We had a patient come into the ER for a psychiatric evaluation who had some issues and lives in a group home. The patient was not cooperative with staff at all and the decision was made to restrain her for her own safety. Penny Culp was in the ER and went to help with that patient.
Penny talked to the patient about her Christmas sweatshirt that she was wearing, and the patient told her that Santa was her favorite thing about Christmas, all while the restraints were being applied. Penny asked if the patient was going to ask Santa for anything and the patient became very talkative and said that she wanted a baby doll with yellow hair and a blue dress. It was funny because she was very specific about what she wanted from Santa. She was uncooperative for everything else and every other staff member.
Penny looked in the toy chest that we have and nothing there suited the patient, so Penny went to the gift shop to look and found a baby doll for the patient. She paid for it herself and it had blonde hair and a blue dress with a tiara. Penny brought it into the room and the patient was so excited. The look on the patient’s face said it all. She cuddled with the doll and calmed down right away. Penny acted like it was no big deal because it is just what she does; trying to heal the hurts of others.
Not everyone would take the time to talk to this patient like Penny did and everyone would not take it upon themselves to buy the patient a doll, which could not have been cheap in the gift shop, just because the patient said that is what she wanted for Christmas. Penny made a difference for this patient who really had trouble even comprehending what was going on while she was here, but she knew that Penny made her feel better by giving her the doll that she wanted. It helped calm her down and we were able to give her the care that she needed.