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Nurse Helps Patient Find Calm in the Storm

Posted by | Posted in Memorial Medical Center, Nursing | Posted on 19-05-2016

Bryce Damery, RN

Bryce Damery, RN

Radio disc jockey Kellie Michaels wasn’t expecting an emotional roller coaster after coming out of surgery, but there it was—anxiety, discomfort and an intense desire to go home—all culminating in what she described as “a mini-meltdown.”

“I asked the nurse to let me go home, even though I knew he couldn’t make that call,” Kellie said. “The feelings ranged from being uncomfortable to feeling very confined to the bed and not being able to get up and move around. What he did next really made a huge difference, though.” Read the rest of this entry »

5 Things that Create an Exceptional Nursing Environment

Posted by | Posted in Memorial Medical Center, Nursing | Posted on 05-05-2016

Brian DeLoche speaks about his experience as a JointWorks patient.

Brian DeLoche speaks about his experience as a JointWorks patient.

When you or a loved one are admitted to the hospital, your nursing care will make an important impact on your recovery. But what makes an exceptional nurse? Some qualities are easy to recognize: a personal touch, an attentive eye, knowledge of a patient’s medical situation and compassion. Other qualities happen behind the scenes and provide nurses with the support they need to provide the best care possible for their patients.

Former Memorial Medical Center patient Brian DeLoche is a three-time cancer survivor, a sepsis survivor and a knee replacement recipient. He jokes that he has spent a lot of “quality” time in Memorial Medical Center’s patient care system. Read the rest of this entry »

TEN Helped This Nurse Zero in on Career in Nursing

Posted by | Posted in Memorial Medical Center, Nursing | Posted on 06-07-2015

Alison is now an RN at Memorial Medical Center

Alison Kirchgesner is an RN at Memorial Medical Center today

Alison Kirchgesner, like most high school students, wasn’t sure what job she wanted to pursue after high school, but a Memorial Medical Center initiative helped her zero in on a nursing career.

“I knew back then I wanted to do something in the medical field, but I was on the fence about nursing at the time,” the 24-year-old said.

A guidance counselor told her about Memorial’s Teens Experiencing Nursing (TEN) Camp, a free summer camp for high school students interested in a nursing career. Students have the opportunity to job shadow and interact with nursing staff on several nursing units throughout Memorial.

Kirchgesner attended TEN Camp during the summer of 2009 when she was a student at Glenwood High School in Chatham. Today, she is a registered nurse at Memorial Medical Center serving on the day shift on 7C ICU. Read the rest of this entry »

2012 Top 10 Nursing-Led Innovations at Memorial Medical Center

Posted by | Posted in Memorial Medical Center, Nursing | Posted on 06-05-2013

Harmon, Betsy 08Nurses are thought of as compassionate care providers who are the eyes and ears of the physician. While this is certainly true, a nurse’s job description doesn’t end there.

Nurses seek to care for patients beyond the bedside in ways that often go unseen by patients and their families. Patient safety and comfort are two of the driving factors that lead nurses to seek new processes and best practices that ultimately transform the care delivered to patients.

In recognition of Nursing Excellence Week, May 6-12, here’s a look at 10 outstanding innovations in patient care that were implemented or achieved great results at Memorial in 2012, all of which Memorial nurses contributed to significantly. Read the rest of this entry »

How One Nurse Made the Difference for a Leukemia Patient

Posted by | Posted in Cancer Care, Nursing | Posted on 03-10-2012

Stephen Wilkin and Family

On April 2, Stephen Wilkin was feeling tired. It was a Monday, and after a weekend of family time and riding his motorcycle, he assumed he was coming down with a cold or the flu. He called his physician clinic, which ordered some blood work.

By the end of the day, Stephen was an inpatient on Memorial’s 2E Oncology unit.

“His physician’s office had called back, told him they thought he had leukemia and to get to Memorial Medical Center right away,” recalled Stephen’s daughter, Ashley Creasey. “My mom and I were both in shock.”

Stephen, 56 of Girard, assumed he was coming to MMC for more tests, but he was admitted that night. Read the rest of this entry »

To Love the Unlovely: A Nurse’s Story

Posted by | Posted in Nursing | Posted on 14-08-2012

Deb was named Mentor of the Year during 2012 Nursing Team Week.

Nursing can be a challenging yet equally rewarding career. This is especially true for nurses working in a psychiatric unit, where expressions of anger and aggression aimed at the nursing staff often are more common than words of appreciation.

Early in her career on the adult psychiatric unit at Memorial Medical Center, Deb Edmonson, BSN, RN-BC, discovered through a difficult patient’s experience that she had the patience and understanding for providing unconditional care and support to patients who needed her at their most vulnerable moments.

Michael was a 40-year-old gentleman, admitted for violent and aggressive behavior from a combination of a violent upbringing, previous drug and alcohol abuse, and dementia symptoms from a degenerative, incurable brain disease. He was also dealing with other complicating factors, including end-stage renal disease and congestive heart failure. Nobody else would take him. Read the rest of this entry »

The Difference a Nurse Navigator Can Make

Posted by | Posted in Cancer Care, Memorial Medical Center, Nursing | Posted on 17-07-2012

Rhonda Roles, RN, Memorial Regional Cancer Center nurse navigator and Kathryn Peterson, Carlinville

Kathryn Peterson first started seeing flashing lights out of the corner of her eye last December. Several weeks later, a neighbor rushed her to the hospital in her hometown of Carlinville after the lights and pain in her head intensified.

The doctor first suspected a migraine. Until a Computed Tomography (CT) scan revealed a large mass in her brain.

“He turned white as a ghost,” Kathryn said. “I was in an ambulance on my way to Memorial in minutes.”

Estranged from her family and with few friends, Kathryn felt alone. But then she met nurse navigator Rhonda Roles, RN.

Rhonda’s role as the Memorial Regional Cancer Center’s nurse navigator is to ensure patients connect to resources they need. Read the rest of this entry »

How a Boy and Fishing Solidified a Nursing Career

Posted by | Posted in Burn Center, Memorial Medical Center, Nursing | Posted on 22-06-2012

Doug Gregory, RN, Nurse Manager, Regional Burn Center

Nursing is more than a profession. It’s a calling. A desire to help, care and serve those in a time of need. 

Each day, nurses make a difference in the lives of their patients. But most will tell you that sometimes, it’s the patient who leaves a lasting impact.

Doug Gregory, RN, nurse manager for Memorial’s Regional Burn Center, has been a nurse for eight years. Below, he recalls one of his first patients, whose personal story validated his career choice:

“When I was working at a children’s hospital in St. Louis, I met a 12-year-old boy named Kenny.  He had a congenital defect with his liver and it caused a big, protruding belly.

He had been on a transplant list, on which he was waiting for a very long time. So we got to know Kenny very well. The thing that stands out the most is how throughout all his hospitalizations, he just wanted to be a teenage boy and do teenage boy things.  Read the rest of this entry »

A Calling, Not a Career – For Most Nurses, It Takes Just One Patient to Confirm Their Career Choice

Posted by | Posted in Memorial Medical Center, Nursing | Posted on 05-06-2012

Mandy Lyons, RN, Memorial Medical Center, Intensive Care Unit

Many say that choosing a career in nursing is more like a calling. It takes a special person to be a great nurse, and each has a story from their early days as a new nurse that confirmed for them that they were indeed in the right profession.

Mandy Lyons, a registered nurse in Memorial’s 2C intensive care unit who began her career 11 years ago, recalls one of her first patients, who validated her career choice:

While a new grad working in the Emergency Department of another hospital, a young mother brought her limp 6-month-old boy to the triage unit. The baby looked lifeless, and I feared it was a grim situation.

I rushed the baby back to a room and yelled for a doctor. I could see how helpless that young mother felt as the ER team was working to revive the boy. The mother cried and prayed that her son would be OK. She looked worn down, her clothes had holes in them, her hair was matted, but her baby boy was perfectly clothed. I could tell she put her son before herself. Read the rest of this entry »

Helping Hospital Patients Manage Pain

Posted by | Posted in Nursing | Posted on 24-05-2012

If you’re in pain in the hospital, Kimmy Eldridge is one of the people you want to see.

Eldridge, a registered nurse, is one of 38 Pain Resource Champions at Memorial Medical Center who are available for inpatient pain consultations to the nursing staff around the clock. They include registered nurses, healthcare psychologists and physical therapists.

Pain Resource Champions assist a patient’s care team to identify the best medication regimen and therapies for a patient. They also work with patients’ family members to include them in the plan of care and to help them achieve a sense of control and ownership in the process. Read the rest of this entry »