Heather Allen, Cath Lab – Beaumont Trenton

The pandemic that affected Michigan early this year brought nursing and hospital staff to the frontline. Wanting to help and ready to do their part in this fight, Cath Lab nurses truly stepped up, right from the frightening beginning. Nursing staff readily dispersed to help in the emergency room and signed up to be redeployed to the intensive care units. These nurses were ready to support the patients and families in the area where they work and live.

Upon learning that the previous plan to develop an intensive care unit in the outpatient surgery center was not going to work, the team came together to turn the Cath Lab pre-/post-procedural area into an intensive care unit overnight. All staff, with help from multiple different departments, had a hands-on board. The Cath Lab team worked all hours of the day and night to staff a new unit with the surgical ICU team while still covering a 24-hour call schedule and staffing a cardiac catheterization unit and interventional radiology unit for emergent procedures. By staff stepping up to work extra shifts and all different hours, Beaumont Trenton was able to keep their STEMI program and Interventional Radiology department open for emergencies in the area it serves. True teamwork showed when nurses and staff from different units throughout the hospital joined together and made sacrifices to care for our community and patients. Nurses from specialty units such as PACU and Cath Lab took on intensive care patient assignments with assistance from one surgical ICU nurse per shift.

Patients and families were especially vulnerable during this time. The Cath Lab nurses made the extra effort to help families have a voice and support their family members in such a scary situation. By using FaceTime, making extra phone calls, and taking the time to learn about the interests of their patients, nurses helped to ease the difficult situation and care for their patients and families. Taking extra steps to work with families was key to progressing through the added challenge of limited visitation and contact. Patients often felt isolated and required empathetic and caring nurses to aid in their recovery, especially as family was not available to join the care team in person. These nurses truly were there for patients and families during this time.

Katie Sturgill, BSN, RN, Clinical Manager, was an outstanding leader as she inspired the team with her communication and scheduling skills, dedication, and emotional support. Jill Assed, RN, Heather Allen, RN, Robyn Clevinger, RN, Trisha Cooney, BSN, RN, Chelsea Foucher, RN, Tammy Shivel, RN, Chelsey Thackery, BSN, RN, Corri Wotta, BSN, RN, and Keli Wludyka, RN, were nurses that deserve recognition for going above and beyond for their patients, families, and community.