The husband was a hospice patient nearing the end of life. His wife of 60 years had a fall that injured her brain. A team of nurses brought them together for their final hours.
NH+C honors select employees each year as part of our Do The Next Right Thing initiative that empowers every individual on staff to help provide the best experience possible for patients, guests, and each other. We're proud to honor Mary, Casi and Kayla this year.
Mary Myos was charge nurse on the Medical/Surgical floor when a call came from the ED to admit the woman for end-of-life care. Her husband was getting nursing care at home. Hospice nurse Kayla Zandstra asked if they could keep the couple together. Together with House Supervisor Casi Otte, they made it happen. Using the biggest hospital room, they pushed two beds together . . . then took the side rails down so the couple could hold hands.
“For them to be able to hold each other's hands was extremely important to both staff and family,” Casi says. Mary adds: “It meant a lot to try to make the experience a positive thing, even in a very sad time.”
The couple passed away 48 hours apart. “It was so touching,” Mary says. “That's the most rewarding thing about being a nurse, being part of something like this.”
“This is what we're here for,” Casi says. “This is why we do what we do every single day, even during COVID times, the difficult times. This is what makes it all worth it.”