I have been the nurse manager of this unit for a little over 13 years - and during this time I have had the pleasure to manage Marshel Douglass.
Marshel is such a unique and special nurse that I hope I can do her justice in this nomination that she may be a serious consideration. She will be retiring in the fall and she is truly struggling with this decision - her heart is and always will be nursing.
I can easily give you hundreds of examples of her patient care advocacy, her dedication to nursing and her genuine attitude with her patients and families Marshel is that nurse that makes her patients feel like he or she is her only patient. She may have the building tumbling down around her with endless tasks yet to do, but the patient nor the family would never know - she gives her undivided attention, listens intently - immediately follows up, reports back to the patient or family what actions she's taken and keeps them in the loop of where any progress is being made. Marshel makes every patient her top priority. I've seen her run to 3 or 4 different units in search supplies or food items a patient is requesting that may not be available on our home unit.
Marshel will stay hours over her scheduled shift to assist the unit if needed - and she says patient care would suffer if she didn't. We recently had a suicide patient on our unit who required a constant sitter at bedside. Marshel was assigned the patient during her scheduled shift and attended to the patient. At the end of her shift there was not a staff member available to provide the one on one sitter coverage and the remaining staff would have to split up the workload to meet this requirement of constant supervision. In an effort to minimize the impact it would have on care across the unit, Marshel offered to just stay and work over to cover the patient for the night. Marshel - a part time employee who had already worked her scheduled 8 hour shift - stayed to care for this patient overnight - working a double. Doubles are hard enough but when they expand to the night shift they are often even more difficult to work though. In an effort to keep herself awake and moving she was extremely attentive to the patient who was not sleeping either. Marshel spent significant quality time with this patient talking with her, listening to her, offering her thoughts and generally making the patient feel much better. The next day when I had heard about her efforts I went to see the patient - I was able to speak with a family member present - who went on and on about the nurse who sat with the patient last night. How the patient was so touched by her being there and that they were able to talk, the patient didn't feel like she was a burden. Which is normal activity for Marshel - but the patient was obviously not accustomed to such personalized care.
I remember an instance where Marshel was starting her shift, she was still in the process of getting report and organizing her work to get started - a patient who was just discharged - not her patient, but was obviously unsure what to do next - she asked if he needed help. The discharged patient replied that he didn't - he was just released and was heading home - he just wasn't sure how to get to the lobby. Marshel stopped what she was doing - verified that the patient had been discharged, went to get a wheelchair and escorted the patient to the front lobby and waited with him until he was safely placed in his daughter's car.
Marshel is my lead on discharge phone calls - she frequently gets so involved in this it may take her hours with follow up. She doesn't want to let the patient down. The design of the follow up phone call is about the satisfaction - yes Marshel is concerned about that, but if the patient's needs were not met at discharge - she takes it personal to meet their needs. She will call physician offices; call the discharging physician with questions, set up appointments, contact social workers in search of resources that may not have been identified while hospitalized. She reviews medications, reviews the disease management, looking for ways to ensure the patient is doing well.
There have been countless occasions where she will head down to the gift shop to buy patients drinks not offered with normal meal delivery, newspapers, puzzle books, snack treats (pretzels, chips, nut mixes.. etc..), toys for children visiting to keep them entertained, magazines, birthday cards and so on and so on. She does this on her own.
Marshel is a nurse who puts her patients first, touches their lives and the lives of families in little ways and potentially in big ways that we may not see.
Marshel is DAISY through and through.