Sarah Fitzmaurice, BSN RN, was nominated for the DAISY Award by a former patient she had cared for. The patient’s nomination stated, “Where do I begin about Sarah? Sarah is the most friendly person I have ever met. From the moment I met Sarah I knew I had met a very special person. I look forward to coming to the hospital and seeing all my nurses, but when Sarah is working I get extra excited. We have been through a lot together. She has helped me through a lot of hard times in less than ideal situations, but has also always been there for me with a big smile and her warm comforting personality. Sarah is one of the many reasons I feel safe and comfortable whenever I have to come to the hospital.
I recently was admitted for an MRSA infection and I have to come in for daily IV antibiotics in the outpatient infusion center. Over the past few weeks I have been acting very stubbornly when it comes to wearing a mask while I have a low white blood cell count. One morning I walked into the hospital like any other day. Everything was going as it usually does and then I saw Sarah immediately as I got off the elevator on the 5th floor. I was greeted by a big smile and a high five. She asked when I was going to come back for my last round of chemotherapy and I said probably not for a while because I am technically neutropenic right now and none of my counts seem to want to go up. Sarah’s face immediately turned from happy to concerned and she said, ‘where is your mask?’ The other nurses had been hounding me to wear a mask, but I was feeling like I had already been through it all and what else could I pick up now. I tried to make up an excuse and said I needed to get to outpatient because I was running late. Sarah wasn’t buying it. She went into the supply room, got a mask, and lectured me walking from the main 5 desk to the infusion center about why it is important for me to wear a mask when my counts are really low. At the end of the conversation she said, ‘I’m not trying to lecture you, but I want you to know I care about you. You have been through enough already, and you don’t need to pick up another bug and come back here before your last round of chemo.’ Hearing this from just about anybody else I think I would have rolled my eyes and said ok, ok, but when I looked at Sarah she had that big smile back on her face and I could see that she really meant it. That type of dedication for even the smallest thing again shows me why Sarah is an amazing person and an outstanding nurse.
Sarah has helped me through a lot of hard times while I have been a patient at St. Luke’s. When I see her on the floor I get a calming feeling because I know everything is going to be alright. She has gone above and beyond her regular duties on several occasions to make me and my family comfortable. I can honestly say I don’t know if I would have has as good of an experience without her on the floor. Sarah is someone that I know I can trust and I look forward to having a long term relationship with her outside the hospital after all my treatments are done. Sarah is only one of the very special people that have made me cherish my time at St. Luke’s, and I wish I could write something for every single nurse on the 5th floor, but when you are looking for a nurse that goes above and beyond her duties to make her patients feel comforted, cared for, and special, Sarah truly is that nurse.