Patient view

Take the time to offer patients reassurance

Senior staff nurse Donna Cutler puts compassion into action by giving her patients time to discuss concerns, says Melissa Cuevas, pre-assessment ward and outpatient manager.

Senior staff nurse Donna Cutler puts compassion into action by giving her patients time to discuss concerns, says Melissa Cuevas, pre-assessment ward and outpatient manager


Anxious patients need compassionate reassurance. Picture: iStock

Watching Donna care for an older woman who was due to have surgery demonstrated how she puts care, compassion and thought into her work. The patient and her husband were anxious about the procedure at BMI St Edmunds Hospital, and Donna picked up on this.

More time

She put extra time in with them at the initial appointment, going through everything that the operation would entail. Then she followed up with a phone call a couple of days later to make sure they were feeling comfortable, and then on the morning of the surgery she spoke to them and checked they were being reassured. It was the way Donna found more time to spend with them both that made them so much calmer and happier about the operation.

This is just one of many examples I could give of how Donna epitomises the definition of a caring, compassionate and conscientious nurse. Every day she comes to work with such a positive energy and her patients pick up on and praise her dedication towards them.

In this case, even though she was busy, she recognised that this couple needed extra support. She arranged other staff members to cover some of her other work so that she could give them the time they needed.

Stop and reassess

Looking at the patient and thinking about what they need is something that all nurses can learn from. If patients are looking uncertain or scared then stop and reassess, and make sure what you are saying is understood and ask if they have any questions.

When Donna sits down with patients she makes them feel that they are the most important patient in the hospital. This is not just an occasional occurrence, but every day. She has to be persuaded to take a lunch break, otherwise she would work through just in case a patient needs her.

 

 

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