In this together: Laura Gibson
April 6, 2020 - Hospital Family Story, Stories
For Laura Gibson, managing the patient flow of a bustling Emergency Department had become second nature for the Brampton Civic Resource Nurse. But her routine soon changed with the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. “We are now focused on identifying [COVID-positive] patients that need to be isolated and providing the proper education for those who are being discharged to self-isolate, then making sure they have appropriate follow-up,” she says.
Getting organized and being flexible to shift roles and responsibilities has been critical during this challenging time. “As a team, we are very organized in how we deal with situations and identifying our roles,” she says.
Well defined roles are especially important during a protected code blue, explains Laura, which is a paired-down version of a hospital code blue. “Normally for code blue, we might have two doctors, three or four nurses and an orderly helping with CPR,” she says. “To minimize exposure, a protected code blue would include one physician, one nurse and one respiratory therapist – so there’s a lot of streamlining of roles to make sure everyone knows what to do in these situations.”
Although COVID-positive cases have increased, what really hit home for Laura was when she saw the first case of a younger patient requiring intubation. “Even though it was a challenging situation, I was very impressed by how everybody really pulled together to make sure the patient received exceptional care,” she says.
Having a good support system, both at home and at Osler have been a strong point for Laura. “I think debriefing with colleagues and being able to talk about what is happening has been invaluable.” Laura has also been proud of the work of Osler—working to improve efficiencies to prepare for COVID-positive patients, while keeping other patients and staff safe. “I think we’ve done a very good job of preparing for this. We all got into nursing because we care for people and we want to help people,” she says. “Even though, with social distancing, we are all trying to stay a little bit farther apart than we normally would, we are all in this together.”
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