I started a new chemotherapy after having been in remission from lymphoma, which developed into myelodysplasia. I was apprehensive about how it was going to go, with daily injections of Vidaza for seven days in a row. Jennie Burns was my nurse for that first day and for a couple of days during the week. She was very thorough in checking my symptoms and in caring for me. I noticed that she was very calm and concentrated on me. If there was any stress or problem going on with her patient load or any work issue, she did not burden me with it. She was a very attentive listener and very skilled at administering the injections. I asked her one day if she had a routine, because every day that she helped me, things went so smoothly, and she admitted that she does have a routine that she follows. Her professionalism combined with compassion helped me so much through that first week.
I did not have Jennie on subsequent weeks, but when I ran into her in the area, she remembered me and would stop to say hello and chat for a moment. I know she cares for her patients.
Unfortunately, my wife is afflicted with an incurable cancer (Multiple Myeloma) and needs to be a frequent visitor at the Oncology Department at Interstate. Many of the procedures are very long and come with a certain amount of stress simply by way of what they are for and the process required. Also at play is the competence required to place IVs, be aware of the patient's condition during the process, and still try to tend to the personal needs of the patient while we are there.
Jennie has been outstanding. For that reason, we have requested that she be our nurse as often as her schedule will allow. My wife is currently undergoing immunotherapy which is a very long process. She has to sit in a chair for hours with an IV while the infusion takes place. The first one took almost nine hours. During the time, Jennie constantly checked to see how she was doing (and, how I was doing) making sure that we were as comfortable as possible during the process. Periodically, my wife would unconsciously move her arm and kink the IV tube, resulting in that obnoxious alarm going off. Jennie never acted impatient with her and always made the adjustments with a smile.
It’s a little thing, but Jennie remembers that my wife likes the Yogurt-covered pretzels that are available in the snack area. Usually, however, there is only one package and whoever gets there first is the winner. Almost every week, right after my wife sits down, Jennie is there with her package of Pretzels. A little thing, but it makes my wife feel that Jennie cares for her as a friend and person, not just another patient of the many that are seen every day.
Not all of Jennie's appeal is due to her winning personality and compassionate caring attitude. She is obviously very concerned about the level of her competence and technical expertise as she applies the necessary skills to safely administer the drugs that are her responsibility. We feel secure in her hands as indicated both by her attentiveness and the obvious attempts at skillfully and painlessly inserting an IV in a person whose veins are always a challenge.
Jennie has always given just that extra level of care, interest and obvious desire to do her job skillfully and competently that make us want to have her whenever we can. We both think that Jennie Burns is outstanding.