I was exposed to nursing at the young age of four when my thirty-two year old mother became a victim of the polio epidemic in the early 50‘s. Although too young to remember many details, I do remember the ladies in white who made my mother feel so good and gave her reason to smile. At the age of fifteen, I spent the summer as a candystriper volunteer at our local hospital and that experience solidified my destiny to become a nurse.
During my four years at the Hunter College-Bellevue School of Nursing, many of the patients I cared for were indigent. Few spoke English. Few had family or friends who cared. I quickly realized that these patients did not have a voice… and they had no one to speak for them. They frequently did not get the care they needed… or deserved.
What could I do to make it better? How could I make a difference? I decided to go to graduate school and become a nurse educator. If I couldn’t change the system, I could at least change the product. I could educate nurses who cared, who advocated for their patients, and who practiced their chosen occupation with integrity, caring and professionalism.
Earning a Masters Degree in Nursing has opened many doors for me. I have had a wonderful career in the nursing /education arena. Over the span of my nursing and teaching career, I have touched so many lives…and I know that I have made a difference…as a nurse, as an educator and as a patient advocate.
I spent the first 39 years of my career obsessed with making sure that patients received the great nursing care that they deserved. Now I embark on a new journey – the journey to help patients find their voices. The journey to help patients achieve the best health care outcomes possible by partnering with their health care team in a positive way. Over the course of my career, I have been witness to the individual’s loss of identity, dignity and control upon entering the health care setting. But that doesn’t need to be a patient’s reality anymore as PatientAction.com revolutionizes the patient experience. No longer will patients be uninformed non-participants in their own care. No longer will patients accept the status quo. No longer will they agree to things they don’t understand. No longer will they allow strangers to make the decisions that may alter their lives forever. The goal of PatientAction.com is to help patients find their voice…and use it!