Doc Talk: Hospice Nurse Monica Talks About Her Work
Dr. David Wensel, talks with special guest Monica Delagarza, Midland Care Hospice RN, on our weekly Doc Talks about her work on the interdisciplinary team.
Special guest Monica Delagarza, hospice RN – We answer your questions on our weekly Live Doc Talk with Dr. David Wensel, Midland Care Medical Director.
Posted by Midland Care Connection, Inc. on Wednesday, September 14, 2016
David: Hello, this is Dr. David Wensel with Doc Talk for Midland Care and today, we have a special guest. Last week, we talked about the members of the interdisciplinary team and we are very fortunate to have one of the team members from the hospice house. This is Monica, one of the nurses, from our Hospice House interdisciplinary team, and Monica, I will just have you introduce yourself and tell the audience a little bit about what your role is on the interdisciplinary team.
Monica: My name is Monica. I am one of the Registered Nurses here at the Hospice House. As a Registered Nurse here, I spend a lot of time with the patient and the patient families. I am normally the first face they see whenever they come into the Hospice House, so it is important that I am their voice and their advocate while they are here. It is very important for me to support the family and the patient when the patient is transitioning into the end of life. We are the ones that are there and it is important for me to collect all the information I can and then take that into our IDT meeting.
David: One of the things I often say to families here when they talk about the staff, I say this specifically about the nurses, is that you guys are really the angels of this place. The medical providers, the physicians or even the nurse practitioners, we just kind of come around a little bit once a day, sort of pop in and see the patients, but you guys are the ones that are really at the bedside every day doing the heavy lifting of caring for these patients and it’s the teamwork that goes on in our interdisciplinary team and the role that you play on that team is so critical. Talk a little bit about where you feel your advocacy is for patients and families on the interdisciplinary team.
Monica: We are given orders from the providers on what medication the patient may need to keep them comfortable. It is important for us to administer those medications, check to see the effectiveness and make sure that what we are doing is actually working. Every day after change of shift we do a full body assessment on the patient and at that point we are collecting any physical, emotional, spiritual, even psychosocial needs and at that point report those to the appropriate staff member so they can follow through on the patient’s care and their needs. Like you said, we are the ones that are at the bedside most of the time and it’s important for us to keep close eye on any changes and report those in a timely manner so that we can get it adjusted.
David: The message to the community and the audience here is how we work together as a team. Interacting with one another (each of the team members) to address the suffering of the patients and families. You guys are the very first ones to recognize when a patient is having emotional suffering or physical suffering or spiritual suffering and as you said, you make that call to the appropriate team member. We function here, and the example I used last week, was a round table instead of a square table. Everybody has a voice and often times your voice is really important to be heard because you are so involved in the care of the patient. I really appreciate you taking the time out of our busy schedule today to sit down with us and introduce the audience to the nurses that work or “I call them the Angels” that work at the Hospice House. Thank you for doing that and thank you guys for your comments, your shares and your likes. Please keep those coming and we will continue this introduction to the interdisciplinary team meetings as the weeks go by.