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The Silver Lining in ICU

2018/05/10

The Silver Lining in ICU

In the past, I don’t quite understand the care delivered by healthcare providers. I used to think that to cure diseases and to save the patients are nothing more than just the duty of healthcare staff. This cognition was totally changed after my father was resuscitated in ICU and recovered afterwards. Each time, when my father shares his experience in ICU, he would like to mention the nurse Wang Xuejiao with a very deep sense of gratitude in his voice. 


My father was transferred to the ICU due to septic shock from cholangitis one night. He had a very complicated interventional surgery that I could not repeat the name of. I could only remember how hard it was when doctors came to my mother and me, talking about the possible condition changes of my father. My mom was too fragile to understand any of the words and therefore, I sent her home to have a rest. I was the only family member there for my father and today I could still remember how I felt-just like “the sky is collapsed” that night. After a few hours (it felt like ages) of rescuing by the professional team at Sir Run Run Shaw Hospital, there came the great news that the condition of my father was finally stable.


My mom came to check on my father early the next morning. We were so lucky to see that my father could talk then. As soon as he could say a few words, he started to talk mostly about his nurse Wang Xuejiao who took great care of him. We understood from his broken words that Xuejiao was there all night encouraging my father, even though when he was in a coma.


Ms Wang welcomed my mom and me and talked briefly about my father’s condition after she thoughtfully brought chairs for us. She comforted us and said she would get the doctors for us. She then disappeared in her busy work and left the room for the three of us. We did not even have time to say “thanks” to her. After experiencing that horrible day, I began to understand how important it is to have a professional caring nurse for the recovery of a patient and family.


My father was an engineer and therefore had very high demands. The disease was such a tragedy for him. He mentioned later that the days when Ms Wang was his primary nurse, were the silver lining of his misery. Every interaction with my father, Ms Wang would put on her big smile, which alone is the comfort for a patient. She would explain the functions of each tube in the words that my father would understand. My father was on “Nothing by Mouth”, Ms Wang would approach to my father every hour to moist his lips with a cotton swab and to ask about his needs, which made my father very happy and satisfied. As his condition got better, Ms Wang noticed that my father got a bit bored staying in the ICU. She explained to my father that he still needed close monitoring for a few more days in ICU before being transferred to the general ward. She then brought newspaper for him to read.  My father had presbyopia that he could not read the small characters on newspaper. Ms Wang noticed that and explained with sorry on her face that she did not have enough time to read for him. She then brought my father with a brochure of “Patient’s Guide---Diabetes” and said this brochure had the biggest characters she could possibly find in the unit. My father was very grateful that he saved the brochure in the obvious spot of our living room after he was discharged.


Another night as referred by my father that he was touched the most by Ms Wang. That night, Ms Wang was not my father’s primary nurse, but she immediately came to my father as she just started her night shift and said that tonight she was needed in other places, but my father may still call her for help at any time. My father was so thankful to Ms Wang’s kind offer. It turned out that my father’s primary nurse that night was very busy with another patient whose condition got worse. My father did not know what to do when he felt distension in his abdomen from the constipation. As he worried that his condition may get worse, my father called Ms Wang for help even though he thought he should not add more work on Ms Wang.  Anyway, Ms Wang did not show any impatience to my father and instead she comforted him and provided the professional compassionate care my father could not possibly imagine.


After discharge, my father could not forget the best care he received from Sir Run Run Shaw nurses, especially that from Ms Wang Xuejiao. He suggested that I should find an opportunity to extend his thanks to her. When I heard about the DAISY foundation, it immediately came to me that this kind of award was made for nurses like Ms Wang Xuejiao. We want to say “Thank You” to her!


Name: Wang Xuejiao, BSN, RN

Unit: 1-3F ICU

 

Author: Patient Family

Translator: Qu Yuedan

Reviewer: Si Xiaocai


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