The great American poet and author Maya Angelou famously praised nurses with these words: “They may forget your name, but they will never forget how you made them feel.”
CDPHP member Kathryn Lynch (left, above) will forever remember the name of nurse Gina Fabrizio (right) and the compassionate care she provided Kathryn as part of the CDPHP Hospital to Home care team.
“I didn’t have any family with me, and I looked up at her and felt like I had my big sister right there,” says Kathryn about her experience at St. Peter’s Hospital in Albany, where Gina works side-by-side with the hospital’s nurses and staff to see that CDPHP members are supported and comforted. “I was scared beyond measure,” says Kathryn. “I’ve never been so scared, ever.”
In a striking turn of events, Kathryn’s health scare began the very day she had brought her husband home from his own hospitalization. “After getting him all settled in, I got up in the middle of the night to get a drink of water,” she recalls. “I went to the fridge to grab my bottle, and as I started to close the door, everything went black.”
Finding her passed out on the floor, Kathryn’s husband called 911. When first responders arrived, Kathryn was in and out of consciousness. But she remembers frightenedly hearing someone say, “I can’t get anything from her, there’s no pulse.”
“They quickly got me in the ambulance and the next thing I know, I was being taken care of by three lovely, lovely angels in the ER at St. Peter’s. It turns out I had a perforated ulcer, and I had a mild stroke, and with the fall… a concussion. I was a hot mess.”
With a son in Arizona and another in Pennsylvania – and her husband recovering at home – Kathryn was alone in the hospital, and she was scared. “And that’s when Gina steps in… to make sure I was comfortable and that CDPHP was taking care of me in every way, shape, and form. She offered me the most beautiful hand and smile and heart. She was a sister right away, truly,” Kathryn recalls fondly.
“Then every day in the hospital she was checking on me for one thing or another. We didn’t have any idea how long I’d be there, but she was already making sure I had a walker to go home with and that all my care was in place.”
“I got discharged on a Sunday, she called me Monday to check on me and make sure I was comfortable and if there was anything I needed. That gift of the heart, you can’t put a price on that. And with CDPHP everything is on point. How blessed we are to live here and have you.”
To honor her caregivers, Kathryn nominated Gina and the equally compassionate nurses of St. Peter’s for Daisy Awards, the international award that recognizes nurses who go above and beyond for patients with excellence in both clinical care and compassion.
“I love being there for people,” says Gina. “We have an incredible team at CDPHP, and the people I work with are amazing. Because Kathryn’s family wasn’t able to be there, we can be there for her. And at the same time, we’re working with the hospital and doctors to make sure there’s a continuation of care when leaving the hospital… making sure you’re not waiting for an appointment, that you have that ride, that everybody’s happy and healthy.”
Conceived by Dr. John Bennett, president and CEO of CDPHP, the Hospital to Home program was established to keep patients and their loved ones supported and well-informed during and after a stay at participating hospitals. The program is a key part of the CDPHP integrated healthcare delivery model – offering a seamless experience for CDPHP members, with care coordinated between all of their providers, their pharmacy, and their health insurer.
Other CDPHP resources for members include a guide for returning home from the hospital or rehab facility.
“I work with wonderful people,” says Gina. “The fact that Kathryn remembers me just continues to prove that what we’re doing at CDPHP is a good thing.”
“And you are remembered,” says Kathryn. “Dearly and affectionately.”
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