Every day at Akron Children’s, we strive to deliver compassionate care and create positive experiences for our patients and families. This month, we’re spotlighting Audrey Vaughn, a nurse in Akron Children’s Pediatrics, Warren, who recently received the following feedback from a patient family:
“… I need to mention that (Audrey Vaughn) saw my daughter without an appointment when I brought her in too early for urgent care. My daughter was in the middle of a panic attack, and it was her first, so I had no idea what was happening. Of course, I was terrified. (Audrey) was EXCELLENT. She helped my daughter in the most kind, professional and calm way. She also helped me understand what was happening. Her kindness went far that day. My daughter even commented later “that lady really knew how to help me.” I will be forever grateful for (Audrey’s) compassion and know-how. She also took the trouble to call me after she spoke to the doctor to let me know that strep was going around and perhaps I should bring my daughter back in for testing, if she continued to feel unwell. I brought her in the next morning and she tested positive. I’m so grateful for (Audrey’s) call because I’m not sure I would have thought of strep being the problem… Thank you to all!”
How long have you worked at Akron Children’s, and what’s your role?
I have been a nurse for 19 years and have worked as a staff nurse at Akron Children’s Pediatrics in Warren for about 4 1/2 years. I am also pursuing certification as a pediatric nurse practitioner due to the encouragement of the leadership and my team at Akron Children’s.
Reflecting on this patient experience and the feedback you received, how do you feel about it?
I was delighted to hear feedback from the family that I helped their child during a very anxious time. Honestly, I was just doing what I would do for any of our patients and never expected any recognition. I feel very humbled and honored by the family taking the time to show their appreciation.
When helping patient families who are feeling particularly anxious or upset about what is happening to them or their child, how do you approach the situation?
The most important approach is to stay calm and empathetic for the family. Knowledge of trauma-informed care and interventions for anxiety is also helpful. In this instance, it was just a simple breathing exercise that I walked through with the mom and the patient.
What does patient- and family-centered care mean to you? How do you strive to deliver that care?
Patient- and family-centered care means prioritizing patient needs while providing compassionate care. I strive to deliver care to patients and families by treating each person individually with compassion and empathy.
What do you most enjoy about your work at Akron Children’s?
Educating patients and their families about the care of their children is the best part of my work, followed by watching children grow and learn new things. Their little brains and the things they say always make me smile. I also am blessed to work with such a great team at Akron Children’s Pediatrics, Warren. They make coming to work every day easy!