in the same situation and also as she explained this is what a family member does and here in Security Forces, we are a family. This underpins her principle that Mary was not just a colleague but was seen as a family member.

Halisah amazingly cajoled and ensured that Mary was accepted onto the flight when the airline again refused to admit Mary onto the flight one hour before departure because there was a discrepancy on the medical clearance form. She showed the flight company proof of her nursing registration and credentials and promised again to be Mary's caregiver during the flight home. This allowed Mary to have the care, comfort and support on this flight home.

Halisah arranged for Mary's belongings (7 years' worth of belongings) to be packed up and cargoed home to Mary's family. Although Halisah accompanied Mary home, what is quite remarkable is that she went to Malaysia and returned back to Riyadh within 3 days to be on duty after 4 days. She did this on her days off. Halisah did not ask for any remunerations regarding paying for her flight ticket but paid for this independently.

She also arranged for the medical records (medical imaging) to be made into a CD which explained all of Mary's treatment. Medication and a Doctor's letter which Mary required was also quickly obtained. All of these were vital for Mary because she would need them when she went to her own hospital in Malaysia for additional treatment.

However, one of the most remarkable aspects of this story is that Halisah arranged over a period of 4 months to ensure Mary's final salary and benefits were finally paid to her family. The matter of settling Mary's final remuneration was made more difficult due unexpected issues which Halisah did not know about. During this time Halisah acted as Mary's spokesperson when dealing with her Bank to try and solve those difficulties. Halisah on numerous occasions during her off duty periods went to this bank to try and settle the unresolved issues. Throughout this time Halisah maintained open and clear communication with Mary's family in all aspects of Mary's situation but particularly in this point. Finally when Halisah went on her personal annual leave she was able to attend Mary's funeral and give a final farewell to her friend.

When I asked Halisah why she did all this for her colleague, she humbly said this is because she wanted Mary to be with her family and also Halisah wanted to know that she did everything possible to help.

Halisah is so humble in what she did. She never mentions it and never draws attention to herself and will quickly change the subject if this is ever raised. But to me she is a true unsung heroine and doesn't recognize the true acts of kindness she shows anyone and everyone each day.