DAISY Award: A warm heart for little patients
ARRMC’s Pediatric Infusion Department can be both heartbreaking and inspiring. These are among Asante’s most fragile patients, ranging in age from a few weeks old to young adulthood.
So it’s all the more special when a dedicated nurse can brighten the day of children undergoing treatment for chronic conditions, including cancer. Nurse Wendie Miller excels at comforting these young patients who are afraid, anxious, sick and must endure the needle pokes that come with infusions. In recognition, she recently earned the DAISY Award for Extraordinary Nurses.
“Wendie is an amazing pediatric nurse,” said co-worker Kari Olson. “Not only is she exceptional clinically, she goes above and beyond to play games, create artwork, provide ‘poke prizes’ and creates laughs, if even for a small moment.”
Miller takes the time to get to know her patients, and cares for them in ways large and small. She has been known to put together care packages for those who need extended treatment at Oregon Health & Science University or who are entering hospice care, sometimes delivering the package to the family’s house.
She honors their birthdays with balloons and signs for their room. She organizes “end-of-chemo” parties so that families can ring the bell to celebrate with staff.
“She coordinates our Christmas sponsorship to make sure every patient family in need goes home with a car full of gifts,” Olson said. “These are all things that go above and beyond her job description, but make difficult patient visits just a little bit easier.”
With the help of manager Chrissie Spires, Miller received the DAISY in a surprise ceremony attended by her co-workers, husband and children.
It was a recognition well deserved, according to Olson: “My heart swells with pride working next to her every day.”
Patients and others may nominate nurses for a DAISY at any Asante hospital, based on factors including care of and compassion for patients and their loved ones.
The DAISY Foundation was established in 1999 in honor of Patrick Barnes, who died in Seattle of idiopathic thrombocytopenia purpura. His parents created the DAISY Foundation (DAISY is an acronym for diseases attacking the immune system) to recognize nurses for the exceptional care they provided their son during his illness. Hospitals around the world have since adopted the program.
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