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A Special Nurses’ Week Message from Margaret “Maggie” Hansen, Senior Vice President & Chief Nurse Executive

I love the quote “Save one life you’re a hero, save a hundred lives, you’re a nurse”.  It is so very true.  Perhaps, though, during Nurses’ Week this year, we should pause and reflect on the millions of lives we touch while practicing our profession. Nurses impact many lives even though doing it well is more challenging than ever before. Patients are sicker, complex technology has permeated every aspect of the diagnostic and treatment processes, and regulations consume valuable time that could otherwise be spent on reducing the suffering of those entrusted in the nurse’s care.

That’s okay, Nurses evolve, adapt, and develop the strength and resilience to overcome whatever challenges come with these rapidly changing times. They manifest the power and tenacity to solve the multitude of problems they face each and every day to protect their patients and families. As such, patients heal, they become more educated, and their suffering is reduced.

It is no wonder that when I round in our patient care environments, I witness tremendously appreciative patients and families eager to share their sentiments about their nurses. It is my privilege to witness this fabulous care through the lens of our patients and families and share just some of those comments with you here:

(Mother of an adult patient) “Our lives were forever changed by this accident, but more so by the compassion demonstrated by the nurses who cared for us.  We are stronger than we knew we could ever be because the nurses helped us find our inner strengths.” 

(Father of an adult patient)  “Every single nurse allowed us to be annoyingly inquisitive.  We are amazed that they did not get tired of us asking why our son became so sick and could, instead, seemingly want to join us on our quest to find all the answers.  We must have been irritating but they never showed us that it bothered them.  We are so thankful.”

(Adult patient)  “It’s very true that nurses are angels without wings.  I got to experience that from my bed.  Every single time that I thought I was going to die, I looked up and there was a nurse there making sure that I didn’t.  They are angels without wings.”

(Mother of a pediatric patient) “A child is the most precious gift a parent can have.  When mine became so sick and I realized I could lose her, the nurses held me together day after day. Thank God for this hospital and the nurses who work here.”

(Patient)  “I had tubes coming out of everywhere and was connected to so much equipment that must have been hard to keep track of.  Not only did the nurses understand all that stuff, but they kept track of my pain and my emotional state, that by the way, was a wreck.  They were the stable force that helped me get through this nightmare.”

(Mother of an adult patient) “Nurse Jo Jo really took care of my son’s spirit.  She basically told him that there was going to be no whining on a day when whining would not have helped him get better.  She balanced that with praise and encouragement exactly when he needed it to take the next step forward.  Nurses are the ones that make that happen.  Although this experience has been so frightening for us, we appreciate learning that about your staff.  We appreciate knowing how the mind, the body, and the human spirit are connected.”

Our mission at Memorial is to “heal the body, mind and spirit of those we touch.” I think you can see from the examples shared above that Memorial Nurses live by this mission.  I am grateful to have the opportunity to share my professional nursing career with the best nurses on the face of this earth, Memorial Nurses!

Thank you Memorial Nurses!  Please take time this week to stop and reflect on the millions of lives you touch and know that you have arrived at the destination for your professional practice! Enjoy the week dedicated to YOU!

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