Read on for some refreshing quotes about nurses that have been circulating the news media over the last year.
“I love nurses … every interaction we’ve had at the hospital, the doctors are wonderful and we appreciate them, but I know when Malia and Sasha were being born, we spent 90 percent of the time with the nurses and 10 percent with the OB/GYN. When my grandmother got sick and was passing away at the end, it was nurses who were caring for her in an incredible compassionate but also professional way.”
“I notice that every time that Martha gave of herself she received far more. In fact, she received a few moments of less pain and I suspect that she received life itself — a few more hours, even days, with purpose.” — Ruth Woodard, sister of Martha Keochareon, 59, a fatally ill nurse who offered nursing students an opportunity to ask anything they wanted about her experience with cancer.
Indeed, last year, Americans voted nurses the most trusted professionals in America for the 13th time in 14 years in the annual Gallup poll that ranks professions for their honesty and ethical standards. And nurses are proud of this professional integrity. “At the end of the day, I always feel honored to be a nurse,” says Holly of Brigham and Women’s mother-daughter team. “It’s incredible to be a part of patients’ lives and have them let me in when they are at their most vulnerable.” Her mother Terry agrees. “Nursing is such an amazing career with so many varied opportunities. The chance to help a person who is seeking health information to stay well or helping those who are suffering and need comfort — it is a true privilege to be able to be a part of the profession.”
The Atlantic-Journal Constitution, “What Makes A Great Nurse?”
“The basis of great nursing is caring, but it’s bigger than that,” said Deborah Almauhy, chief nursing officer at Rockdale Medical Center in Conyers. “It’s a commitment to a lifestyle, not just a 12-hour job at a hospital.
“I’m a nurse at every family picnic, neighborhood gathering and kids’ ballgame. I’m a nurse when friends are sick and [when] parents get older and turn to you for help. Nursing is a part of my protoplasm.”
“All the doctors had left. Her nurse, Andy, came to find me at my mother’s bedside. He told me about how he had to make a similar decision to allow his terminally-ill wife to die. ‘It’s what she would have wanted,’ Andy said. ‘You are carrying out her last wish, to die peacefully. I will never forget his words and his kindness.
“As we celebrate this year’s Nurses Week, I am reminded of the Hippocrates saying that the goal of medicine is ‘to cure sometimes, to relieve often, to comfort always.’ This, too, I learn through daily example from the amazing nurses I work with.” — Leana Wen, MD, emergency physician, Brigham and Women’s & Mass General Hospital
Alice Ackerman, MD, Week of the Nurse
“The world thinks a doctor cured their loved one — we may have written an order, or prescribed a treatment, but you carried it out, explained it to the patient, made sure the necessary ‘stuff’ was available in the home, fixed the transportation issue, and advocated for what our patient needed. … You work so hard, sometimes you eat chips instead of lunch, so you can start that really hard i.v. You and your predecessors have taught me so much … for all the times that I may have forgotten your name, forgot to say “thank you” or griped at you in frustration, I want you to know I trust you, I need you, I care for you deeply and I appreciate you every moment of every day, even when I forget to show it.”
“Today I ran into a Mexican restaurant to grab a quick lunch, and as I ate my meal I came across a table of nurses wearing hospital scrubs. As they chatted amongst themselves I thought about the many nurses my family has interacted with over the last five years, and I found myself filled with such appreciation for what these amazing women and men do for us.” — Mike Spohr, Executive director, Friends of Maddie