Lost my first patient....

  1. 4
    What a day.... yesterdaya around 7pm I lost my first patient. Even though I only knew her for a few days she has definitely left a mark on my heart. I had the privilege of holding her hand as she passed and I thanked her for letting me share that journey with her. She said thank you for being there for her and then gave me a big hug, a few hours later she passed. A clinical has never been so hard but in a way, so rewarding... Thank you sweet lady, I will never forget you!
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  4. 11 Comments so far...

  5. 2
    I never realized how strong hospice nurses are and how important their work is to the clients.... Definitely not my area but I have a new found respect for the entire hospice team!
  6. 0
    So glad your first experience with a patient death was positive because you will remember her for the rest of your life.
  7. 0
    ((HUGS)).....it is never "easy" when a patient dies. This one will stick with you for the rest of your career.

    Welcome to the group.....((HUGS))
  8. 2
    Although I'm only a CNA I lost my first patient in January as a matter of fact I lost two that day. The first lady I had for several months I got her from incontinent to continent when she first arrived and gave her her first shower at the facility because no one took the time to help her with one. She told me I would make a wonderful nurse each day I took care of her. It was a privilege to have taken care of her. The day before she passed she said she was ready to be put out of her misery and that it wouldn't be long. It gave me a sense of peace that she was ready and she isn't in pain anymore.
    BeesMama and Hygiene Queen like this.
  9. 0
    I lost my first patient last week, and when I say lost, I mean she died while I was there. Sudden death, not expected but not surprising considering her age. Seeing someone go from alert and communicative one minute to agonal breathing the next was shocking. I've been with family who died over a period of hours but this was very different. Luckily, my instructor made it a positive learning experience despite the sad situation.
  10. 0
    As a hospice nurse all I can say is it changes you, I mean your outlook on life! Your patient was blessed to have you there with her
  11. 1
    Remember this experience and advocate to replicate it for your patients. Some deaths are not nearly so... good, if you will...

    Heaven holds a special place for excellent hospice nurses... (one of whom I'm envisioning at this moment for her work with both of my parents).
    havehope likes this.
  12. 0
    Quote from francoml
    I never realized how strong hospice nurses are and how important their work is to the clients.... Definitely not my area but I have a new found respect for the entire hospice team!
    I know exactly how you feel. My first patient that I had lost was during my first day of my hospice rotation. I was with her and her family as she took her last breath and helped the family with anything they needed. The family wanted me around when the chaplain came and said some really nice things. We all stood around the bed holding hands. I did her postmortem care with the CNA. The RN I was assigned to had me tell the family about what services were offered and everything.

    It was an amazing experience that will forever be in my heart. I will never forget that patient and her family.
  13. 0
    Quite a few years ago, I used to work on the ambulance. In that time I "lost" quite a few patients over the years. The patients that will surprise you will almost invariably be the ones that you do not expect to die right then. There will also be patients that you will find that death is relief for. And for that, I mean both for patient and nurse/healthcare provider. Then there are the patients that have significant disease pathology that you would expect to drop right in front of you, yet they seem to linger on, seemingly forever.

    I have had all of them.

    If there is one thing that I have learned throughout the years, it's that we all die. There is no way out of death. It is, however, a very singular honor to be with someone as they pass. Why? You may be a stand-in for someone else, who could not be there. Your patient may not understand that you are just a student, but they understand that you are a presence that cares about them. After a while, with you experiencing a few deaths, they may blur together… But they care that you provide the patient is something that the family will remember forever. They may not know who you are, but they will know that you were there. Never forget that.


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