Today starts the Celebration of Nurses. Nurses across the country are being recognized by their employers for the outstanding jobs that they do. In a culture of escalating health care costs, staffing shortages, and emphasis on customer service, nurses are on the frontlines more than ever. That being said, I feel the need to honor those nurses I work with on a daily basis.
I work in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit at T.C. Thompson’s Children’s Hospital. So many times when I tell people where I work they confuse my unit with the neonatal ICU. We are different and we are unique. We take care of infants who have gone home from the NICU at 6 pounds to adolescents who weigh 250 pounds. We see any and every diagnosis of children who are critically ill or critically injured. We don’t specialize in any one thing, we specialize in everything pertaining to children.
Our staff is remarkable. We are the model of a team. Not only do we give excellent patient care, we care for our families, and one another. Some days are better than others. This past year we have lost several incredible children to disease and trauma. Our staff has given emotionally, physically, and spiritually to each family that we serve. PICU is a special place, our nurses make it that way. I love and admire each nurse I work with. I don’t think there is a better unit anywhere. My prayer is your child, grandchild, neighbor, or friend never has to come visit us, but if they do rest assured that there is no better place to heal than the PICU at T.C. Thompson’s Children’s Hospital.
During this special week for nurses, I want to honor my colleagues, my friends, and my PICU family for the remarkable job they do. I love each and every one of them. I admire their courage, their strength in adversity, their teamwork, and their passion to care for the children in the region’s only PICU. Thank you for all you do. Happy Nurse’s Week.
Lori Atchley, RN, BSN, CCRN